Publications by authors named "Kristin B Andersson"

15 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Loss of lysosomal membrane protein NCU-G1 in mice results in spontaneous liver fibrosis with accumulation of lipofuscin and iron in Kupffer cells.

Dis Model Mech 2014 Mar 30;7(3):351-62. Epub 2014 Jan 30.

Department of Bioscience, University of Oslo, 0316 Oslo, Norway.

Human kidney predominant protein, NCU-G1, is a highly conserved protein with an unknown biological function. Initially described as a nuclear protein, it was later shown to be a bona fide lysosomal integral membrane protein. To gain insight into the physiological function of NCU-G1, mice with no detectable expression of this gene were created using a gene-trap strategy, and Ncu-g1(gt/gt) mice were successfully characterized. Lysosomal disorders are mainly caused by lack of or malfunctioning of proteins in the endosomal-lysosomal pathway. The clinical symptoms vary, but often include liver dysfunction. Persistent liver damage activates fibrogenesis and, if unremedied, eventually leads to liver fibrosis/cirrhosis and death. We demonstrate that the disruption of Ncu-g1 results in spontaneous liver fibrosis in mice as the predominant phenotype. Evidence for an increased rate of hepatic cell death, oxidative stress and active fibrogenesis were detected in Ncu-g1(gt/gt) liver. In addition to collagen deposition, microscopic examination of liver sections revealed accumulation of autofluorescent lipofuscin and iron in Ncu-g1(gt/gt) Kupffer cells. Because only a few transgenic mouse models have been identified with chronic liver injury and spontaneous liver fibrosis development, we propose that the Ncu-g1(gt/gt) mouse could be a valuable new tool in the development of novel treatments for the attenuation of fibrosis due to chronic liver damage.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1242/dmm.014050DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3944495PMC
March 2014

Prominent heart organ-level performance deficits in a genetic model of targeted severe and progressive SERCA2 deficiency.

PLoS One 2013 4;8(11):e79609. Epub 2013 Nov 4.

Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States of America ; Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biophysics, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States of America.

The cardiac SERCA2 Ca(2+) pump is critical for maintaining normal Ca(2+) handling in the heart. Reduced SERCA2a content and blunted Ca(2+) reuptake are frequently observed in failing hearts and evidence implicates poor cardiac Ca(2+) handling in the progression of heart failure. To gain insight into mechanism we investigated a novel genetic mouse model of inducible severe and progressive SERCA2 deficiency (inducible Serca2 knockout, SERCA2 KO). These mice eventually die from overt heart failure 7-10 weeks after knockout but as yet there have been no reports on intrinsic mechanical performance at the isolated whole heart organ level. Thus we studied whole-organ ex vivo function of hearts isolated from SERCA2 KO mice at one and four weeks post-knockout in adult animals. We found that isolated KO heart function was only modestly impaired one week post-knockout, when SERCA2a protein was 32% of normal. At four weeks post-knockout, function was severely impaired with near non-detectable levels of SERCA2. During perfusion with 10 mM caffeine, LV developed pressures were similar between 4-week KO and control hearts, and end-diastolic pressures were lower in KO. When hearts were subjected to ischemia-reperfusion injury, recovery was not different between control and KO hearts at either one or four weeks post-knockout. Our findings indicate that ex vivo function of isolated SERCA2 KO hearts is severely impaired long before symptoms appear in vivo, suggesting that physiologically relevant heart function in vivo can be sustained for weeks in the absence of robust SR Ca(2+) flux.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0079609PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3817129PMC
August 2014

Long-term levosimendan treatment improves systolic function and myocardial relaxation in mice with cardiomyocyte-specific disruption of the Serca2 gene.

