Shihuan Kuang


Shihuan Kuang's Main Page

Research Program

Muscle development and regeneration

Skeletal muscles have a remarkable regenerative capacity due to myogenic differentiation of satellite cells. We have recently shown that the satellite cell niche contains heterogeneous subpopulations of committed myogenic progenitors and non-committed stem cells. This hierarchical composition of readily differentiating progenitors and self-renewable stem cells assures the extraordinary regenerative capacity of skeletal muscles while maintaining a sustainable pool of satellite cells. One focus of my lab is to explore the signaling mechanisms that differentially regulate these subpopulations of satellite cells and how such mechanisms are employed in muscle regeneration.

Adult stem cell biology

A balance between self-renewal and differentiation is crucial for stem cell maintenance and tissue homeostasis. However, mechanisms governing stem cell fate are poorly understood. One goal of our research is to address this question using muscle satellite cells as a model system. Several recent studies have revealed an important role of asymmetric division in satellite cell self-renewal. We are particularly interested in the mechanisms involved in the asymmetric division of muscle satellite cells.

Neuromuscular diseases

Many degenerative neuromuscular diseases are due to defective motor neurons and/or muscle fibers. One potential treatment of these pathological conditions is stem cell-based therapies. Currently, several limitations, including poor survival, poor migration and host rejection, are associated the use of satellite cells and other muscle stem cells in the treatment of muscular diseases. We are interested in the identification, isolation and manipulation of highly efficient myogenic stem cells for successful stem cell-based therapies to treat neuromuscular diseases.

Recent Research Publications:

  1. Seale P, Bjork B, Yang W, Kajimura S, Chin S, Kuang S, Scime A, Devarakonda S, Conroe H, Erdjument-Bromage H, Tempst P, Rudnicki MA, Beier DR, Spiegelman BM. 2008. PRDM16 Controls a Brown Fat/Skeletal Muscle Switch. Nature, 454:961-7 (Article, Cover Picture).

  2. Goldberg JI, Doran SA, Shartau RB, Pon JR, Ali DW, Tam R, Kuang S. 2008. Integrative biology of an embryonic respiratory behavior in pond snails: the "embryonic stirbar hypothesis". J Exp Biol 211:1729-36.

  3. Kuang S, Rudnicki MA. 2008. Emerging biology of satellite cells and their therapeutic potentials. Trends Mol Med 14: 82-91.

  4. Kuang S, Gillespie M, Rudnicki MA. 2008. Niche regulation of muscle satellite cell self-renewal and differentiation. Cell Stem Cell 2: 22-31.

  5. Holterman CE, Le Grand F, Kuang S, Seale P, Rudnicki MA. 2007. Megf10 regulates the progression of the satellite cell myogenic program. J Cell Biol 179:911-22.

  6. Kuang S, Kuroda K, Le Grand F, Rudnicki MA. 2007. Asymmetric self-renewal and commitment of satellite stem cells in muscle. Cell 129:999-1010.

  7. Kuang S*, Charge SB*, Seale P, Huh M, Rudnicki MA. 2006. Distinct roles for Pax7 and Pax3 in adult regenerative myogenesis. J Cell Biol 172:103-13. *equal contribution

  8. Johnson JD, Kuang S, Misler S, Polonsky KS. 2004. Ryanodine receptors in human pancreatic beta cells: localization and effects on insulin secretion. FASEB J 18:878-80.

  9. Koss R, Diefenbach TJ, Kuang S, Doran SA, Goldberg JI. 2003. Coordinated Development of Identified Serotonergic Neurons and Their Target Ciliary Cells in Helisoma trivolvis Embryos. J Com. Neurol 457:313-25.

  10. Kuang S, Regnier M, Goldberg JI. 2002. Long-term culture of decapsulated gastropod embryos: A transplantation study. Biol Bull 203:278-88.

  11. Kuang S, Doran SA, Wilson RJA, Goss GG, Goldberg JI. 2002. Serotonergic Sensory-Motor Neurons Mediate a Behavioral Response to Hypoxia in Helisoma trivolvis Embryos. J Neurobiol 52:73-83.

  12. Kuang S, Goldberg JI. 2001. Laser Ablation Reveals Regulation of Ciliary Activity by Serotonergic Neurons in Molluscan Embryos. J Neurobiol 47:1-15.