In situ real-time imaging of the satellite cells in rat intact and injured soleus muscles using quantum dots
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The recruitment of satellite cells, which are located between the basement membrane and the plasma membrane in myofibers, is required for myofiber repair after muscle injury or disease. In particular, satellite cell migration has been focused on as a satellite cell response to muscle injury because satellite cell motility has been revealed in cell culture. On the other hand, in situ, it is poorly understood how satellite cell migration is involved in muscle regeneration after injury because in situ it has been technically very difficult to visualize living satellite cells localized within skeletal muscle. In the present study, using quantum dots conjugated to anti-M-cadherin antibody, we attempted the visualization of satellite cells in both intact and injured skeletal muscle of rat in situ. As a result, the present study is the first to demonstrate in situ real-time imaging of satellite cells localized within the skeletal muscle. Moreover, it was indicated that satellite cell migration toward an injured site was induced in injured muscle while spatiotemporal change in satellite cells did not occur in intact muscle. Thus, it was suggested that the satellite cell migration may play important roles in the regulation of muscle regeneration after injury. Moreover, the new method used in the present study will be a useful tool to develop satellite cell-based therapies for muscle injury or disease.