J Appl Physiol (1985) 2013 Nov 26;115(10):1572-80. Epub 2013 Sep 26.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål and University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway;

In human heart failure (HF), reduced cardiac function has, at least partly, been ascribed to altered calcium homeostasis in cardiomyocytes. The effects of the calcium sensitizer levosimendan on diastolic dysfunction caused by reduced removal of calcium from cytosol in early diastole are not well known. In this study, we investigated the effect of long-term levosimendan treatment in a murine model of HF where the sarco(endo)plasmatic reticulum ATPase (Serca) gene is specifically disrupted in the cardiomyocytes, leading to reduced removal of cytosolic calcium. After induction of Serca2 gene disruption, these mice develop marked diastolic dysfunction as well as impaired contractility. SERCA2 knockout (SERCA2KO) mice were treated with levosimendan or vehicle from the time of KO induction. At the 7-wk end point, cardiac function was assessed by echocardiography and pressure measurements. Vehicle-treated SERCA2KO mice showed significantly diminished left-ventricular (LV) contractility, as shown by decreased ejection fraction, stroke volume, and cardiac output. LV pressure measurements revealed a marked increase in the time constant (τ) of isovolumetric pressure decay, showing impaired relaxation. Levosimendan treatment significantly improved all three systolic parameters. Moreover, a significant reduction in τ toward normalization indicated improved relaxation. Gene-expression analysis, however, revealed an increase in genes related to production of the ECM in animals treated with levosimendan. In conclusion, long-term levosimendan treatment improves both contractility and relaxation in a heart-failure model with marked diastolic dysfunction due to reduced calcium transients. However, altered gene expression related to fibrosis was observed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/japplphysiol.01044.2012DOI Listing
November 2013

Slowed relaxation and preserved maximal force in soleus muscles of mice with targeted disruption of the Serca2 gene in skeletal muscle.

J Physiol 2011 Dec 26;589(Pt 24):6139-55. Epub 2011 Sep 26.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital, Ullevål, and University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

Sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) ATPases (SERCAs) play a major role in muscle contractility by pumping Ca(2+) from the cytosol into the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca(2+) store, allowing muscle relaxation and refilling of the SR with releasable Ca(2+). Decreased SERCA function has been shown to result in impaired muscle function and disease in human and animal models. In this study, we present a new mouse model with targeted disruption of the Serca2 gene in skeletal muscle (skKO) to investigate the functional consequences of reduced SERCA2 expression in skeletal muscle. SkKO mice were viable and basic muscle structure was intact. SERCA2 abundance was reduced in multiple muscles, and by as much as 95% in soleus muscle, having the highest content of slow-twitch fibres (40%). The Ca(2+) uptake rate was significantly reduced in SR vesicles in total homogenates. We did not find any compensatory increase in SERCA1 or SERCA3 abundance, or altered expression of several other Ca(2+)-handling proteins. Ultrastructural analysis revealed generally well-preserved muscle morphology, but a reduced volume of the longitudinal SR. In contracting soleus muscle in vitro preparations, skKO muscles were able to fully relax, but with a significantly slowed relaxation time compared to controls. Surprisingly, the maximal force and contraction rate were preserved, suggesting that skKO slow-twitch fibres may be able to contribute to the total muscle force despite loss of SERCA2 protein. Thus it is possible that SERCA-independent mechanisms can contribute to muscle contractile function.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1113/jphysiol.2011.211987DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3286692PMC
December 2011

Exercise training before cardiac-specific Serca2 disruption attenuates the decline in cardiac function in mice.

J Appl Physiol (1985) 2010 Dec 23;109(6):1749-55. Epub 2010 Sep 23.

Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging, Faculty of Medicine, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.

