Neonatal hyper- and hypothyroidism alter the myoglobin gene expression program in adulthood
Myoglobin acts as an oxygen store and a reactive oxygen species acceptor in muscles. We examined myoglobin mRNA in rat cardiac ventricle and skeletal muscles during the first 42 days of life and the impact of transient neonatal hypo- and hyperthyroidism on the myoglobin gene expression pattern. Cardiac ventricle and skeletal muscles of Wistar rats at 7-42 days of life were quickly removed, and myoglobin mRNA was determined by Northern blot analysis. Rats were treated with propylthiouracil (5-10 mg/100 g) and triiodothyronine (0.5-50 µg/100 g) for 5, 15, or 30 days after birth to induce hypo- and hyperthyroidism and euthanized either just after treatment or at 90 days. During postnatal (P) days 7-28, the ventricle myoglobin mRNA remained unchanged, but it gradually increased in skeletal muscle (12-fold). Triiodothyronine treatment, from days P0-P5, increased the skeletal muscle myoglobin mRNA 1.5- to 4.5-fold; a 2.5-fold increase was observed in ventricle muscle, but only when triiodothyronine treatment was extended to day P15. Conversely, hypothyroidism at P5 markedly decreased (60%) ventricular myoglobin mRNA. Moreover, transient hyperthyroidism in the neonatal period increased ventricle myoglobin mRNA (2-fold), and decreased heart rate (5%), fast muscle myoglobin mRNA (30%) and body weight (20%) in adulthood. Transient hypothyroidism in the neonatal period also permanently decreased fast muscle myoglobin mRNA (30%) and body weight (14%). These results indicated that changes in triiodothyronine supply in the neonatal period alter the myoglobin expression program in ventricle and skeletal muscle, leading to specific physiological repercussions and alterations in other parameters in adulthood.