Nestin contributes to skeletal muscle homeostasis and regeneration

Julia Lindqvist, Elin Torvaldson, Josef Gullmets, Henok Karvonen, Andras Nagy, Pekka Taimen, John E. Eriksson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Nestin, a member of the cytoskeletal family of intermediate filaments, regulates the onset of myogenic differentiation through bidirectional signaling with the kinase Cdk5. Here, we show that these effects are also reflected at the organism level, as there is a loss of skeletal muscle mass in nestin-/- (NesKO) mice, reflected as reduced lean (muscle) mass in the mice. Further examination of muscles in male mice revealed that these effects stemmed from nestin-deficient muscles being more prone to spontaneous regeneration. When the regeneration capacity of the compromised NesKO muscle was tested by muscle injury experiments, a significant healing delay was observed. NesKO satellite cells showed delayed proliferation kinetics in conjunction with an elevation in p35 (encoded by Cdk5r1) levels and Cdk5 activity. These results reveal that nestin deficiency generates a spontaneous regenerative phenotype in skeletal muscle that relates to a disturbed proliferation cycle that is associated with uncontrolled Cdk5 activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2833-2842
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Cell Science
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Cdk5
  • Differentiation
  • Intermediate filament
  • Muscle
  • Nestin
  • Regeneration

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