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Clyde J. Wright, Sarah McKenna, Robyn De Dios, Brit H. Boehmer, Leanna Nguyen, Sankar Ghosh, Jeryl Sandoval, and Paul J Rozance

The β-cell response to injury may be as critical for the development of diabetes as the specific insult. In the current study, we use streptozotocin (STZ) to injure the β-cell in order to study the response with a focus on NFκB. MIN6 cells were exposed to STZ (0.5-8mM, 0-24h) ±TNFα (100ng/mL) and ±IκBβ siRNA to lower the threshold to NFκB activation. Cell viability was determined by trypan blue exclusion. NFκB activation was determined by expression of the target genes Nos2 and Cxcl10, localization of the NFκB proteins p65 and p50, and expression and localization of the NFκB inhibitors, IκBβ and IκBα. There was no NFκB activation in MIN6 cell exposed to STZ (2 mM) alone. However, knocking down IκBβ expression using siRNA resulted in STZ-induced expression of NFκB target genes and increased cell death, while co-incubation with STZ and TNFα enhanced cell death compared to either exposure alone. Adult male IκBβ-/- and wild type (WT) mice were exposed to STZ and monitored for diabetes. The IκBβ-/- mice developed hyperglycemia and diabetes more frequently than controls following STZ exposure. Based on these results we conclude that STZ exposure alone does not induce NFκB activity. However, lowering the threshold to NFκB activation by co-incubation with TNFα or lowering IκBβ levels by siRNA sensitizes the NFκB response to STZ and results in a higher likelihood of developing diabetes in vivo. Therefore, increasing the threshold to NFκB activation through stabilizing NFκB inhibitory proteins may prevent β-cell injury and the development of diabetes.

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Eileen I Chang, Paul J Rozance, Stephanie R Wesolowski, Leanna M Nguyen, Steven C Shaw, Robert A Sclafani, Kristen K Bjorkman, Angela K Peter, William W Hay Jr, and Laura D Brown

Intrauterine growth-restricted (IUGR) fetuses are born with reduced skeletal muscle mass. We hypothesized that reduced rates of myogenesis would contribute to fewer and smaller myofibers in IUGR fetal hindlimb muscle compared to the normally growing fetus. We tested this hypothesis in IUGR fetal sheep with progressive placental insufficiency produced by exposing pregnant ewes to elevated ambient temperatures from 38 to 116 days gestation (dGA; term = 147 dGA). Surgically catheterized control (CON, n = 8) and IUGR (n = 13) fetal sheep were injected with intravenous 5-bromo-2′-deoxyuridine (BrdU) prior to muscle collection (134 dGA). Rates of myogenesis, defined as the combined processes of myoblast proliferation, differentiation, and fusion into myofibers, were determined in biceps femoris (BF), tibialis anterior (TA), and flexor digitorum superficialis (FDS) muscles. Total myofiber number was determined for the entire cross-section of the FDS muscle. In IUGR fetuses, the number of BrdU+ myonuclei per myofiber cross-section was lower in BF, TA, and FDS (P < 0.05), total myonuclear number per myofiber cross-section was lower in BF and FDS (P < 0.05), and total myofiber number was lower in FDS (P < 0.005) compared to CON. mRNA expression levels of cyclins, cyclin-dependent protein kinases, and myogenic regulatory factors were lower (P < 0.05), and inhibitors of the cell cycle were higher (P < 0.05) in IUGR BF compared to CON. Markers of apoptosis were not different in IUGR BF muscle. These results show that in IUGR fetuses, reduced rates of myogenesis produce fewer numbers of myonuclei, which may limit hypertrophic myofiber growth. Fewer myofibers of smaller size contribute to smaller muscle mass in the IUGR fetus.