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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2013, Article ID 540370, 10 pages
Review Article

Cytokines and Chemokines as Regulators of Skeletal Muscle Inflammation: Presenting the Case of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Laboratory for Myopathology, Department of Neurology and Neuromuscular Reference Center, Ghent University Hospital, De Pintelaan 185, 9000 Ghent, Belgium

Received 12 July 2013; Accepted 9 September 2013

Academic Editor: Charles J. Malemud

Copyright © 2013 Boel De Paepe and Jan L. De Bleecker. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Duchenne muscular dystrophy is a severe inherited muscle disease that affects 1 in 3500 boys worldwide. Infiltration of skeletal muscle by inflammatory cells is an important facet of disease pathophysiology and is strongly associated with disease severity in the individual patient. In the chronic inflammation that characterizes Duchenne muscle, cytokines and chemokines are considered essential activators and recruiters of inflammatory cells. In addition, they provide potential beneficiary effects on muscle fiber damage control and tissue regeneration. In this review, current knowledge of cytokine and chemokine expression in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and its relevant animal disease models is listed, and implications for future therapeutic avenues are discussed.