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    Previous studies have suggested that macrophage-mediated chronic inflammation is involved in the development of rotator cuff muscle atrophy and degeneration following massive tendon tears. Increased RhoA signaling has been reported in chronic muscle degeneration, such as muscular dystrophy. However, the role of RhoA signaling in macrophage infiltration and rotator muscle degeneration remains unknown. Using a previously established rat model of massive rotator cuff tears, we found RhoA signaling is upregulated in rotator cuff muscle following a massive tendon-nerve injury. This increase in RhoA expression is greatly potentiated by the administration of a potent RhoA activator, lysophosphatidic acid (LPA), and is accompanied by increased TNFα and TGF-β1 expression in rotator cuff muscle. Boosting RhoA signaling with LPA significantly worsened rotator cuff muscle atrophy, fibrosis, and fatty infiltration, accompanied with massive monocytic infiltration of rotator cuff muscles. Co-staining of RhoA and the tissue macrophage marker CD68 showed that CD68+ tissue macrophages are the dominant cell source of increased RhoA signaling in rotator cuff muscles after tendon tears. Taken together, our findings suggest that LPA-mediated RhoA signaling in injured muscle worsens the outcomes of atrophy, fibrosis, and fatty infiltration by increasing macrophage infiltraion in rotator cuff muscle. Clinically, inhibiting RhoA signaling may represent a future direction for developing new treatments to improve muscle quality following massive rotator cuff tears. © 2016 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Orthop Res 35:1539-1547, 2017. © 2016 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


    Michael R Davies, Lawrence Lee, Brian T Feeley, Hubert T Kim, Xuhui Liu. Lysophosphatidic acid-induced RhoA signaling and prolonged macrophage infiltration worsens fibrosis and fatty infiltration following rotator cuff tears. Journal of orthopaedic research : official publication of the Orthopaedic Research Society. 2017 Jul;35(7):1539-1547

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    PMID: 27505847

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