Research Paper Volume 13, Issue 12 pp 16834—16858

The consequences of a high-calorie diet background before calorie restriction on skeletal muscles in a mouse model

Martin Maldonado1, , Jianying Chen1, , Yang Lujun2, , Huiqin Duan1, , Mazhar Ali Raja1, , Ting Qu1, , Tianhua Huang1, , Jiang Gu1, , Ying Zhong1, &, ,

  • 1 Chengdu Jinxin Institute of Reproductive Medicine and Genetics, Chengdu Jinjiang Hospital for Maternal and Child Health Care, Chengdu 610066, China
  • 2 Translational Medical Center, Second Affiliated Hospital of Shantou University Medical College, Shantou 515041, Guangdong, P.R. China

Received: December 14, 2020       Accepted: May 31, 2021       Published: June 24, 2021
How to Cite

Copyright: © 2021 Maldonado et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


The beneficial effects of calorie restriction (CR) are numerous. However, there is no scientific evidence about how a high-calorie diet (HCD) background influences the mechanisms underlying CR on skeletal muscles in an experimental mouse model.

Herein we present empirical evidence showing significant interactions between HCD (4 months) and CR (3 months).

Pectoralis major and quadriceps femoris vastus medialis, in the experimental and control groups, displayed metabolic and physiologic heterogeneity and remarkable plasticity, according to the dietary interventions.

HCD-CR not only altered genetic activation patterns of satellite SC markers but also boosted the expression of myogenic regulatory factors and key activators of mitochondrial biogenesis, which in turn were also associated with metabolic fiber transition.

Our data prompt us to theorize that the effects of CR may vary according to the physiologic, metabolic, and genetic peculiarities of the skeletal muscle described here and that INTM/IM lipid infiltration and tissue-specific fuel-energy status (demand/supply) both hold dependent-interacting roles with other key anti-aging mechanisms triggered by CR.

Systematic integration of an HCD with CR appears to bring potential benefits for skeletal muscle function and energy metabolism. However, at this stage of our research, an optimal balance between the two dietary conditions, where anti-aging effects can be accomplished, is under intensive investigation in combination with other tissues and organs at different levels of organization within the organ system.


CR: Calorie restriction; HC: High calorie control group; HC-CR: High calorie-calorie restriction group; HCD: High calorie diet; IM: Intra-myocellular; INTM: Inter-myocellular; HMW: High molecular weight; MRFs: Myogenic regulatory factors; PM: Pectoralis major; QF-VM: Quadriceps femoris vastus medialis; SC: Stem cells; SD: Standard diet control group; SD-CR: Standard diet-calorie restriction group.