ABSTRACT: AlphaB-crystallin (CryAB) is the most abundant small heat shock protein (HSP) constitutively expressed in cardiomyocytes. Gain- and loss-of-function studies demonstrated that CryAB can protect against myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury. However, the role of CryAB or any HSPs in cardiac responses to mechanical overload is unknown. This study addresses this issue. Nontransgenic mice and mice with cardiomyocyte-restricted transgenic overexpression of CryAB or with germ-line ablation of the CryAB/HSPB2 genes were subjected to transverse aortic constriction or sham surgery. Two weeks later, cardiac responses were analyzed by fetal gene expression profiling, cardiac function analyses, and morphometry. Comparison among the 3 sham surgery groups reveals that CryAB overexpression is benign, whereas the knockout is detrimental to the heart as reflected by cardiac hypertrophy and malfunction at 10 weeks of age. Compared to nontransgenic mice, transgenic mouse hearts showed significantly reduced NFAT transactivation and attenuated cardiac hypertrophic responses to transverse aortic constriction but unchanged cardiac function, whereas NFAT transactivation was significantly increased in cardiac and skeletal muscle of the knockout mice at baseline, and they developed cardiac insufficiency at 2 weeks after transverse aortic constriction. CryAB overexpression in cultured neonatal rat cardiomyocytes significantly attenuated adrenergic stimulation-induced NFAT transactivation and hypertrophic growth. We conclude that CryAB suppresses cardiac hypertrophic responses likely through attenuating NFAT signaling and that CryAB and/or HSPB2 are essential for normal cardiac function.
Project description:G protein-coupled receptor kinases (GRKs) acting in the cardiomyocyte regulate important signaling events that control cardiac function. Both GRK2 and GRK5, the predominant GRKs expressed in the heart, have been shown to be upregulated in failing human myocardium. Although the canonical role of GRKs is to desensitize G protein-coupled receptors via phosphorylation, it has been demonstrated that GRK5, unlike GRK2, can reside in the nucleus of myocytes and exert G protein-coupled receptor-independent effects that promote maladaptive cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure.To explore novel mechanisms by which GRK5 acting in the nucleus of cardiomyocytes participates in pathological cardiac hypertrophy.In this study, we have found that GRK5-mediated pathological cardiac hypertrophy involves the activation of the nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) because GRK5 causes enhancement of NFAT-mediated hypertrophic gene transcription. Transgenic mice with cardiomyocyte-specific GRK5 overexpression activate an NFAT-reporter in mice basally and after hypertrophic stimulation, including transverse aortic constriction and phenylephrine treatment. Complimentary to this, GRK5 null mice exhibit less NFAT transcriptional activity after transverse aortic constriction. Furthermore, the loss of NFATc3 expression in the heart protected GRK5 overexpressing transgenic mice from the exaggerated hypertrophy and early progression to heart failure seen after transverse aortic constriction. Molecular studies suggest that GRK5 acts in concert with NFAT to increase hypertrophic gene transcription in the nucleus via GRK5's ability to bind DNA directly without a phosphorylation event.GRK5, acting in a kinase independent manner, is a facilitator of NFAT activity and part of a DNA-binding complex responsible for pathological hypertrophic gene transcription.
Project description:Pathological cardiac hypertrophy is characterized by subcellular remodeling of the ventricular myocyte with a reduction in the scaffolding protein caveolin-3 (Cav-3), altered Ca(2+) cycling, increased protein kinase C expression, and hyperactivation of calcineurin/nuclear factor of activated T cell (NFAT) signaling. However, the precise role of Cav-3 in the regulation of local Ca(2+) signaling in pathological cardiac hypertrophy is unclear. We used cardiac-specific Cav-3-overexpressing mice and in vivo and in vitro cardiac hypertrophy models to determine the essential requirement for Cav-3 expression in protection against pharmacologically and pressure overload-induced cardiac hypertrophy. Transverse aortic constriction and angiotensin-II (Ang-II) infusion in wild type (WT) mice resulted in cardiac hypertrophy characterized by significant reduction in fractional shortening, ejection fraction, and a reduced expression of Cav-3. In addition, association of PKC? and angiotensin-II receptor, type 1, with Cav-3 was disrupted in the hypertrophic ventricular myocytes. Whole cell patch clamp analysis demonstrated increased expression of T-type Ca(2+) current (ICa, T) in hypertrophic ventricular myocytes. In contrast, the Cav-3-overexpressing mice demonstrated protection from transverse aortic constriction or Ang-II-induced pathological hypertrophy with inhibition of ICa, T and intact Cav-3-associated macromolecular signaling complexes. siRNA-mediated knockdown of Cav-3 in the neonatal cardiomyocytes resulted in enhanced Ang-II stimulation of ICa, T mediated by PKC?, which caused nuclear translocation of NFAT. Overexpression of Cav-3 in neonatal myocytes prevented a PKC?-mediated increase in ICa, T and nuclear translocation of NFAT. In conclusion, we show that stable Cav-3 expression is essential for protecting the signaling mechanisms in pharmacologically and pressure overload-induced cardiac hypertrophy.
