Sustained Systemic Levels of IL-6 Impinge Early Muscle Growth and Induce Muscle Atrophy and Wasting in Adulthood

Laura Pelosi, Maria Grazia Berardinelli, Laura Forcina, Francesca Ascenzi, Emanuele Rizzuto, Marco Sandri, Fabrizio De Benedetti, Bianca Maria Scicchitano, Antonio Musarò

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivistapeer review


IL-6 is a pleiotropic cytokine that can exert different and opposite effects. The muscle-induced and transient expression of IL-6 can act in an autocrine or paracrine manner, stimulating anabolic pathways associated with muscle growth, myogenesis, and with regulation of energy metabolism. In contrast, under pathologic conditions, including muscular dystrophy, cancer associated cachexia, aging, chronic inflammatory diseases, and other pathologies, the plasma levels of IL-6 significantly increase, promoting muscle wasting. Nevertheless, the specific physio-pathological role exerted by IL-6 in the maintenance of differentiated phenotype remains to be addressed. The purpose of this study was to define the role of increased plasma levels of IL-6 on muscle homeostasis and the mechanisms contributing to muscle loss. Here, we reported that increased plasma levels of IL-6 promote alteration in muscle growth at early stage of postnatal life and induce muscle wasting by triggering a shift of the slow-twitch fibers toward a more sensitive fast fiber phenotype. These findings unveil a role for IL-6 as a potential biomarker of stunted growth and skeletal muscle wasting.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)1816-1830
Numero di pagine15
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2021


  • PGC-1 alpha
  • interleukin-6
  • muscle atrophy
  • muscle growth
  • skeletal muscle


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