Pericytes in muscular dystrophies
Authors listLouise Anne Moyle Francesco Saverio Tedesco Sara Benedetti
The muscular dystrophies are an heterogeneous group of inherited myopathies characterised by the progressive wasting of skeletal muscle tissue. Pericytes have been shown to make muscle in vitro and to contribute to skeletal muscle regeneration in several animal models, although recent data has shown this to be controversial. In fact, some pericyte subpopulations have been shown to contribute to fibrosis and adipose deposition in muscle. In this chapter, we explore the identity and the multifaceted role of pericytes in dystrophic muscle, potential therapeutic applications and the current need to overcome the hurdles of characterisation (both to identify pericyte subpopulations and track cell fate), to prevent deleterious differentiation towards myogenic-inhibiting subpopulations, and to improve cell proliferation and engraftment efficacy.