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Mitochondrial hydrogen sulfide supplementation improves health in the C. elegans Duchenne muscular dystrophy model

Abstract

Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked recessive disorder characterized by progressive muscle degeneration and weakness due to mutations in the dystrophin gene. The symptoms of DMD share similarities with those of accelerated aging. Recently, hydrogen sulfide (H2S) supplementation has been suggested to modulate the effects of age-related decline in muscle function, and metabolic H2S deficiencies have been implicated in affecting muscle mass in conditions such as phenylketonuria. We therefore evaluated the use of sodium GYY4137 (NaGYY), a H2S-releasing molecule, as a possible approach for DMD treatment. Using the dys-1(eg33) Caenorhabditis elegans DMD model, we found that NaGYY treatment (100 microM) improved movement, strength, gait, and muscle mitochondrial structure, similar to the gold-standard therapeutic treatment, prednisone (370 microM). The health improvements of either treatment required the action of the kinase JNK-1, the transcription factor SKN-1, and the NAD-dependent deacetylase SIR-2.1. The transcription factor DAF-16 was required for the health benefits of NaGYY treatment, but not prednisone treatment. AP39 (100 pM), a mitochondria-targeted H2S compound, also improved movement and strength in the dys-1(eg33) model, further implying that these improvements are mitochondria-based. Additionally, we found a decline in total sulfide and H2S-producing enzymes in dystrophin/utrophin knockout mice. Overall, our results suggest that H2S deficit may contribute to DMD pathology, and rectifying/overcoming the deficit with H2S delivery compounds has potential as a therapeutic approach to DMD treatment.

Type Journal
ISBN 1091-6490 (Electronic) 0027-8424 (Linking)
Authors Ellwood, R. A.; Hewitt, J. E.; Torregrossa, R.; Philp, A. M.; Hardee, J. P.; Hughes, S.; van de Klashorst, D.; Gharahdaghi, N.; Anupom, T.; Slade, L.; Deane, C. S.; Cooke, M.; Etheridge, T.; Piasecki, M.; Antebi, A.; Lynch, G. S.; Philp, A.; Vanapalli, S. A.; Whiteman, M.; Szewczyk, N. J.
Responsible Garvan Author Dr Andy Philp
Publisher Name PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Published Date 2021-03-02
Published Volume 118
Published Issue 9
Status Published in-print
DOI 10.1073/pnas.2018342118
URL link to publisher's version https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/33627403