Recent studies have documented that oxidized low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (oxLDL) levels directly impact myocardial structure and function. However, the molecular mechanisms by which oxLDL affects cardiac myocytes are not well established. We addressed the question whether oxLDL modifies load-free cell shortening, a standardized readout of cardiac cellular function, and investigated whether proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin-9 (PCSK9) is involved on oxLDL-dependent processes. Read More
Early reperfusion of ischemic cardiac tissue increases inflammatory cell infiltration which contributes to cardiomyocyte death and loss of cardiac function, referred to as ischemia/reperfusion (IR) injury. Neutrophil- and mast cell-derived proteases, cathepsin G (Cat.G) and chymase, are released early after IR, but their function is complicated by potentially redundant actions and targets. Read More
Baseline assessment of functional stenosis severity has been proposed as a practical alternative to hyperemic indices. However, intact autoregulation mechanisms may affect intracoronary hemodynamics. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of changes in aortic pressure (Pa) and heart rate (HR) on baseline coronary hemodynamics and functional stenosis assessment. Read More
Exercise training is key to healthful longevity. Since exercise training compliance is difficult, it would be useful to have a therapeutic substitute that mimicked exercise training. We compared the effects of exercise training in wild-type (WT) littermates with adenylyl cyclase type 5 knock out (AC5 KO) mice, a model of enhanced exercise performance. Read More
Basic Res Cardiol 2017 Sep 8;112(6):60. Epub 2017 Sep 8.
Department of Pharmacology (State-Province Key Laboratories of Biomedicine-Pharmaceutics of China, Key Laboratory of Cardiovascular Medicine Research, Ministry of Education), College of Pharmacy, Harbin Medical University, Harbin, China.
The cardioprotection of protein kinase Cepsilon (PKCε) against myocardial infarction (MI) mediated by its anti-apoptotic property and underlying mechanism of targeted regulation by microRNA (miRNA) are not established. MI-induced injury, PKCε expression, and targeted regulation of miRNA-143 (miR-143) to PKCε have been evaluated using animal MI and cellular hypoxic models conjugated with series of state-of-art molecular techniques. The results demonstrated that PKCε significantly downregulated along with increased infarcted area and apoptotic and necrotic damage in MI model, and the targeted relationship and potential binding profile were established between miR-143 and PKCε. Read More
Atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with atrial fibrosis. Inhibition of atrial fibrosis might be a plausible approach for AF prevention and therapy. This study is designed to evaluate the potential role of CD44, a membrane receptor known to regulate fibrosis, and its related signaling in the pathogenesis of atrial fibrosis and AF. Read More
Advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) have been associated with poorer outcomes after myocardial infarction (MI), and linked with heart failure. Methylglyoxal (MG) is considered the most important AGE precursor, but its role in MI is unknown. In this study, we investigated the involvement of MG-derived AGEs (MG-AGEs) in MI using transgenic mice that over-express the MG-metabolizing enzyme glyoxalase-1 (GLO1). Read More
Our current understanding of cardiac excitation and its coupling to contraction is largely based on ex vivo studies utilising fluorescent organic dyes to assess cardiac action potentials and signal transduction. Recent advances in optogenetic sensors open exciting new possibilities for cardiac research and allow us to answer research questions that cannot be addressed using the classic organic dyes. Especially thrilling is the possibility to use optogenetic sensors to record parameters of cardiac excitation and contraction in vivo. Read More
Asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA) is an endogenous inhibitor of nitric oxide synthases that limits nitric oxide bioavailability. Dimethylarginine dimethylaminohydrolase-1 (DDAH1) exerts a critical role for ADMA degradation and plays an important role in NO signaling. In the heart, DDAH1 is observed in endothelial cells and in the sarcolemma of cardiomyocytes. Read More
Coronary transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channel expression is elevated in metabolic syndrome (MetS). However, differential contribution of TRPCs to coronary pathology in MetS is not fully elucidated. We investigated the roles of TRPC1 and TRPC6 isoforms in coronary arteries of MetS pigs and determined whether long-term treatment with a mineralocorticoid receptor inhibitor, spironolactone, attenuates coronary TRPC expression and associated dysfunctions. Read More
Basic Res Cardiol 2017 Sep 10;112(5):52. Epub 2017 Jul 10.