Project description:In response to chronic hypertension, the heart compensates by hypertrophic growth, which frequently progresses to heart failure. Although intracellular calcium (Ca(2+)) has a central role in hypertrophic signaling pathways, the Ca(2+) source for activating these pathways remains elusive. We hypothesized that pathological sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) leak through defective cardiac intracellular Ca(2+) release channels/ryanodine receptors (RyR2) accelerates heart failure development by stimulating Ca(2+)-dependent hypertrophic signaling. Mice heterozygous for the gain-of-function mutation R176Q/+ in RyR2 and wild-type mice were subjected to transverse aortic constriction. Cardiac function was significantly lower, and cardiac dimensions were larger at 8 weeks after transverse aortic constriction in R176Q/+ compared with wild-type mice. R176Q/+ mice displayed an enhanced hypertrophic response compared with wild-type mice as assessed by heart weight:body weight ratios and cardiomyocyte cross-sectional areas after transverse aortic constriction. Quantitative PCR revealed increased transcriptional activation of cardiac stress genes in R176Q/+ mice after transverse aortic constriction. Moreover, pressure overload resulted in an increased sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) leak, associated with higher expression levels of the exon 4 splice form of regulator of calcineurin 1, and a decrease in nuclear factor of activated T-cells phosphorylation in R176Q/+ mice compared with wild-type mice. Taken together, our results suggest that RyR2-dependent sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) leak activates the prohypertrophic calcineurin/nuclear factor of activated T-cells pathway under conditions of pressure overload.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Although the complex roles of macrophages in myocardial injury are widely appreciated, the function of neutrophils in nonischemic cardiac pathology has received relatively little attention. METHODS:To examine the regulation and function of neutrophils in pressure overload-induced cardiac hypertrophy, mice underwent treatment with Ly6G antibody to deplete neutrophils and then were subjected to transverse aortic constriction. RESULTS:Neutrophil depletion diminished transverse aortic constriction-induced hypertrophy and inflammation and preserved cardiac function. Myeloid deficiency of Wnt5a, a noncanonical Wnt, suppressed neutrophil infiltration to the hearts of transverse aortic constriction-treated mice and produced a phenotype that was similar to the neutropenic conditions. Conversely, mice overexpressing Wnt5a in myeloid cells displayed greater hypertrophic growth, inflammation, and cardiac dysfunction. Neutrophil depletion reversed the Wnt5a overexpression-induced cardiac pathology and eliminated differences in cardiac parameters between wild-type and myeloid-specific Wnt5a transgenic mice. CONCLUSIONS:These findings reveal that Wnt5a-regulated neutrophil infiltration has a critical role in pressure overload-induced heart failure.
Project description:MicroRNA (miRNA) is an endogenous non-coding RNA species that either inhibits RNA translation or promotes degradation of target mRNAs. miRNAs often regulate cellular signaling by targeting multiple genes within the pathways. In the present study, using Gene Set Analysis, a useful bioinformatics tool to identify miRNAs with multiple target genes in the same pathways, we identified miR-185 as a key candidate regulator of cardiac hypertrophy. Using a mouse model, we found that miR-185 was significantly down-regulated in myocardial cells during cardiac hypertrophy induced by transverse aortic constriction. To confirm that miR-185 is an anti-hypertrophic miRNA, genetic manipulation studies such as overexpression and knock-down of miR-185 in neonatal rat ventricular myocytes were conducted. The results showed that up-regulation of miR-185 led to anti-hypertrophic effects, while down-regulation led to pro-hypertrophic effects, suggesting that miR-185 has an anti-hypertrophic role in the heart. Our study further identified Camk2d, Ncx1, and Nfatc3 as direct targets of miR-185. The activity of Nuclear Factor of Activated T-cell (NFAT) and calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II delta (CaMKII?) was negatively regulated by miR-185 as assessed by NFAT-luciferase activity and western blotting. The expression of phospho-phospholamban (Thr-17), a marker of CaMKII? activity, was also significantly reduced by miR-185. In conclusion, miR-185 effectively blocked cardiac hypertrophy signaling through multiple targets, rendering it a potential drug target for diseases such as heart failure.
