Metabolic flexibility of muscle tissue describes the capacity to use glucose or lipids as energy substrates and its disruption is associated with metabolic dysfunction. Cancer-induced cachexia is a metabolic syndrome linked with muscle wasting, changes in muscle energy metabolism and lower life expectancy in cancer patients. The molecular mechanisms driving metabolic changes in muscle, however, are poorly characterized. Here, using a Drosophila model of systemic metabolic dysfunction triggered by yorkie-induced gut tumors, we identify the transcription factor REPTOR as a key regulator of energy metabolism in muscle. We show that REPTOR is upregulated in muscles of adult flies with gut yorkie-tumors, where it is necessary to modulate glucose metabolism. REPTOR expression in muscles is induced by ImpL2, a tumor-derived insulin binding protein that reduces systemic insulin signaling, or by nutritional restriction. Further, in vitro and in vivo studies indicate that high activity of REPTOR is sufficient to increase glucose content, transcriptionally repress phosphofructokinase and increase mitochondrial respiration. Consistent with the fly studies, higher levels of CREBRF, the mammalian ortholog of REPTOR, reduce glycolysis in mouse myotubes while promoting an oxidative phenotype. Altogether, our results implicate REPTOR/CREBRF as key regulators of muscle metabolism and metabolic flexibility that share a conserved function as repressors of glycolysis and promoters of oxidative phosphorylation.

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