Laboratory of Cardiac Electrophysiology Antonio Paes de Carvalho, Institute of Biophysics Carlos Chagas Filho, CCS, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Av. Carlos Chagas Filho, 373, CCS Bloco G, Ilha do Fundao, 21941-902, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil.
Ischaemic preconditioning (IPC) provides myocardial resistance to ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) injuries. The protection afforded by IPC is not limited to the target tissue but extends to remote tissues, suggesting a mechanism mediated by humoral factors. The aim of the present study was to identify the humoral factors that are responsible for the cardioprotection induced by the coronary effluent transferred from IPC to naïve hearts. Read More
Arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC) is a rare genetically-determined cardiac heart muscle disorder characterized by fibro-fatty replacement of the myocardium that results in heart failure and sudden cardiac death (SCD), predominantly in young males. The disease is often caused by mutations in genes encoding proteins of the desmosomal complex, with a significant minority caused by mutations in non-desmosomal proteins. Existing treatment options are based on SCD prevention with the implantable cardioverter defibrillator, antiarrhythmic drugs, and anti-heart failure medication. Read More
Growth differentiation factor 11 (GDF11), a TGF-beta superfamily member, is highly homologous to myostatin and essential for embryonic patterning and organogenesis. Reports of GDF11 effects on adult tissues are conflicting, with some describing anti-aging and pro-regenerative activities on the heart and skeletal muscle while others opposite or no effects. Herein, we sought to determine the in vivo cardiac and skeletal muscle effects of excess GDF11. Read More
Atrial fibrosis, the hallmark of structural remodeling associated with atrial fibrillation (AF), is characterized by abnormal proliferation of atrial fibroblasts and excessive deposition of extracellular matrix. Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1)/activin receptor-like kinase 5 (ALK5)/Smad2/3/4 pathway has been reported to be involved in the process. Recent studies have implicated both activin A and its specific downstream component activin receptor-like kinase 4 (ALK4) in stimulating fibrosis in non-cardiac organs. Read More
In the chronic complete atrioventricular (AV) block dog (CAVB) model, both bradycardia and altered ventricular activation due to the uncontrolled idioventricular rhythm contribute to ventricular remodeling and the enhanced susceptibility to Torsade de Pointes (TdP) arrhythmias. We investigated the effect of permanent bradycardic right ventricular apex (RVA) pacing on mechanical and electrical remodeling and TdP. In 23 anesthetized dogs, serial experiments were performed at sinus rhythm (SR), acutely after AV block (AAVB) and 3 weeks of remodeling CAVB at a fixed pacing rate of 60/min. Read More
Sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca(2+) leak induced by Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) is centrally involved in atrial and ventricular arrhythmogenesis as well as heart failure remodeling. Consequently, treating SR Ca(2+) leak has been proposed as a novel therapeutic paradigm, but compounds for use in humans are lacking. SMP-114 ("Rimacalib") is a novel, orally available CaMKII inhibitor developed for human use that has already entered clinical phase II trials to treat rheumatoid arthritis. Read More
In heart failure (HF), dysregulated cardiac ryanodine receptors (RyR2) contribute to the generation of diastolic Ca(2+) waves (DCWs), thereby predisposing adrenergically stressed failing hearts to life-threatening arrhythmias. However, the specific cellular, subcellular, and molecular defects that account for cardiac arrhythmia in HF remain to be elucidated. Patch-clamp techniques and confocal Ca(2+) imaging were applied to study spatially defined Ca(2+) handling in ventricular myocytes isolated from normal (control) and failing canine hearts. Read More
Protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) is a key regulator of important cardiac signaling pathways. Dysregulation of PP1 has been heavily implicated in cardiac dysfunctions. Accordingly, pharmacological targeting of PP1 activity is considered for therapeutic intervention in human cardiomyopathies. Read More
Optimal healing after myocardial infarction requires not only the induction of inflammation, but also its timely resolution. In patients, 30 days post myocardial infarction, circulating monocytes have increased expression of Semaphorin3A (Sema3A) as compared to directly after admission. This increased expression coincides with increased expression of Cx3CR1-a marker of non-classical monocytes that are important for immune resolution hence proper wound healing. Read More
Ischemic heart disease is still the leading cause of death even with the advancement of pharmaceutical therapies and surgical procedures. Early vascularization in the ischemic heart is critical for a better outcome. Although stem cell therapy has great potential for cardiovascular regeneration, the ideal cell type and delivery method of cells have not been resolved. Read More
Heme oxygenase-1 (Hmox1) is a stress-inducible protein crucial in heme catabolism. The end products of its enzymatic activity possess anti-oxidative, anti-apoptotic and anti-inflammatory properties. Cardioprotective effects of Hmox1 were demonstrated in experimental models of myocardial infarction (MI). Read More
Extracellular vesicles (EVs) serve an important function as mediators of intercellular communication. Exercise is protective for the heart, although the signaling mechanisms that mediate this cardioprotection have not been fully elucidated. Here using nano-flow cytometry, we found a rapid increase in plasma EVs in human subjects undergoing exercise stress testing. Read More
Cardiac physiology and hypertrophy are regulated by the phosphorylation status of many proteins, which is partly controlled by a poorly defined type 2A protein phosphatase-alpha4 intracellular signalling axis. Quantitative PCR analysis revealed that mRNA levels of the type 2A catalytic subunits were differentially expressed in H9c2 cardiomyocytes (PP2ACβ > PP2ACα > PP4C > PP6C), NRVM (PP2ACβ > PP2ACα = PP4C = PP6C), and adult rat ventricular myocytes (PP2ACα > PP2ACβ > PP6C > PP4C). Western analysis confirmed that all type 2A catalytic subunits were expressed in H9c2 cardiomyocytes; however, PP4C protein was absent in adult myocytes and only detectable following 26S proteasome inhibition. Read More
The mitochondrial electrochemical gradient (Δp), which comprises the pH gradient (ΔpH) and the membrane potential (ΔΨ), is crucial in controlling energy transduction. During myocardial ischemia and reperfusion (IR), mitochondrial dysfunction mediates superoxide ((·)O2(-)) and H2O2 overproduction leading to oxidative injury. However, the role of ΔpH and ΔΨ in post-ischemic injury is not fully established. Read More
The opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (PTP), which is regulated by the matrix protein cyclophilin D (CypD), plays a key role in the pathophysiology of post-cardiac arrest (CA) syndrome. We hypothesized that therapeutic hypothermia could prevent post-CA syndrome through a CypD-mediated PTP inhibition in both heart and brain. In addition, we investigated whether specific pharmacological PTP inhibition would confer additive protection to cooling. Read More
Aging is associated with increased cardiac interstitial fibrosis and diastolic dysfunction. Our previous study has shown that mesenchymal fibroblasts in the C57BL/6J (B6J) aging mouse heart acquire an inflammatory phenotype and produce higher levels of chemokines. Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) secreted by these aged fibroblasts promotes leukocyte uptake into the heart. Read More
Inflammation resolution is important for scar formation following myocardial infarction (MI) and requires the coordinated actions of macrophages and fibroblasts. In this study, we hypothesized that exogenous interleukin-10 (IL-10), an anti-inflammatory cytokine, promotes post-MI repair through actions on these cardiac cell types. To test this hypothesis, C57BL/6J mice (male, 3- to 6-month old, n = 24/group) were treated with saline or IL-10 (50 μg/kg/day) by osmotic mini-pump infusion starting at day (d) 1 post-MI and sacrificed at d7 post-MI. Read More