In the heart, function of the sarco(endo)plasmic Ca(2+)-ATPase (SERCA2) is closely linked to contractility, cardiac function, and aerobic fitness. SERCA2 function can be increased by high-intensity interval training, whereas reduced SERCA2 abundance is associated with impaired cardiac function. The working hypothesis was, therefore, that exercise training before cardiomyocyte-specific disruption of the Serca2 gene would delay the onset of cardiac dysfunction in mice. Before Serca2 gene disruption by tamoxifen, untreated SERCA2 knockout mice (Serca2(flox/flox) Tg-αMHC-MerCreMer; S2KO), and SERCA2 FF control mice (Serca2(flox/flox), S2FF) were exercise trained by high-intensity interval treadmill running for 6 wk. Both genotypes responded to training, with comparable increases in maximal oxygen uptake (Vo(2max); 17%), left ventricle weight (15%), and maximal running speed (40%). After exercise training, cardiac-specific Serca2 gene disruption was induced in both exercise trained and sedentary S2KO mice. In trained S2KO, cardiac function decreased less rapidly than in sedentary S2KO. Vo(2max) remained higher in trained S2KO the first 15 days after gene disruption. Six weeks after Serca2 disruption, cardiac output was higher in trained compared with sedentary S2KO mice. An exercise-training program attenuates the decline in cardiac performance induced by acute cardiac Serca2 gene disruption, indicating that mechanisms other than SERCA2 contribute to the favorable effect of exercise training.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/japplphysiol.00282.2010DOI Listing
December 2010

Cre-loxP DNA recombination is possible with only minimal unspecific transcriptional changes and without cardiomyopathy in Tg(alphaMHC-MerCreMer) mice.

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2010 Nov 27;299(5):H1671-8. Epub 2010 Aug 27.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo Univ. Hospital Ullevål, Kirkevn 166, 0407 Oslo, Norway.

Cre-loxP technology for conditional gene inactivation is a powerful tool in cardiovascular research. Induction of gene inactivation can be carried out by per oral or intraperitoneal tamoxifen administration. Unintended transient cardiomyopathy following tamoxifen administration for gene inactivation has recently been reported. We aimed to develop a protocol for tamoxifen-induced gene inactivation with minimal effects on gene transcription and in vivo cardiac function, allowing studies of acute loss of the targeted gene. In mRNA microarrays, 35% of the 34,760 examined genes were significantly regulated in MCM(+/0) compared with wild type. In MCM(+/0), we found a correlation between tamoxifen dose and degree of gene regulation. Comparing one and four intraperitoneal injections of 40 mg·kg(-1)·day(-1) tamoxifen, regulated genes were reduced to 1/5 in the single injection group. Pronounced alteration in protein abundance and acute cardiomyopathy were observed after the four-injection protocols but not the one-injection protocol. For verification of gene inactivation following one injection of tamoxifen, this protocol was applied to MCM(+/0)/Serca2(fl/fl). Serca2 mRNA levels and protein abundance followed the same pattern of decline with one and four tamoxifen injections. The presence of the MCM transgene induced major alterations of gene expression while administration of tamoxifen induced additional but less gene regulation. Thus nonfloxed MCM(+/0) should be considered as controls for mice that carry both a floxed gene of interest and the MCM transgene. One single tamoxifen injection administered to MCM(+/0)/Serca2(fl/fl) was sufficient for target gene inactivation, without acute cardiomyopathy, allowing acute studies subsequent to gene inactivation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/ajpheart.01155.2009DOI Listing
November 2010

Reference gene alternatives to Gapdh in rodent and human heart failure gene expression studies.

BMC Mol Biol 2010 Mar 23;11:22. Epub 2010 Mar 23.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål, Oslo, Norway.

Background: Quantitative real-time RT-PCR (RT-qPCR) is a highly sensitive method for mRNA quantification, but requires invariant expression of the chosen reference gene(s). In pathological myocardium, there is limited information on suitable reference genes other than the commonly used Gapdh mRNA and 18S ribosomal RNA. Our aim was to evaluate and identify suitable reference genes in human failing myocardium, in rat and mouse post-myocardial infarction (post-MI) heart failure and across developmental stages in fetal and neonatal rat myocardium.

