Morpholino-mediated Knockdown of DUX4 Toward Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy Therapeutics

Jennifer C.J. Chen, Oliver D. King, Yuanfan Zhang, Nicholas P. Clayton, Carrie Spencer, Bruce M. Wentworth, Charles P. Emerson, Kathryn R. Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Derepression of DUX4 in skeletal muscle has emerged as a likely cause of pathology in facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD). Here we report on the use of antisense phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligonucleotides to suppress DUX4 expression and function in FSHD myotubes and xenografts. The most effective was phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligonucleotide FM10, which targets the polyadenylation signal of DUX4. FM10 had no significant cell toxicity, and RNA-seq analyses of FSHD and control myotubes revealed that FM10 down-regulated many transcriptional targets of DUX4, without overt off-target effects. Electroporation of FM10 into FSHD patient muscle xenografts in mice also down-regulated DUX4 and DUX4 targets. These findings demonstrate the potential of antisense phosphorodiamidate morpholino oligonucleotides as an FSHD therapeutic option.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1405-1411
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Therapy
Volume24
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2016

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery

Cite this

Chen, J. C. J., King, O. D., Zhang, Y., Clayton, N. P., Spencer, C., Wentworth, B. M., Emerson, C. P., & Wagner, K. R. (2016). Morpholino-mediated Knockdown of DUX4 Toward Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy Therapeutics. Molecular Therapy, 24(8), 1405-1411. https://doi.org/10.1038/mt.2016.111