Dysferlin is a Ca2+-activated lipid binding protein implicated in muscle membrane repair. Recessive variants in DYSF result in dysferlinopathy, a progressive muscular dystrophy. We showed previously that calpain cleavage within a motif encoded by alternatively spliced exon 40a releases a 72 kDa C-terminal minidysferlin recruited to injured sarcolemma. Herein we use CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing to knock out murine Dysf exon 40a, to specifically assess its role in membrane repair and development of dysferlinopathy. We created three Dysf exon 40a knockout (40aKO) mouse lines that each express different levels of dysferlin protein ranging from similar to 90%, similar to 50% and similar to 10-20% levels of wild-type. Histopathological analysis of skeletal muscles from all 12-month-old 40aKO lines showed virtual absence of dystrophic features and normal membrane repair capacity for all three 40aKO lines, as compared with dysferlin-null BLAJ mice. Further, lipidomic and proteomic analyses on 18wk old quadriceps show all three 40aKO lines are spared the profound lipidomic/proteomic imbalance that characterises dysferlin-deficient BLAJ muscles. Collective results indicate that membrane repair does not depend upon calpain cleavage within exon 40a and that similar to 10-20% of WT dysferlin protein expression is sufficient to maintain the muscle lipidome, proteome and membrane repair capacity to crucially prevent development of dysferlinopathy.
Acta Neuropathologica Communications
Yasa, J., Reed, C. E., Bournazos, A. M., Evesson, F. J., Pang, I., Graham, M. E., Wark, J. R., Nijagal, B., Kwan, K. H., Kwiatkowski, T., Jung, R., Weisleder, N., Cooper, S. T., & Lemckert, F. A. (2023). Minimal expression of dysferlin prevents development of dysferlinopathy in dysferlin exon 40a knockout mice. Acta Neuropathologica Communications, 11(1), 1-16. http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40478-022-01473-x