Adult sox10+ Cardiomyocytes Contribute to Myocardial Regeneration in the Zebrafish.
ABSTRACT: During heart regeneration in the zebrafish, fibrotic tissue is replaced by newly formed cardiomyocytes derived from preexisting ones. It is unclear whether the heart is composed of several cardiomyocyte populations bearing different capacity to replace lost myocardium. Here, using sox10 genetic fate mapping, we identify a subset of preexistent cardiomyocytes in the adult zebrafish heart with a distinct gene expression profile that expanded after cryoinjury. Genetic ablation of sox10+ cardiomyocytes impairs cardiac regeneration, revealing that these cells play a role in heart regeneration.
Project description:During heart regeneration in the zebrafish, fibrotic tissue is replaced by newly formed cardiomyocytes derived from pre-existing ones. It is unclear whether the heart is comprised of several cardiomyocyte populations bearing different capacity to replace lost myocardium. Here, using sox10 genetic fate mapping, we identified a subset of pre-existent cardiomyocytes in the adult zebrafish heart with a distinct gene expression profile that expanded massively after cryoinjury. Genetic ablation of sox10+ cardiomyocytes severely impaired cardiac regeneration revealing that they play a crucial role for heart regeneration.
Project description:In zebrafish, the role of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) in the inflammatory phase of heart regeneration following cryoinjury remains poorly understood. Here, we demonstrated an increase in MMP enzymatic activity and elevated expression of mmp9 and mmp13 in the injured area (IA) of hearts from as early as 1 day post-cryoinjury (dpc). Treatment with the broad-spectrum MMP inhibitor, GM6001, during the first week after cryoinjury resulted in impaired heart regeneration, as indicated by the larger scar and reduced numbers of proliferating cardiomyocytes. GM6001 also significantly reduced the number of leukocytes to the IA at 0.5 dpc to 4 dpc. Specific inhibition of both MMP-9 and MMP-13 also resulted in impaired regeneration and leukocyte recruitment. However, chemokine rescue with recombinant CXCL8 and CCL2 restored the recruitment of macrophages and the cardiac regenerative capability in GM6001-treated fish. MMP-9 and MMP-13 cleaved zebrafish CXCL8 at the same site, and the truncated form was more chemotactic than the intact form. In contrast, CCL2 did not have an MMP-9 or MMP-13 cleavage site. Together, these data suggest that MMPs might play a key role in the inflammatory phase of heart regeneration in zebrafish, by mediating leukocyte recruitment via the activation of chemokines.
Project description:After myocardial infarction in humans, lost cardiomyocytes are replaced by an irreversible fibrotic scar. In contrast, zebrafish hearts efficiently regenerate after injury. Complete regeneration of the zebrafish heart is driven by the strong proliferation response of its cardiomyocytes to injury. Here we show that, after cardiac injury in zebrafish, telomerase becomes hyperactivated, and telomeres elongate transiently, preceding a peak of cardiomyocyte proliferation and full organ recovery. Using a telomerase-mutant zebrafish model, we found that telomerase loss drastically decreases cardiomyocyte proliferation and fibrotic tissue regression after cryoinjury and that cardiac function does not recover. The impaired cardiomyocyte proliferation response is accompanied by the absence of cardiomyocytes with long telomeres and an increased proportion of cardiomyocytes showing DNA damage and senescence characteristics. These findings demonstrate the importance of telomerase function in heart regeneration and highlight the potential of telomerase therapy as a means of stimulating cell proliferation upon myocardial infarction.
Project description:Unlike human hearts, zebrafish hearts efficiently regenerate after injury. Regeneration is driven by the strong proliferation response of its cardiomyocytes to injury. In this study, we show that active telomerase is required for cardiomyocyte proliferation and full organ recovery, supporting the potential of telomerase therapy as a means of stimulating cell proliferation upon myocardial infarction. Heart transcriptomes of WT and telomerase defective adult zebrafish animals were profiled by RNASeq, in control conditions and 3 days after heart cryoinjury.
