The Vechetti Laboratory investigates skeletal muscle regulation in the contexts of exercise, aging, and diseases. We are also actively investigating skeletal muscle-derived extracellular vesicles in the context of exercise and inflammatory diseases.  


Our group is interested in understanding how skeletal muscle mass is regulated during exercise and how it regulates whole-body adaptations following exercise. Specifically, we are focusing on:

  1. EV biology (biogenesis, cargo, and uptake).
  2. Metabolic pathways associated with muscle growth (e.g., Pentose Phosphate Pathway).
  3. The role of miRNAs in skeletal muscle.

Lab Members

Ivan Vechetti, Assistant Professor

Shengyi Fei, M.S. Student
Research: MicroRNAs and Skeletal muscle hypertrophy

Shengyi is a graduate student at UNL and has received his Bachelor's degree in Food Science and Technology from both the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Northwest A&F University. He joined Dr. Vechetti's lab in 2021 as a Graduate Research Assistant.  

Filipe Guimaraes Goulart, Undergraduate Student
Research: MicroRNAs and skeletal muscle adaptation

Filipe is a junior majoring in nutrition, exercise, and health sciences at UNL. He joined the Vechetti Laboratory in the fall of 2021 as an undergraduate research volunteer. He has successfully obtained funding from UCARE.

Tesha Kerr, M.S. Student
Research: Extracellular Vesicles and Exercise

Tesha is a graduate student at UNL and has received her Bachelors degree in Human Nutrition from Southern Utah University. She joined the Vechetti lab in January 2022 as a Graduate Research Assistant.  

Mariah McCashland, M.S. Student
Research: Extracellular vesicles and exercise 
Mariah is a graduate student at UNL and recevied her Bachelor's degree in Neuroscience from University of California Los Angeles. She joined Dr. Vechetti's lab in the summer of 2022 as a graduate research volunteer.
Blake Rule, Undergraduate Student
Research: Extracellular vesicles and lipids in skeletal muscle

Blake is a postbaccalaureate student at UNL and has received his Bachelor's degree in Nutrition Science. He joined Dr. Vechetti's lab in 2021 as an Undergraduate Research Assistant.

Raechel Sherrick, M.S. Student
Research: Metabolism and skeletal muscle hypertrophy

Raechel is a graduate assistant at UNL and has received her Bachelor's degree in Exercise Science from Truman State University. She joined Dr. Vechetti's lab as a Graduate Research Assistant in the spring of 2022.

 In the News

How Weight Training Burns Fat - The New York Times, July 21, 2021

 Selected Publications


  1. Abraham Nilsson, Anna Maria Nerhall, Ivan Vechetti, Lotta Fornander, Simon Wiklund, Bjorn Alkner, Jorg Schilcher, Ferdinand von Walden -A prophylactic subcutaneous dose of the anticoagulant tinzaparin does not influence qPCR-based assessment of circulating levels of miRNA in humans. PLOS ONE. November 2022. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0277008
  2. Leticia Estevam Engel, Francilene Lima Agostinho de Souza, Ines Cristina Giometti, Katashi Okoshi, Thaoan Bruno Mariano, Natalia Zamberlan Ferreira, Dyovana Gomes Pinheiro, Rafael Stuani Floriano, Andreo Fernando Aguiar, Antônio Carlos Cicogna, Ivan José Vechetti Jr, Francis LopesPacagnelli -The high-intensity interval training mitigates the cardiac remodeling in spontaneously hypertensive rats. ScienceDirect. September 2022. doi:10.1016/j.lfs.2022.120959
  3. Henning Wackerhage, Ivan J. Vechetti, Philipp Baumert, Sebastian Gehlert, Lore Becker, Richard T. Jaspers & Martin Hrabe de Angelis -Does a Hypertrophying Muscle Fibre Reprgramme its Metabolism Similar to a Cancer Cell? SpringerLink. April 2022. doi:10.1007.s40279-022-01676-1


