In the present study, to elucidate the influences of the deficiency of teeth on the masseter muscle, we analyzed changes in the expression of MyHC isoform mRNAs during postnatal development in mi/mi mice using real-time PCR. By 8 weeks of age, MyHC I had nearly disappeared in the +/+ mice, while it was still present in the mi/mi, and the level of MyHC I mRNA in the mi/mi was 5.1-fold higher than that in the +/+ (p<0.01). The levels of MyHC IIx mRNAs in the mi/mi mice were 41 ~ 55% lower than those in the +/+ at both 3 weeks and 4 weeks of age (p<0.05). No significant difference in the expression of MyHC IIa and IIb mRNAs in the masseter muscle was found between the mi/mi and +/+. From these results, we speculate that the deficiency of teeth affects the masseter muscles during the postnatal development.
Keywords: Masseter Muscle, Postnatal Development, Microphthalmic Mouse, mRNA.