Results: The abundance of Arbp, Rpl32, Rpl4, Tbp, Polr2a, Hprt1, Pgk1, Ppia and Gapdh mRNA and 18S ribosomal RNA in myocardial samples was quantified by RT-qPCR. The expression variability of these transcripts was evaluated by the geNorm and Normfinder algorithms and by a variance component analysis method. Biological variability was a greater contributor to sample variability than either repeated reverse transcription or PCR reactions.

Conclusions: The most stable reference genes were Rpl32, Gapdh and Polr2a in mouse post-infarction heart failure, Polr2a, Rpl32 and Tbp in rat post-infarction heart failure and Rpl32 and Pgk1 in human heart failure (ischemic disease and cardiomyopathy). The overall most stable reference genes across all three species was Rpl32 and Polr2a. In rat myocardium, all reference genes tested showed substantial variation with developmental stage, with Rpl4 as was most stable among the tested genes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2199-11-22DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2907514PMC
March 2010

Circulating cytokine levels in mice with heart failure are etiology dependent.

J Appl Physiol (1985) 2010 May 11;108(5):1357-64. Epub 2010 Mar 11.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål, and Center for Heart Failure Research, University of Oslo, Kirkeveien 166, N-0407 Oslo, Norway.

Objectives: The aim of this study was to examine whether alterations in circulating cytokine levels are dependent on the etiology of myocardial hypertrophy and heart failure (HF).

Background: Several heart diseases are associated with altered levels of circulating cytokines. Cytokines are regarded as possible therapeutic targets or biomarkers, but such approaches are currently not in clinical use. If alterations in circulating cytokines are etiology dependent, this should be taken into consideration when using cytokines as disease markers and therapeutic targets.

Methods: The serum levels of 25 cytokines were quantified with Luminex and/or ELISA in four murine models of heart disease: banding of the ascending aorta (AB) or the pulmonary artery (PB), myocardial infarction (MI), and a cardiomyopathy model with inducible cardiomyocyte-specific knockout of the sarco(endo)plasmatic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase (SERCA2KO).

Results: No increase in circulating cytokine levels were found in mice 1 wk after AB, although substantial myocardial hypertrophy was present. After 1 wk of MI, only interleukin (IL)-18 was increased. In the SERCA2KO mice with HF, circulating levels of IL-1alpha, IL-2, IL-3, IL-6, IL-9, IL-10, IL-12p40, eotaxin, granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF), interferon-gamma, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, macrophage inflammatory protein-1beta were increased, and in mice with PB, IL-1alpha, IL-6, G-CSF, and monokine induced by gamma-interferon showed elevated levels.

Conclusions: Serum levels of cytokines in mice with HF vary depending on the etiology. Increased serum levels of several cytokines were found in models with increased right ventricular afterload, suggesting that the cytokine responses result primarily from systemic congestion.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/japplphysiol.01084.2009DOI Listing
May 2010

High-intensity exercise training in mice with cardiomyocyte-specific disruption of Serca2.

J Appl Physiol (1985) 2010 May 18;108(5):1311-20. Epub 2010 Feb 18.

Department of Circulation and Medical Imaging, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and Department of Medical Imaging, St. Olavs Hospital, Olav Kyrres gate 9, NO-7489 Trondheim, Norway.

Several lines of evidence indicate that the sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum ATPase type 2 (SERCA2) is essential for maintaining myocardial calcium handling and cardiac pump function. Hence, a reduction in SERCA2 abundance is expected to reduce work performance and maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) and to limit the response to exercise training. To test this hypothesis, we compared VO2max and exercise capacity in mice with cardiac disruption of Serca2 (SERCA2 KO) with control mice (SERCA2 FF). We also determined whether the effects on VO2max and exercise capacity could be modified by high-intensity aerobic exercise training. Treadmill running at 85-90% of VO2max started 2 wk after Serca2 gene disruption and continued for 4 wk. VO2max and maximal running speed were measured weekly in a metabolic chamber. Cardiac function was assessed by echocardiography during light anesthesia. In sedentary SERCA2 KO mice, the aerobic capacity was reduced by 50% and running speed by 28%, whereas trained SERCA2 KO mice were able to maintain maximal running speed despite a 36% decrease in VO2max. In SERCA2 FF mice, both VO2max and maximal running speed increased by training, while no changes occurred in the sedentary group. Left ventricle dimensions remained unchanged by training in both genotypes. In contrast, training induced right ventricle hypertrophy in SERCA2 KO mice. In conclusion, the SERCA2 protein is essential for sustaining cardiac pump function and exercise capacity. Nevertheless, SERCA2 KO mice were able to maintain maximal running speed in response to exercise training despite a large decrease in VO2max.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/japplphysiol.01133.2009DOI Listing
May 2010