  1. Valentino TR, Figueiredo VC, Mobley CB, McCarthy JJ, Vechetti IJ Jr. -Evidence of myomiR regulation of the pentose phosphate pathway during mechanical load-induced hypertrophy. Physiological Reports. December 2021. doi: 10.14814/phy2.15137
  2. Valentino TR, Vechetti IJ Jr, Mobley CB, Dungan C, Golden LR, Gho J, McCarthy JJ. -Dysbiosis of the Gut Microbiome Impairs Skeletal Muscle Adaptation to Exercise. The Journal of Physiology. September 2021. doi:10.1113/JP281788
  3. Vechetti IJ Jr*, Wen Y*, Hoffman JF, Alimov AP, Vergara VB, Kalinich JF, Gaitens JM, Hines SE, McDiarmid MA, McCarthy JJ & Peterson CA. -Urine miRNAs as potential biomarkers for systemic reactions induced by exposure to embedded metal. Biomarkers in Medicine. September 2021. doi: 10.2217/bmm-2021-0120
  4. Valentino TR, Rule BD, Mobley CB, Nikolova-Karakashian M, Vechetti IJ. -Skeletal Muscle Cell Growth Alters the Lipid Composition of Extracellular Vesicles. Membranes (Basel). 2021 Aug 12;11(8):619. doi: 10.3390/membranes11080619
  5. von Walden F*, Vechetti IJ Jr*, Englund D, Figueiredo VC, Fernandez-Gonzalo R, Murach KA, Pingel J, McCarthy JJ, Stål P, Pontén E. -Reduced mitochondrial DNA and OXPHOS protein content in skeletal muscle of children with cerebral palsy. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology. June 2021. doi: 10.1111/dmcn.14964
  6. Figueiredo VC, Wen Y, Alkner B, Fernandez-Gonzalo R, Norrbom J, Vechetti IJ Jr, Valentino T, Mobley CB, Zentner GE, Peterson CA, McCarthy JJ, Murach KA, von Walden F. -Genetic and Epigenetic Regulation of Skeletal Muscle Ribosome Biogenesis with Exercise. J Physiol. 2021 Apr 29. doi: 10.1113/JP281244
  7. Vechetti IJ Jr, Peck BD, Wen Y, Walton RG, Alimov AP, Valentino TR, Dungan CM, Van Pelt DW, von Walden F, Alkner B, Peterson CA and McCarthy JJ. -Mechanical overload-induced muscle-derived extracellular vesicles promote adipose lipolysis. FASEB J. 2021 Jun;35(6):e21644. doi: 10.1096/fj.202100242R
  8. Vann CG, Morton RW, Mobley CB, Vechetti IJ Jr, Ferguson BK, Haun CT, Osburn SC, Sexton CL, Fox C, Oikawa SY, McGlory C, Young KC, Phillips SM, McCarthy JJ, Roberts MD. -An intron variant of the GLI Family Zinc Finger 3 (GLI3) gene differentiates resistance training-induced muscle fiber hypertrophy in younger men. FASEB J. 2021 May;35(5):e21587. doi: 10.1096/fj.202100113RR
  9. Murach KA, Peck BD, Policastro RA, Vechetti IJ Jr, Van Pelt DW, Dungan CM, Denes LT, Fu X, Brightwell CR, Zentner GE, Dupont-Versteegden EE, Richards CI, Wang ET, Smith JJ, Fry CS, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA. -Early Satellite Cell Communication Creates a Permissive Environment for Long-Term Hypertrophic Growth. iScience. 2021 Mar 29;24(4):102372. doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2021.102372. eCollection 2021 Apr 23.


