Diabetology International

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 52–58 | Cite as

Vitamin D deficiency aggravates diabetes-induced muscle wasting in female mice

  • Yukinori Tamura
  • Haruko Fujito
  • Naoyuki Kawao
  • Hiroshi KajiEmail author
Original Article


We recently reported that vitamin D deficiency aggravates diabetic bone loss in mice. Although vitamin D affects both muscle and bone, the role of the vitamin D state in diabetic muscle loss and muscle-bone relationships remains unclear. In the present study, we examined the effects of vitamin D deficiency on muscle mass, muscle differentiation and muscle-derived humoral factors linking muscle to bone in diabetic female mice. Diabetes was induced in mice by streptozotocin (STZ) injection after feeding with a normal or vitamin D-deficient diet for 6 weeks. Quantitative computed tomography analysis showed that tibial muscle mass was significantly decreased in diabetic mice compared with control mice 4 weeks after induction of diabetes. Vitamin D deficiency accelerated muscle loss in diabetic mice. Vitamin D deficiency augmented the decreases in Pax7 mRNA levels and the increases in muscle RING-Finger Protein-1 and atrogin-1 mRNA levels induced by diabetes in the gastrocnemius muscle of mice. Moreover, vitamin D deficiency decreased the mRNA levels of insulin-like growth factor-1, fibroblast growth factor-2 and osteoglycin in muscle of diabetic mice. In conclusion, we demonstrated that vitamin D deficiency aggravates muscle loss induced by diabetes in female mice. Vitamin D may exert significant effects on the maintenance of the musculoskeletal system partly through the muscle-bone relationships in diabetic state.


Vitamin D Diabetes Muscle wasting Myoblast 



This study was supported by Grants-in-aid 26860152 and 15K08220 from the Ministry of Science, Education and Culture of Japan (to Y.T. and to H.K., respectively) and a grant from The Nakatomi Foundation.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest


Ethical standards

All institutional and national guidelines for the care and use of laboratory animals were followed.


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Copyright information

© The Japan Diabetes Society 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yukinori Tamura
    • 1
  • Haruko Fujito
    • 1
  • Naoyuki Kawao
    • 1
  • Hiroshi Kaji
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Physiology and Regenerative MedicineKindai University Faculty of MedicineOsakasayamaJapan

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