Project description:The increase in protein activity and upregulation of G-protein coupled receptor kinase 2 (GRK2) is a hallmark of cardiac stress and heart failure. Inhibition of GRK2 improved cardiac function and survival and diminished cardiac remodeling in various animal heart failure models. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of GRK2 on cardiac hypertrophy and dissect potential molecular mechanisms. In mice we observed increased GRK2 mRNA and protein levels following transverse aortic constriction (TAC). Conditional GRK2 knockout mice showed attenuated hypertrophic response with preserved ventricular geometry 6 weeks after TAC operation compared to wild-type animals. In isolated neonatal rat ventricular cardiac myocytes stimulation with angiotensin II and phenylephrine enhanced GRK2 expression leading to enhanced signaling via protein kinase B (PKB or Akt), consecutively inhibiting glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (GSK3?), such promoting nuclear accumulation and activation of nuclear factor of activated T-cells (NFAT). Cardiac myocyte hypertrophy induced by in vitro GRK2 overexpression increased the cytosolic interaction of GRK2 and phosphoinositide 3-kinase ? (PI3K?). Moreover, inhibition of PI3K? as well as GRK2 knock down prevented Akt activation resulting in halted NFAT activity and reduced cardiac myocyte hypertrophy. Our data show that enhanced GRK2 expression triggers cardiac hypertrophy by GRK2-PI3K? mediated Akt phosphorylation and subsequent inactivation of GSK3?, resulting in enhanced NFAT activity.
Project description:Cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure are associated with metabolic dysregulation and a state of chronic energy deficiency. Although several disparate changes in individual metabolic pathways have been described, there has been no global assessment of metabolomic changes in hypertrophic and failing hearts in vivo. Hence, we investigated the impact of pressure overload and infarction on myocardial metabolism.Male C57BL/6J mice were subjected to transverse aortic constriction or permanent coronary occlusion (myocardial infarction [MI]). A combination of LC/MS/MS and GC/MS techniques was used to measure 288 metabolites in these hearts. Both transverse aortic constriction and MI were associated with profound changes in myocardial metabolism affecting up to 40% of all metabolites measured. Prominent changes in branched-chain amino acids were observed after 1 week of transverse aortic constriction and 5 days after MI. Changes in branched-chain amino acids after MI were associated with myocardial insulin resistance. Longer duration of transverse aortic constriction and MI led to a decrease in purines, acylcarnitines, fatty acids, and several lysolipid and sphingolipid species but a marked increase in pyrimidines as well as ascorbate, heme, and other indices of oxidative stress. Cardiac remodeling and contractile dysfunction in hypertrophied hearts were associated with large increases in myocardial, but not plasma, levels of the polyamines putrescine and spermidine as well as the collagen breakdown product prolylhydroxyproline.These findings reveal extensive metabolic remodeling common to both hypertrophic and failing hearts that are indicative of extracellular matrix remodeling, insulin resistance and perturbations in amino acid, and lipid and nucleotide metabolism.