  1. Mobley CB, Vechetti IJ Jr, Valentino TR, McCarthy JJ. -CORP: The use of transgenic mice for studying skeletal muscle physiology. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2020 May 1;128(5):1227-1239. doi: 10.1152/japplphysiol.00021.2020
  2. Vechetti IJ Jr, Valentino TR, Mobley CB, McCarthy JJ. -The role of extracellular vesicles in skeletal muscle and systematic adaption to exercise. J Physiol. 2020 Jan 15. doi: 10.1113/JP278929
  3. Wen Y, Vechetti IJ Jr, Alimov AP, Hoffman JF, Vergara VB, Kalinich JF, McCarthy JJ, and Peterson CA. -Time course analysis of the effect of embedded metal on skeletal muscle gene expression. Physiol Genomics. 2020 Oct 5. doi: 10.1152/physiolgenomics.00096.2020
  4. Dungan CM, Valentino TR, Vechetti IJ Jr, Zdunek CJ, Murphy MP, Lin A, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA. -Exercise-mediated alteration of hippocampal Dicer mRNA and miRNAs is associated with lower BACE1 gene expression and Aβ1-42 in female 3xTg-AD mice. Journal of Neurophysiology, 2020. doi: 10.1152/jn.00503.2020
  5. Wen Y, Vechetti IJ Jr, Valentino TR, McCarthy JJ. -High-Yield Skeletal Muscle Protein Recovery from TRIzol® after RNA and DNA Extraction. BioTechniques. 2020 Aug 11. doi: 10.2144/btn-2020-0083
  6. Van Pelt D, Vechetti IJ Jr, Lawrence M, Van Pelt K, Patel P, Miller B, Butterfield T, and Dupont-Versteegden E. -Serum extracellular vesicle miR-203a-3p content is associated with skeletal muscle mass and protein turnover during disuse atrophy and regrowth. American Journal of Physiology Cell Physiology. 2020 Aug 1;319(2):C419-C431. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00223.2020
  7. Murach KA, Vechetti IJ Jr, Van Pelt DW, Crow SE, Dungan CM, Figueiredo VC, Kosmac K, Fu X, Richards CI, Fry CS, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA. -Fusion-Independent Satellite Cell Communication to Muscle Fibers During Load-Induced Hypertrophy. Functions. 2020;1(1): zqaa009. doi: 10.1093/function/zqaa009
  8. Fernandez GF, Ferreira JH, Vechetti IJ Jr, Moraes LN, Cury SS, Freire PP, Gutierrez J, Ferretti R, Dal-Pai-Silva M, Rogatto Sr and Carvalho RF. -MicroRNA-mRNA co-sequencing identifies transcriptional and posttranscriptional regulatory networks underlying muscle wasting in cancer cachexia. Frontiers in Genetics. 2020 May 29;11:541. doi: 10.3389/fgene.2020.00541
  9. Englund D, Murach KA, Dungan CM, Figueiredo VC, Vechetti IJ Jr, Dupont-Versteegden E, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA. -Depletion of resident muscle stem cells negatively impacts running volume, physical function, and muscle hypertrophy in response to lifelong physical activity. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2020 Apr 22. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00090.2020


  1. Figueiredo VC, Englund DA, Vechetti IJ Jr, Alimov A, Peterson CA, McCarthy JJ. -Phosphorylation of eIF4E is dispensable for skeletal muscle hypertrophy. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2019 Oct 9. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00380.2019
  2. Hoffman JF, Vechetti IJ Jr, Alimov AP, Kalinich JF, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA. -Hydrophobic sand is a viable method of urine collection from the rat for extracellular vesicle biomarker analysis. Mol Genet Metab Rep. 2019. doi: 10.1016/j.ymgmr.2019.100505
  3. Parry HA, Mobley CB, Mumford PW, Romero MA, Haun CT, Zhang Y, Roberson PA, Zempleni J, Ferrando AA, Vechetti IJ Jr, McCarthy JJ, Young KC, Roberts MD, Kavazis AN. -Bovine Milk Extracellular Vesicles (EVs) Modification Elicits Skeletal Muscle Growth in Rats. Front Physiol. 2019. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2019.00436
  4. Vechetti IJ Jr, Wen Y, Chaillou T, Murach KA, Alimov AP, Figueiredo VC, Dal-Pai-Silva M, McCarthy JJ. -Life-long reduction in myomiR expression does not adversely affect skeletal muscle morphology. Scientific Reports. 2019. doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-41476-8
  5. Dungan CM, Murach KA, Frick KK, Jones SR, Crow SE, Englund DA, Vechetti IJ, Jr, Figuieredo VC, Levitan BM, Satin J, McCarthy JJ, Peterson CA. -Elevated Myonuclear Density During Skeletal Muscle Hypertrophy In Response to Training Is Reversed During Detraining. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2019. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00050.2019


  1. Clotilde T, et al. -Minimal information for studies of extracellular vesicles 2018 (MISEV2018): a position statement of the International Society for Extracellular Vesicles and update of the MISEV2014 guidelines. Journal of Extracellular Vesicles, Volume 7, Nov. 2018 - Issue 1, DOI: 10.1080/20013078.2018.1535750