Ischemic heart disease is the main cause of death worldwide and is accelerated by increased levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C). Proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) is a potent circulating regulator of LDL-C through its ability to induce degradation of the LDL receptor (LDLR) in the lysosome of hepatocytes. Only in the last few years, a number of breakthroughs in the understanding of PCSK9 biology have been reported illustrating how PCSK9 activity is tightly regulated at several levels by factors influencing its transcription, secretion, or by extracellular inactivation and clearance. Read More
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) increases myocardial infarct size by an unknown mechanism. Here we examined the hypothesis that impairment of protective PI3K-PDK1-Akt and/or mTORC-Akt signaling upon reperfusion contributes to CKD-induced enlargement of infarct size. CKD was induced in rats by 5/6 nephrectomy (SNx group) 4 weeks before myocardial infarction experiments, and sham-operated rats served as controls (Sham group). Read More
Vascular remodelling in hypoxia-induced pulmonary hypertension (PH) is driven by excessive proliferation and migration of endothelial and smooth muscle cells. The expression of aquaporin 1 (AQP1), an integral membrane water channel protein involved in the control of these processes, is tightly regulated by oxygen levels. The role of AQP1 in the pathogenesis of PH, however, has not been directly addressed so far. Read More
Estrogen modulates adrenergic reactivity of macrovessels, resulting in weaker α-adrenergic vasoconstriction in females than males. However, the mechanisms governing this important sex-specific difference are not well understood. We hypothesized that vessels of females express more dilatory β-adrenoceptors, which counteract constrictive effects of α-adrenoceptors. Read More
Despite early revascularization, remodeling and dysfunction of the left ventricle (LV) after acute myocardial infarction (AMI) remain important therapeutic targets. Intermittent pacing therapy (IPT) of the LV can limit infarct size, when applied during early reperfusion. However, the effects of IPT on post-AMI LV remodeling and infarct healing are unknown. Read More
Mitochondrial connexin 43 (Cx43) plays a key role in cardiac cytoprotection caused by repeated exposure to short periods of non-lethal ischemia/reperfusion, a condition known as ischemic preconditioning. Cx43 also forms calcium (Ca(2+))-permeable hemichannels that may potentially lead to mitochondrial Ca(2+) overload and cell death. Here, we studied the role of Cx43 in facilitating mitochondrial Ca(2+) entry and investigated its downstream consequences. Read More
Left ventricular (LV) remodeling following a myocardial infarction (MI) involves formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Paroxetine, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, has an antioxidant effect in the vascular wall. We investigated whether paroxetine reduces myocardial ROS formation and LV remodeling following a MI. Read More
Inflammatory responses play an important role in the development of left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy and dysfunction. Recent studies demonstrated that increased T-cell infiltration and T-cell activation contribute to LV hypertrophy and dysfunction. Dendritic cells (DCs) are professional antigen-presenting cells that orchestrate immune responses, especially by modulating T-cell function. Read More
Caveolae and associated cavin and caveolins may govern myocardial function, together with responses to mechanical and ischaemic stresses. Abnormalities in these proteins are also implicated in different cardiovascular disorders. However, specific roles of the cavin-1 protein in cardiac and coronary responses to mechanical/metabolic perturbation remain unclear. Read More
Basic Res Cardiol 2017 May 15;112(3):23. Epub 2017 Mar 15.
Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Department of Medicine, Institute of Molecular Cardiology, Diabetes and Obesity Center, University of Louisville, 580 South Preston Street, Louisville, KY, 40202, USA.
