Metabolic regulation of muscle stem cells

Prof. Dr. Sigmar Stricker

October 26, 2020

Our group aims to understand mechanisms controlling differentiation of fibrogenic, adipogenic, and myogenic progenitors in development, as well as the respective adult tissue-resident stem cells (see e.g. these articles in Nature Communications, Development and Stem Cell Research).

This year, we offer 2 PhD projects targeted at unraveling the transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms governing the differentiation of adipose tissue-resident stem cells as well as muscle stem cells. Both projects will make use of state-of-the-art genome-wide technologies (RNA-Seq, ATAC-Seq, ChIP-Seq), CRISPR-Cas9-mediated gene editing, metabolomics, and single cell sequencing.

Myogenic progenitors (blue nuclei) and differentiating myoblasts / fibers (MyoD in red, Myosin in greeen)

This project will use muscle stem cells to elucidate the interplay of cellular metabolism and (epi)genetic control of differentiation. During early postnatal development, a subset of muscle progenitors is prevented from myogenic differentiation and enters a state of quiescence, which is crucial for their future function as muscle-resident stem cells. The mechanisms controlling this process are not well understood; we have evidence that metabolic reprogramming is key to quiescence induction. Using a combination of ex-vivo primary cell models and in vivo models we aim to understand the mechanisms a) controlling metabolism during quiescence induction, and b) the epigenetic consequences of metabolic reprogramming.

Project partner: Aydan Bulut-Karslioglu (MPIMG)

For more information, visit the website of the Biochemistry and Genetics group

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