Dietary fat influences the expression of contractile and metabolic genes in rat skeletal muscle

Wataru Mizunoya, Yohei Iwamoto, Bungo Shirouchi, Masao Sato, Yusuke Komiya, Farzaneh Rahimi Razin, Ryuichi Tatsumi, Yusuke Sato, Mako Nakamura, Yoshihide Ikeuchi

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48 Citations (Scopus)


Dietary fat plays a major role in obesity, lipid metabolism, and cardiovascular diseases. To determine whether the intake of different types of dietary fats affect the muscle fiber types that govern the metabolic and contractile properties of the skeletal muscle, we fed male Wistar rats with a 15% fat diet derived from different fat sources. Diets composed of soybean oil (n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA)-rich), fish oil (n-3 PUFA-rich), or lard (low in PUFAs) were administered to the rats for 4 weeks. Myosin heavy chain (MyHC) isoforms were used as biomarkers to delineate the skeletal muscle fiber types. Compared with soybean oil intake, fish oil intake showed significantly lower levels of the fast-type MyHC2B and higher levels of the intermediate-type MyHC2X composition in the extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle, which is a fast-type dominant muscle. Concomitantly, MyHC2X mRNA levels in fish oil-fed rats were significantly higher than those observed in the soybean oil-fed rats. The MyHC isoform composition in the lard-fed rats was an intermediate between that of the fish oil and soybean oil-fed rats. Mitochondrial uncoupling protein 3, pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase 4, and porin mRNA showed significantly upregulated levels in the EDL of fish oil-fed rats compared to those observed in soybean oil-fed and lard-fed rats, implying an activation of oxidative metabolism. In contrast, no changes in the composition of MyHC isoforms was observed in the soleus muscle, which is a slow-type dominant muscle. Fatty acid composition in the serum and the muscle was significantly influenced by the type of dietary fat consumed. In conclusion, dietary fat affects the expression of genes related to the contractile and metabolic properties in the fast-type dominant skeletal muscle, where the activation of oxidative metabolism is more pronounced after fish oil intake than that after soybean oil intake.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere80152
JournalPloS one
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 11 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General


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