The myocardial response to pressure overload involves coordination of multiple transcriptional, posttranscriptional, and metabolic cues. The previous studies show that one such metabolic cue, O-GlcNAc, is elevated in the pressure-overloaded heart, and the increase in O-GlcNAcylation is required for cardiomyocyte hypertrophy in vitro. Yet, it is not clear whether and how O-GlcNAcylation participates in the hypertrophic response in vivo. Read More
Ischemic reperfusion (I/R) contributes to deleterious cardiac remodeling and heart failure. The deacetylase SIRT1 has been shown to protect the heart from I/R injury. We examined the mechanism whereby I/R injury represses SIRT1 transcription in the myocardium. Read More
Vasopressors are widely used in resuscitation, ventricular failure, and sepsis, and often induce pulmonary hypertension with undefined mechanisms. We hypothesize that vasopressor-induced pulmonary hypertension is caused by increased pulmonary blood volume and tested this hypothesis in dogs under general anesthesia. In normal hearts (model 1), phenylephrine (2. Read More
Inhibition of complement factor 5 (C5) reduced myocardial infarction in animal studies, while no benefit was found in clinical studies. Due to lack of cross-reactivity of clinically used C5 antibodies, different inhibitors were used in animal and clinical studies. Coversin (Ornithodoros moubata complement inhibitor, OmCI) blocks C5 cleavage and binds leukotriene B4 in humans and pigs. Read More
In the failing heart, iNOS is expressed by both macrophages and cardiomyocytes. We hypothesized that inflammatory cell-localized iNOS exacerbates left ventricular (LV) remodeling. Wild-type (WT) C57BL/6 mice underwent total body irradiation and reconstitution with bone marrow from iNOS(-/-) mice (iNOS(-/-)c) or WT mice (WTc). Read More
We have recently demonstrated that repeated administrations of c-kit(POS) cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) have cumulative beneficial effects in rats with old myocardial infarction (MI), resulting in markedly greater improvement in left ventricular (LV) function compared with a single administration. To determine whether this paradigm applies to other species and cell types, mice with a 3-week-old MI received one or three doses of cardiac mesenchymal cells (CMCs), a novel cell type that we have recently described. CMCs or vehicle were infused percutaneously into the LV cavity, 14 days apart. Read More
Basic Res Cardiol 2017 Mar 10;112(2):17. Epub 2017 Feb 10.
Myocardial Pathophysiology Area, Translational Laboratory for Cardiovascular Imaging and Therapy, Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares Carlos III (CNIC), Melchor Fernández Almagro, 3, 28029, Madrid, Spain.
Reperfusion, despite being required for myocardial salvage, is associated with additional injury. We hypothesize that infarct size (IS) will be reduced by a period of bloodless reperfusion with hemoglobin-based oxygen carriers (HBOC) before blood-flow restoration. In the pig model, we first characterized the impact of intracoronary perfusion with a fixed volume (600 ml) of a pre-oxygenated acellular HBOC, HBOC-201, on the healthy myocardium. Read More
The NLRP3 inflammasome is an intracellular multiple-protein complex that controls the maturation and release of interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-18. Endogenous carbon monoxide (CO) is anti-inflammatory. The aim of this study was to assess the effects/mechanisms of CO-releasing molecule-3 (CORM-3)-dependent modulation of the NLRP3 inflammasome in cardiac fibroblasts (CF) and its effect on myocardial function in sepsis. Read More
The demonstration that caveolin-3 overexpression reduces myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury and our own finding that multiprotein signaling complexes increase in mitochondria in association with caveolin-3 levels, led us to investigate the contribution of caveolae-driven extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1/2 (ERK1/2) on maintaining the function of cardiac mitochondrial subpopulations from reperfused hearts subjected to postconditioning (PostC). Rat hearts were isolated and subjected to ischemia/reperfusion and to PostC. Enhanced cardiac function, reduced infarct size and preserved ultrastructure of cardiomyocytes were associated with increased formation of caveolar structures, augmented levels of caveolin-3 and mitochondrial ERK1/2 activation in PostC hearts in both subsarcolemmal (SSM) and interfibrillar (IFM) subpopulations. Read More
NBC Na(+)/HCO3(-) cotransporter (NBCn1) and NHE1 Na(+)/H(+) exchanger have been associated with cardiac disorders and recently located in coronary endothelial cells (CEC) and cardiomyocytes mitochondria, respectively. Mitochondrial NHE1 blockade delays permeability transition pore (MPTP) opening and reduces superoxide levels, two critical events exacerbated in cells of diseased hearts. Conversely, activation of NBCn1 prevented apoptosis in CEC subjected to ischemic stress. Read More