In this study, we investigated whether loss of GH receptor (GHR) signaling in postnatal skeletal muscle alters muscle mass and regenerative ability in adult mice and whether this was dependent on IGF-1 receptor (IGF-1R) signaling. To do so, we used mouse models with skeletal muscle-specific loss of GHR signaling (mGHRKO), IGF-1R and insulin receptor signaling (MKR), or both GHR and IGF-1R/insulin receptor signaling (mGHRKO/MKR). We did not find a reduction in muscle cross-sectional area, fiber type composition, or response to pathological muscle injury in male mGHRKO and mGHRKO/MKR mice when compared with control and MKR mice, respectively. This could potentially be explained by unchanged skeletal muscle Igf-1 expression in mGHRKO and mGHRKO/MKR mice relative to control and MKR mice, respectively. Furthermore, MKR and mGHRKO/MKR mice, but not mGHRKO mice, demonstrated reduced fiber fusion after cardiotoxin injection, suggesting that IGF-1, and not GH, promotes fiber fusion in adult mice. In summary, our data suggest that GHR signaling in postnatal skeletal muscle does not play a significant role in regulating muscle mass or muscle regeneration. Additionally, in our model, muscle Igf-1 expression is not dependent on GHR signaling in postnatal skeletal muscle.
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