A dystrophin-containing glycoprotein complex (DGC) links the basal lamina surrounding each muscle fibre to the fibre's cytoskeleton, providing both structural support and a scaffold for signalling molecules. Mutations in genes encoding several DGC components disrupt the complex and lead to muscular dystrophy. Here we show that mice deficient in alpha-dystrobrevin, a cytoplasmic protein of the DGC, exhibit skeletal and cardiac myopathies. Analysis of double and triple mutants indicates that alpha-dystrobrevin acts largely through the DGC. Structural components of the DGC are retained in the absence of alpha-dystrobrevin, but a DGC-associated signalling protein, nitric oxide synthase, is displaced from the membrane and nitric-oxide-mediated signalling is impaired. These results indicate that both signalling and structural functions of the DGC are required for muscle stability, and implicate alpha-dystrobrevin in the former.
SciCrunch is a data sharing and display platform. Anyone can create a custom portal where they can select searchable subsets of hundreds of data sources, brand their web pages and create their community. SciCrunch will push data updates automatically to all portals on a weekly basis. User communities can also add their own data to scicrunch, however this is not currently a free service.