Soluble Heparin Binding Epidermal Growth Factor-Like Growth Factor Is a Regulator of GALGT2 Expression and GALGT2-Dependent Muscle and Neuromuscular Phenotypes.


Center for Gene Therapy, The Research Institute at Nationwide Children's Hospital, Columbus, Ohio, USA [Email]


GALGT2 (also B4GALNT2) encodes a glycosyltransferase that is normally confined to the neuromuscular and myotendinous junction in adult skeletal muscle. GALGT2 overexpression in muscle can inhibit muscular dystrophy in mouse models of the disease by inducing the overexpression of surrogate muscle proteins, including utrophin, agrin, laminins, and integrins. Despite its well-documented biological properties, little is known about the endogenous regulation of muscle GALGT2 expression. Here, we demonstrate that epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) ligands can activate the human GALGT2 promoter. Overexpression of one such ligand, soluble heparin-binding EGF-like growth factor (sHB-EGF), also stimulated mouse muscle Galgt2 gene expression and expression of GALGT2-inducible surrogate muscle genes. Deletion analysis of the GALGT2 promoter identified a 45-bp region containing a TFAP4-binding site that was required for sHB-EGF activation. sHB-EGF increased TFAP4 binding to this site in muscle cells and increased endogenous Tfap4 gene expression. sHB-EGF also increased muscle EGFR protein expression and activated EGFR-Akt signaling. sHB-EGF expression was concentrated at the neuromuscular junction, and Hbegf deletion reduced Galgt2-dependent synaptic glycosylation. Hbegf deletion also mimicked Galgt2-dependent neuromuscular and muscular dystrophy phenotypes. These data demonstrate that sHB-EGF is an endogenous regulator of muscle Galgt2 gene expression and can mimic Galgt2-dependent muscle phenotypes.


AAV,EGFR,GALGT2,HB-EGF,agrin,laminin,muscular dystrophy,neuromuscular junction,skeletal muscle,

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