The mRNA expression levels of key genes (Smads, MSTN, and MyoG) in the TGF-β/Smad signaling pathway in Hu sheep at different growth stages (2 days, 2 months, and 6 months of age) and in different skeletal muscles (longissimus dorsi muscle and soleus muscle) and different genders were detected; and correlation of the Smad family (Smad2, Smad3, Smad4, and Smad7), MSTN, MyoG expressions was analyzed in Hu sheep.
Prokaryotic expression technology was used to express maltose-binding protein binding myostatin (MSTN) propeptide fusion protein. Six disease-free Altay lambs were used in this study. The right leg gastrocnemii were injected with MSTN recombinant propeptide protein. The left leg gastrocnemii (the control group) were injected with the same dose of phosphate based saline. The lambs were fed during four months under the same conditions and then slaughtered. Gastrocnemius samples were hematoxylin-eosin stained and the size of the muscle fibers was measured.