Separate mechanisms cause anemia in ischemic vs. nonischemic murine heart failure.

Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 2010 Mar 23;298(3):R808-14. Epub 2009 Dec 23.

Department of Nutrition, Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

In ischemic congestive heart failure (CHF), anemia is associated with poor prognosis. Whether anemia develops in nonischemic CHF is uncertain. The hematopoietic inhibitors TNF-alpha and nitric oxide (NO) are activated in ischemic CHF. We examined whether mice with ischemic or nonischemic CHF develop anemia and whether TNF-alpha and NO are involved. We studied mice (n = 7-9 per group) with CHF either due to myocardial infarction (MI) or to overexpression of the Ca(2+)-binding protein calsequestrin (CSQ) or to induced cardiac disruption of the sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+)-ATPase 2 gene (SERCA2 KO). Hematopoiesis was analyzed by colony formation of CD34(+) bone marrow cells. Hemoglobin concentration was 14.0 +/- 0.4 g/dl (mean +/- SD) in controls, while it was decreased to 10.1 +/- 0.4, 9.7 +/- 0.4, and 9.6 +/- 0.3 g/dl in MI, CSQ, and SERCA2 KO, respectively (P < 0.05). Colony numbers per 100,000 CD34(+) cells in the three CHF groups were reduced to 33 +/- 3 (MI), 34 +/- 3 (CSQ), and 39 +/- 3 (SERCA2 KO) compared with 68 +/- 4 in controls (P < 0.05). Plasma TNF-alpha nearly doubled in MI, and addition of anti-TNF-alpha antibody normalized colony formation. Inhibition of colony formation was completely abolished with blockade of endothelial NO synthase in CSQ and SERCA2 KO, but not in MI. In conclusion, the mechanism of anemia in CHF depends on the etiology of cardiac disease; whereas TNF-alpha impairs hematopoiesis in CHF following MI, NO inhibits blood cell formation in nonischemic murine CHF.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/ajpregu.00250.2009DOI Listing
March 2010

Reduced SERCA2 abundance decreases the propensity for Ca2+ wave development in ventricular myocytes.

Cardiovasc Res 2010 Apr 17;86(1):63-71. Epub 2009 Dec 17.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital, Ullevål, Kirkeveien 166, N-0407 Oslo, Norway.

Aims: To describe the overall role of reduced sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) ATPase (SERCA2) for Ca(2+) wave development.

Methods And Results: SERCA2 knockout [Serca2(flox/flox) Tg(alphaMHC-MerCreMer); KO] mice allowing inducible cardiomyocyte-specific disruption of the Serca2 gene in adult mice were compared with Serca(flox/flox) (FF) control mice. Six days after Serca2 gene disruption, SERCA2 protein abundance was reduced by 53% in KO compared with FF, whereas SERCA2 activity in field-stimulated, Fluo-5F AM-loaded cells was reduced by 42%. Baseline Ca(2+) content of the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) and Ca(2+) transient amplitude and rate constant of decay measured in whole-cell voltage-clamped cells were decreased in KO to 75, 81, and 69% of FF values. Ca(2+) waves developed in only 31% of KO cardiomyocytes compared with 57% of FF when external Ca(2+) was raised (10 mM), although SR Ca(2+) content needed for waves to develop was 79% of FF values. In addition, waves propagated at a 15% lower velocity in KO cells. Ventricular extrasystoles (VES) occurred with lower frequency in SERCA2 KO mice (KO: 3 +/- 1 VES/h vs. FF: 8 +/- 1 VES/h) (P < 0.05 for all results).