Project description:Normally, cell cycle progression is tightly coupled to the accumulation of cell mass; however, the mechanisms whereby proliferation and cell growth are linked are poorly understood. We have identified cyclin (Cyc)D2, a G(1) cyclin implicated in mediating S phase entry, as a potential regulator of hypertrophic growth in adult post mitotic myocardium. To examine the role of CycD2 and its downstream targets, we subjected CycD2-null mice to mechanical stress. Hypertrophic growth in response to transverse aortic constriction was attenuated in CycD2-null compared with wild-type mice. Blocking the increase in CycD2 in response to hypertrophic agonists prevented phosphorylation of CycD2-target Rb (retinoblastoma gene product) in vitro, and mice deficient for Rb had potentiated hypertrophic growth. Hypertrophic growth requires new protein synthesis and transcription of tRNA genes by RNA polymerase (pol) III, which increases with hypertrophic signals. This load-induced increase in RNA pol III activity is augmented in Rb-deficient hearts. Rb binds and represses Brf-1 and TATA box binding protein (TBP), subunits of RNA pol III-specific transcription factor B, in adult myocardium under basal conditions. However, this association is disrupted in response to transverse aortic constriction. RNA pol III activity is unchanged in CycD2(-/-) myocardium after transverse aortic constriction, and there is no dissociation of TBP from Rb. These investigations identify an essential role for the CycD2-Rb pathway as a governor of cardiac myocyte enlargement in response to biomechanical stress and, more fundamentally, as a regulator of the load-induced activation of RNA pol III.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Nitric oxide synthase uncoupling occurs under conditions of oxidative stress modifying the enzyme's function so it generates superoxide rather than nitric oxide. Nitric oxide synthase uncoupling occurs with chronic pressure overload, and both are ameliorated by exogenous tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4)-a cofactor required for normal nitric oxide synthase function-supporting a pathophysiological link. Genetically augmenting BH4 synthesis in endothelial cells fails to replicate this benefit, indicating that other cell types dominate the effects of exogenous BH4 administration. We tested whether the primary cellular target of BH4 is the cardiomyocyte or whether other novel mechanisms are invoked.<h4>Methods and results</h4>Mice with cardiomyocyte-specific overexpression of GTP cyclohydrolase 1 (mGCH1) and wild-type littermates underwent transverse aortic constriction. The mGCH1 mice had markedly increased myocardial BH4 and, unlike wild type, maintained nitric oxide synthase coupling after transverse aortic constriction; however, the transverse aortic constriction-induced abnormalities in cardiac morphology and function were similar in both groups. In contrast, exogenous BH4 supplementation improved transverse aortic constricted hearts in both groups, suppressed multiple inflammatory cytokines, and attenuated infiltration of inflammatory macrophages into the heart early after transverse aortic constriction.<h4>Conclusions</h4>BH4 protection against adverse remodeling in hypertrophic cardiac disease is not driven by its prevention of myocardial nitric oxide synthase uncoupling, as presumed previously. Instead, benefits from exogenous BH4 are mediated by a protective effect coupled to suppression of inflammatory pathways and myocardial macrophage infiltration.
Project description:L-type calcium channel activity is critical to afterload-induced hypertrophic growth of the heart. However, the mechanisms governing mechanical stress-induced activation of L-type calcium channel activity are obscure. Polycystin-1 (PC-1) is a G protein-coupled receptor-like protein that functions as a mechanosensor in a variety of cell types and is present in cardiomyocytes.We subjected neonatal rat ventricular myocytes to mechanical stretch by exposing them to hypo-osmotic medium or cyclic mechanical stretch, triggering cell growth in a manner dependent on L-type calcium channel activity. RNAi-dependent knockdown of PC-1 blocked this hypertrophy. Overexpression of a C-terminal fragment of PC-1 was sufficient to trigger neonatal rat ventricular myocyte hypertrophy. Exposing neonatal rat ventricular myocytes to hypo-osmotic medium resulted in an increase in ?1C protein levels, a response that was prevented by PC-1 knockdown. MG132, a proteasomal inhibitor, rescued PC-1 knockdown-dependent declines in ?1C protein. To test this in vivo, we engineered mice harboring conditional silencing of PC-1 selectively in cardiomyocytes (PC-1 knockout) and subjected them to mechanical stress in vivo (transverse aortic constriction). At baseline, PC-1 knockout mice manifested decreased cardiac function relative to littermate controls, and ?1C L-type calcium channel protein levels were significantly lower in PC-1 knockout hearts. Whereas control mice manifested robust transverse aortic constriction-induced increases in cardiac mass, PC-1 knockout mice showed no significant growth. Likewise, transverse aortic constriction-elicited increases in hypertrophic markers and interstitial fibrosis were blunted in the knockout animalsPC-1 is a cardiomyocyte mechanosensor that is required for cardiac hypertrophy through a mechanism that involves stabilization of ?1C protein.