“I branched out of my traditional cardiac research project to include skeletal muscle,” says Sadayappan, who oversees a team of postdoctoral fellows, graduate and medical students in his College of Medicine laboratory. “The structure and functions of [the protein] have similarities but are not identical in heart and skeletal muscles.”
Currently, treatments of distal arthrogryposis diseases can range from simple procedures such an Achilles tendon release to more moderate methods such as elbow and knee surgeries. Other treatments are more involved including surgeries to lengthen limbs or correct spines.
Sadayappan says myosin binding protein-C (MyBP-C) is essential for muscle formation, function and regulation and exists in both heart and skeletal muscle. In skeletal muscle two paralogs (genes) of the myosin binding protein-C, slow skeletal (sMyBP-C) and fast skeletal (fMyBP-C) are present and they are distinct from what is seen in heart muscle. Much of Sadayappan’s previous research has looked at myosin binding protein-C in heart muscles and its role in the development of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in heart patients.