Conclusion: Reduced SERCA2 abundance resulted in decreased amplitude and decay rate of Ca(2+) transients, reduced SR Ca(2+) content, and decreased propensity for Ca(2+) wave development.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cvr/cvp401DOI Listing
April 2010

Sodium accumulation promotes diastolic dysfunction in end-stage heart failure following Serca2 knockout.

J Physiol 2010 Feb 14;588(Pt 3):465-78. Epub 2009 Dec 14.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital Ullevaal, 0407 Oslo, Norway.

Alterations in trans-sarcolemmal and sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca(2+) fluxes may contribute to impaired cardiomyocyte contraction and relaxation in heart failure. We investigated the mechanisms underlying heart failure progression in mice with conditional, cardiomyocyte-specific excision of the SR Ca(2+)-ATPase (SERCA) gene. At 4 weeks following gene deletion (4-week KO) cardiac function remained near normal values. However, end-stage heart failure developed by 7 weeks (7-week KO) as systolic and diastolic performance declined. Contractions in isolated myocytes were reduced between 4- and 7-week KO, and relaxation was slowed. Ca(2+) transients were similarly altered. Reduction in Ca(2+) transient magnitude resulted from complete loss of SR Ca(2+) release between 4- and 7-week KO, due to loss of a small remaining pool of SERCA2. Declining SR Ca(2+) release was partly offset by increased L-type Ca(2+) current, which was facilitated by AP prolongation in 7-week KO. Ca(2+) entry via reverse-mode Na(+)-Ca(2+) exchange (NCX) was also enhanced. Up-regulation of NCX and plasma membrane Ca(2+)-ATPase increased Ca(2+) extrusion rates in 4-week KO. Diastolic dysfunction in 7-week KO resulted from further SERCA2 loss, but also impaired NCX-mediated Ca(2+) extrusion following Na(+) accumulation. Reduced Na(+)-K(+)-ATPase activity contributed to the Na(+) gain. Normalizing [Na(+)] by dialysis increased the Ca(2+) decline rate in 7-week KO beyond 4-week values. Thus, while SERCA2 loss promotes both systolic and diastolic dysfunction, Na(+) accumulation additionally impairs relaxation in this model. Our observations indicate that if cytosolic Na(+) gain is prevented, up-regulated Ca(2+) extrusion mechanisms can maintain near-normal diastolic function in the absence of SERCA2.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1113/jphysiol.2009.183517DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2825611PMC
February 2010

Tamoxifen administration routes and dosage for inducible Cre-mediated gene disruption in mouse hearts.

Transgenic Res 2010 Aug 6;19(4):715-25. Epub 2009 Nov 6.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål, Building 7, Kirkeveien 166, 0407, Oslo, Norway.

Tissue-specific and time-dependent control of in vivo gene disruption may be achieved using conditional knockout strategies in transgenic mice. Fusion of mutant estrogen receptor ligand-binding domains to Cre recombinase (Cre-ER(T), MerCreMer) combined with cardiac-directed gene expression has been used to generate several cardiac-specific tamoxifen-inducible Cre-expressing mouse lines. Such mice have successfully been used to generate Cre-loxP-mediated gene disruption in an inducible manner in the myocardium in vivo. However, information is sparse regarding the tamoxifen dosage, the time course of gene disruption and whether different administration routes differ in efficiency in obtaining gene disruption in the myocardium. We have evaluated these parameters in Serca2 ( flox/flox ) Tg(alphaMHC-MerCreMer) transgenic mice (SERCA2 KO). Serca2 mRNA transcript abundance was used as a sensitive indicator of Cre-loxP-dependent gene disruption in the myocardium. We found that 2 i.p. injections of tamoxifen in oil (1 mg/day, approximate total dose 80 mg/kg) was sufficient for efficient gene disruption with maximal reduction of Serca2 mRNA as early as 4 days after tamoxifen induction. Moreover, a simple protocol using tamoxifen-supplemented non-pelleted dry feed p.o. was comparable to i.p. injections in inducing gene disruption. These improvements may significantly improve animal welfare and reduce the workload in the production of cardiac conditional knockout mice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11248-009-9342-4DOI Listing
August 2010

