Background: Diabetes is associated with loss of skeletal muscle mass and function. Specifically, diabetes may affect the function of oxidative muscle fibers with lower fatigability and higher oxidative capacity in skeletal muscle. The effects of SGLT2 inhibition on skeletal muscle metabolism and function in patients with type 2 diabetes remain unclear.

Methods: Male db/db (diabetic) and db/+ (non-diabetic) mice at 8 weeks of age were fed a normal chow diet or a diet containing canagliflozin (CANA) for 4 weeks. Grip strength and running distance were assessed during CANA treatment. At the end of CANA treatment, we measured muscle weight and analyzed metabolites in skeletal muscle.

Results: The weights of the oxidative soleus and glycolytic extensor digitorum longus muscles were reduced by approximately 50% in the diabetic group compared to the non-diabetic group, but neither was altered by CANA treatment. Grip strength did not differ between the CANA-treated diabetic, diabetic, and non-diabetic groups. However, the running distance decreased in the diabetic group compared to the non-diabetic group (89 ± 60 m vs. 1980 ± 276 m). This was partially restored by CANA treatment (89 ± 60 m vs. 415 ± 140 m). Metabolomic analysis revealed that long-chain acyl-CoA increased and medium-chain and short-chain acyl-CoA decreased in diabetic soleus muscle. In contrast, CANA treatment increased medium-chain and short-chain acyl-CoA. Furthermore, CANA increased 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide-1-β-D-ribofuranosyl 5’-monophosphate (AICARP), an endogenous AMPK activator, by approximately 3-fold in diabetic soleus muscle with increased levels of AMPK phosphorylation (Thr172).

Conclusion: These results suggest that SGLT2 inhibitors may activate the AICARP/AMPK pathway and improve impaired oxidative muscle function in patients with type 2 diabetes.


S. Nakamura: None. Y. Miyachi: None. H. Yokomizo: None. H. Otsuka: None. R. Sakamoto: None. M. Takahashi: None. Y. Izumi: None. T. Miyazawa: None. T. Bamba: None. Y. Ogawa: None.

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