Lynch laboratory: Basic and clinical myology

Research Overview

photo of Professor Gordon Lynch
Professor Gordon Lynch

Our lab investigates the mechanisms underlying skeletal muscle wasting and weakness and develops and tests therapies to counteract muscle wasting disorders.

The lab's research is focused on ageing (sarcopenia), muscle diseases (such as the muscular dystrophies), and cancer cachexia. We also investigate novel approaches for improving muscle repair after injury.  Our work has application for many other muscle wasting conditions including: sepsis and other forms of metabolic stress; denervation, disuse, inactivity, unloading or microgravity; burns, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-acquired immunodeficiency syndrome; chronic kidney or heart failure; and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Our studies involve investigation of molecular pathways regulating muscle size and function with a translational approach of cell culture experiments complemented by studies utilizing different animal models for these muscle wasting conditions.  Our ultimate goal is to apply this information to human patients in collaborative studies with orthodontists and maxillofacial surgeons, anaesthetists, oncologists, critical care physicians, and plastic and reconstructive surgeons.

Current projects are focussed on therapeutic interventions to alleviate muscle wasting.


Dr James Ryall, Post Doctoral Fellow
Dr Kristy Swiderski, Post Doctoral Fellow
Dr Kate Murphy, Post Doctoral Fellow
Fiona Colarossi,Lab Manager
Megan Hepworth, Research Assistant
Jennifer Trieu, Research Assistant
Timur Naim , Research Assistant
Victoria Chhen, Research Assistant

Hai Ly, PhD Student
Savant Thakur, PhD Student
Grace Chou, Masters Student

photo of Lynch lab personnel 2015

Research Publications

  • Gehrig SM, van der Poel C, Sayer TA, Schertzer JD, Henstridge DC, Church JE, Lamon S, Russell AP, Davies KE, Febbraio MA, Lynch GS. (2012). Hsp72 preserves muscle function and slows progression of severe muscular dystrophy. Nature 4: 484(7394), 394-398.
  • Swiderski K, Shaffer SA, Gallis B, Odom GL, Arnett AL, Edgar JS, Baum DM, Chee, A,  Naim T, Gregorevic P, Murphy KT, Moody J, Goodlett DR, Lynch GS, Chamberlain JS. (2014). Phosphorylation within the cysteine-rich region of dystrophin enhances its association with β-dystroglycan and identifies a potential novel therapeutic target for skeletal muscle wasting. Human Molecular Genetics 23: 6697-6711.
  • Ham DJ, Caldow MK, Lynch GS, Koopman R. (2014). Leucine as a treatment for muscle wasting: a critical review. Clinical Nutrition Dec;33(6): 937-45.
  • Murphy KT, Ham DJ, Church JE, Naim T, Trieu J, Williams DA, Lynch GS. (2012). Parvalbumin gene transfer impairs skeletal muscle contractility in old mice. Hum Gene Ther 23: 824-836.
  • Gehrig SM, van der Poel C, Hoeflich A, Naim T, Lynch GS, Metzger F. (2012). Therapeutic potential of PEGylated insulin-like growth factor I for skeletal muscle disease evaluated in two murine models of muscular dystrophy. Growth Horm IGF Res 22(2): 69-75.
  • Murphy KT, Lynch GS. (2012). Editorial update on emerging drugs for cancer cachexia. Expert Opin Emerg Drugs 17(1): 5-9.

Selected publications from previous years (see PubMed for full list)

  • Metzger F, Sajid W, Saenger S, Staudenmaier C, van der Poel C, Sobottka B, Schuler A, Sawitzky M, Poirier R, Tuerck D, Schick E, Schaubmar A, Hesse F, Amrein K, Loetscher H, Lynch GS, Hoeflich A, De Meyts P, Schoenfeld HJ. (2011). Separation of fast from slow anabolism by site-specific PEGylation of insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I). J Biol Chem 286(22): 19501-10.
  • Koopman R, Gehrig SM, Leger B, Trieu J, Walrand S, Murphy KT, Lynch GS. (2010). Cellular mechanisms underlying temporal changes in skeletal muscle protein synthesis and breakdown during chronic {beta}-adrenoceptor stimulation in mice. J Physiol, 588(Pt 23): 4811-23.
  • Murphy KT, Koopman R, Naim T, Léger B, Trieu J, Ibebunjo C, Lynch GS. (2010). Antibody-directed myostatin inhibition in 21-mo-old mice reveals novel roles for myostatin signaling in skeletal muscle structure and function. FASEB J, 24(11): 4433-42.
  • Murphy KT, Ryall JG, Snell SM, Nair L, Koopman R, Krasney PA, Ibebunjo C, Holden KS, Loria PM, Salatto CT, Lynch GS. (2010). Antibody-directed myostatin inhibition improves diaphragm pathology in young but not adult dystrophic mdx mice. Am J Pathol, 176(5): 2425-34.
  • Gehrig SM, Koopman R, Naim T, Tjoakarfa C, Lynch GS. (2010). Making fast-twitch dystrophic muscles bigger protects them from contraction injury and attenuates the dystrophic pathology, Am J Pathol, 176(1): 29-33.
  • Ryall JG, Lynch GS. (2008). The potential and the pitfalls of beta-adrenoceptor agonists for the management of skeletal muscle wasting. Pharmacol Ther, 120(3): 219-32.
  • Lynch GS, Ryall JG (2008). Role of b-adrenoceptor signaling in skeletal muscle: Implications for muscle wasting and disease. Physiol Rev, 88: 729-767.