Understanding Muscle Atrophy and FI in Massive RCTs

Award-winning research may lead to improved outcomes after rotator cuff repair

Brian Feeley, MD, received the 2014 Kappa Delta Young Investigator Award for his pioneering research into the molecular pathways that govern muscle atrophy and fatty infiltration (FI) in rotator cuff tears (RCTs). Throughout a 5-year period, Dr. Feeley and his fellow researchers developed a small animal model of RCTs and used this model to identify the ways in which RCTs affect surrounding muscle.

“We found that an intracellular signaling pathway believed to be critical in regulating muscle mass in normal muscle (Akt/mTOR) has a central role in the development of muscle atrophy and FI through its modulation of downstream effectors,” noted Dr. Feeley. “Our results also showed that inhibiting this pathway can effectively decrease the development of FI.”

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