Advisor - Dr. Jennifer Powell
Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is fatal in humans as it causes widespread muscle atrophy. The GRMD dog has been used as a model for studying DMD. RNA microarrays were used to determine the expression of miRNAs from the cranial sartorius (CS) and vastus lateralis (VL) muscles of GRMD dogs. Heat maps created with unsupervised hierarchical clustering were used to visualize the differential expression of miRNAs between the CS and VL muscles. The miRNAs that were differentially expressed between the CS and VL are hsa-miR-4710, hsa-miR-3713, hsa-miR-208 and hsa-miR-3137. It is not known what hsa-miR-4710, hsa-miR-3713 regulate while hsa-miR-208 and hsa-miR-3137 regulate myostatin – a protein that inhibits muscle growth. Hsa-miR-208 and hsa-miR-3137 are both upregulated in CS tissue, which could explain why CS muscle shows true muscle hypertrophy. Therefore hsa-miR-208 and hsa-miR-3137 have potential for clinical application.