Myostatin and other musculoskeletal markers in lung transplant recipients

Katharina Kerschan-Schindl, Gerold Ebenbichler, Wolfgang Gruther, Ursula Föger-Samwald, Stefan Kudlacek, Janina Patsch, Andreas Gleiss, Peter Jaksch, Walter Klepetko, Peter Pietschmann

Research output: Journal article (peer-reviewed)Journal article

2 Citations (Scopus)


Recipients of lung transplantation (LuTx) may experience impaired muscle function and bone metabolism even after rehabilitation. We investigated the potential use of musculoskeletal markers in identifying the impairment of muscle function and bone function in these patients. Biochemical parameters, bodily functions, and lung function of 37 LuTx recipients were evaluated at the time of their discharge from the hospital stay and about 6 months later. The biomarkers were also assessed in 30 healthy age and gender distribution-matched controls. Compared to controls, the negative muscle regulator myostatin was elevated in LuTx recipients at baseline and follow-up, whereas its opponent follistatin only showed a group-specific difference at follow-up. LuTx recipients had reduced serum levels of sclerostin and increased levels of dickkopf 1 and periostin. Lung function and physical function were improved during follow-up. The change in lung function was correlated with the change in chair-rising time and the 6-min walking test. At follow-up, all musculoskeletal markers of LuTx recipients differed from those of controls, thus reflecting their still reduced lung function and bodily functions. Among the tested biomarkers, myostatin, sclerostin, dickkopf 1, and periostin were useful to detect impaired musculoskeletal function in LuTx recipients. Myostatin may serve as a target of treatment in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-85
Number of pages9
JournalClinical and Experimental Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01 Feb 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Biomarkers/blood
  • Bone Morphogenetic Proteins/blood
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules/blood
  • Female
  • Follistatin/blood
  • Genetic Markers
  • Humans
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/blood
  • Lung Transplantation
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases/pathology
  • Myostatin/blood
  • Prospective Studies
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Transplant Recipients
  • Young Adult


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