2019 Volume 8 Issue 2 Pages 61-71
Skeletal muscle atrophy is known to occur in various conditions, and is commonly the result of prolonged disuse of the muscle. However, no therapeutic treatment to date has been shown to completely prevent this problem. Numerous studies suggest that prevention of inactivity-related oxidative stress can delay or attenuate the progression of disuse muscle atrophy in rodents. Based on this evidence, many researchers have tested the hypothesis that dietary supplementation with antioxidants would be an effective countermeasure for disuse muscle atrophy. We have recently demonstrated that oral supplementation with astaxanthin, a potent natural antioxidant known as a carotenoid pigment found in marine organisms, might protect against disuse muscle atrophy, in part by preventing myonuclear apoptosis and myofibrillar protein degradation. Although the precise mechanisms underlying these processes are not completely understood, it appears that astaxanthin supplementation might be an effective and potential therapeutic countermeasure to protect against disuse skeletal muscle atrophy. This review summarizes the potential protective role of astaxanthin against skeletal muscle disuse, providing a novel insight into prevention of disuse-induced skeletal muscle atrophy.