Self-transducible LRS-UNE-L peptide enhances muscle regeneration

Mi Ock Baek, Hye Jeong Cho, Do Sik Min, Cheol Soo Choi, Mee Sup Yoon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Muscle regeneration includes proliferation and differentiation of muscle satellite cells, which involves the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR). We identified the C-terminal unique attached sequence motif (UNE) domain of leucyl-tRNA synthetase (LRS-UNE-L) as an mTORC1 (mTOR complex1)-activating domain that acts through Vps34 and phospholipase D1 (PLD1) when introduced in the form of a muscle-enhancing peptide. Methods: In vitro Vps34 lipid kinase assay, phosphatidylinositol 3-phosphate (PI(3)P) measurement, in vivo PLD1 assay, and western blot assay were performed in HEK293 cells to test the effect of the LRS-UNE-L on the Vps34-PLD1-mTOR pathway. Adeno-associated virus (AAV)-LRS-UNE-L was transduced in C2C12 cells in vitro, in BaCl2-injured tibialis anterior (TA) muscles, and in 18-month-old TA muscles to analyse its effect on myogenesis, muscle regeneration, and aged muscle, respectively. The muscle-specific cell-permeable peptide M12 was fused with LRS-UNE-L and tested for cell integration in C2C12 and HEK293 cells using FACS analysis and immunocytochemistry. Finally, M12-LRS-UNE-L was introduced into BaCl2-injured TA muscles of 15-week-old Pld1+/+ or Pld1−/− mice, and its effect was analysed by measurement of cross-sectional area of regenerating muscle fibres. Results: The LRS-UNE-L expression restored amino acid-induced S6K1 phosphorylation in LRS knockdown cells in a RagD GTPases-independent manner (421%, P = 0.007 vs. LRS knockdown control cells). The LRS-UNE-L domain was directly bound to Vps34; this interaction was accompanied by increases in Vps34 activity (166%, P = 0.0352), PI(3)P levels (146%, P = 0.0039), and PLD1 activity (228%, P = 0.0294) compared with amino acid-treated control cells, but it did not affect autophagic flux. AAV-delivered LRS-UNE-L domain augmented S6K1 phosphorylation (174%, P = 0.0013), mRNA levels of myosin heavy chain (MHC) (122%, P = 0.0282) and insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF2) (146%, P = 0.008), and myogenic fusion (133%, P = 0.0479) in C2C12 myotubes. AAV-LRS-UNE-L increased the size of regenerating muscle fibres in BaCl2-injured TA muscles (124%, P = 0.0279) (n = 9–10), but it did not change the muscle fibre size of TA muscles in old mice. M12-LRS-UNE-L was preferentially delivered into C2C12 cells compared with HEK293 cells and augmented regeneration of BaCl2-injured TA muscles in a PLD1-dependent manner (116%, P = 0.0022) (n = 6). Conclusions: Our results provide compelling evidence that M12-LRS-UNE-L could be a muscle-enhancing protein targeting mTOR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1277-1288
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Apr

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government (Ministry of Science and ICT; NRF‐2021R1A2B5B01002047, NRF‐2014M3A9D5A01073886), and the Korea Health Technology R&D Project through the Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI), which was funded by the Ministry for Health and Welfare of Korea (HI17C0426, HR14C0001).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society on Sarcopenia, Cachexia and Wasting Disorders.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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