Mice carrying a conditional Serca2(flox) allele for the generation of Ca(2+) handling-deficient mouse models.

Cell Calcium 2009 Sep 18;46(3):219-25. Epub 2009 Aug 18.

Institute for Experimental Medical Research, Oslo University Hospital Ullevaal, Norway.

Sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum calcium ATPases (SERCA) are cellular pumps that transport Ca(2+) into the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR). Serca2 is the most widely expressed gene family member. The very early embryonic lethality of Serca2(null) mouse embryos has precluded further evaluation of loss of Serca2 function in the context of organ physiology. We have generated mice carrying a conditional Serca2(flox) allele which allows disruption of the Serca2 gene in an organ-specific and/or inducible manner. The model was tested by mating Serca2(flox) mice with MLC-2v(wt/Cre) mice and with alphaMHC-Cre transgenic mice. In heterozygous Serca2(wt/flox)MLC-2v(wt/Cre) mice, the expression of SERCA2a and SERCA2b proteins were reduced in the heart and slow skeletal muscle, in accordance with the expression pattern of the MLC-2v gene. In Serca2(flox/flox) Tg(alphaMHC-Cre) embryos with early homozygous cardiac Serca2 disruption, normal embryonic development and yolk sac circulation was maintained up to at least embryonic stage E10.5. The Serca2(flox) mouse is the first murine conditional gene disruption model for the SERCA family of Ca(2+) ATPases, and should be a powerful tool for investigating specific physiological roles of SERCA2 function in a range of tissues and organs in vivo both in adult and embryonic stages.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ceca.2009.07.004DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4313567PMC
September 2009

The human neuroendocrine thyrotropin-releasing hormone receptor promoter is activated by the haematopoietic transcription factor c-Myb.

Biochem J 2003 Jun;372(Pt 3):851-9

Department of Biochemistry, University of Oslo, P.O. Box 1041 Blindern, Norway.

Thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) receptor (TRHR) is a G-protein-coupled receptor playing a crucial role in the anterior pituitary where it controls the synthesis and secretion of thyroid-stimulating hormone and prolactin. Its widespread presence not only in the central nervous system, but also in peripheral tissues, including thymus, indicates other important, but unknown, functions. One hypothesis is that the neuropeptide TRH could play a role in the immune system. We report here that the human TRHR promoter contains 11 putative response elements for the haematopoietic transcription factor c-Myb and is highly Myb-responsive in transfection assays. Analysis of Myb binding to putative response elements revealed one preferred binding site in intron 1 of the receptor gene. Transfection studies of promoter deletions confirmed that this high-affinity element is necessary for efficient Myb-dependent transactivation of reporter plasmids in CV-1 cells. The Myb-dependent activation of the TRHR promoter was strongly suppressed by expression of a dominant negative Myb-Engrailed fusion. In line with these observations, reverse transcriptase PCR analysis of rat tissues showed that the TRHR gene is expressed both in thymocytes and bone marrow. Furthermore, specific, high-affinity TRH agonist binding to cell-surface receptors was demonstrated in thymocytes and a haematopoietic cell line. Our findings imply a novel functional link between the neuroendocrine and the immune systems at the level of promoter regulation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1042/BJ20030057DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1223435PMC
June 2003