Project description:In mammals, myocardial cell death due to infarction results in scar formation and little regenerative response. In contrast, zebrafish have a high capacity to regenerate the heart after surgical resection of myocardial tissue. However, whether zebrafish can also regenerate lesions caused by cell death has not been tested. Here, we present a simple method for induction of necrotic lesions in the adult zebrafish heart based on cryoinjury. Despite widespread tissue death and loss of cardiomyocytes caused by these lesions, zebrafish display a robust regenerative response, which results in substantial clearing of the necrotic tissue and little scar formation. The cellular mechanisms underlying regeneration appear to be similar to those activated in response to ventricular resection. In particular, the epicardium activates a developmental gene program, proliferates and covers the lesion. Concomitantly, mature uninjured cardiomyocytes become proliferative and invade the lesion. Our injury model will be a useful tool to study the molecular mechanisms of natural heart regeneration in response to necrotic cell death.
Project description:Unlike adult mammals, zebrafish can regenerate their heart. A key mechanism for regeneration is the activation of the epicardium, leading to the establishment of a supporting scaffold for new cardiomyocytes, angiogenesis and cytokine secretion. Neuropilins are co-receptors that mediate signaling of kinase receptors for cytokines with crucial roles in zebrafish heart regeneration. We investigated the role of neuropilins in response to cardiac injury and heart regeneration. All four neuropilin isoforms (nrp1a, nrp1b, nrp2a and nrp2b) were upregulated by the activated epicardium and an nrp1a-knockout mutant showed a significant delay in heart regeneration and displayed persistent collagen deposition. The regenerating hearts of nrp1a mutants were less vascularized, and epicardial-derived cell migration and re-expression of the developmental gene wt1b was impaired. Moreover, cryoinjury-induced activation and migration of epicardial cells in heart explants were reduced in nrp1a mutants. These results identify a key role for Nrp1 in zebrafish heart regeneration, mediated through epicardial activation, migration and revascularization.
Project description:Cardiac neural crest cells contribute to important portions of the cardiovascular system including the aorticopulmonary septum and cardiac ganglion. Using replication incompetent avian retroviruses for precise high-resolution lineage analysis, we uncover a previously undescribed neural crest contribution to cardiomyocytes of the ventricles in Gallus gallus, supported by Wnt1-Cre lineage analysis in Mus musculus. To test the intriguing possibility that neural crest cells contribute to heart repair, we examined Danio rerio adult heart regeneration in the neural crest transgenic line, Tg(-4.9sox10:eGFP). Whereas the adult heart has few sox10+ cells in the apex, sox10 and other neural crest regulatory network genes are upregulated in the regenerating myocardium after resection. The results suggest that neural crest cells contribute to many cardiovascular structures including cardiomyocytes across vertebrates and to the regenerating heart of teleost fish. Thus, understanding molecular mechanisms that control the normal development of the neural crest into cardiomyocytes and reactivation of the neural crest program upon regeneration may open potential therapeutic approaches to repair heart damage in amniotes.
Project description:The adult heart is able to activate cardioprotective programmes and modifies its architecture in response to physiological or pathological changes. While mammalian cardiac remodelling often involves hypertrophic expansion, the adult zebrafish heart exploits hyperplastic growth. This capacity depends on the responsiveness of zebrafish cardiomyocytes to mitogenic signals throughout their entire life. Here, we have examined the role of inflammation on the stimulation of cell cycle activity in the context of heart preconditioning and regeneration. We used thoracotomy as a cardiac preconditioning model and cryoinjury as a model of cardiac infarction in the adult zebrafish. First, we performed a spatio-temporal characterization of leucocytes and cycling cardiac cells after thoracotomy. This analysis revealed a concomitance between the infiltration of inflammatory cells and the stimulation of the mitotic activity. However, decreasing the immune response using clodronate liposome injection, PLX3397 treatment or anti-inflammatory drugs surprisingly had no effect on the re-entry of cardiac cells into the cell cycle. In contrast, reducing inflammation using the same strategies after cryoinjury strongly impaired cardiac cell mitotic activity and the regenerative process. Taken together, our results show that, while the immune response is not necessary to induce cell-cycle activity in intact preconditioned hearts, inflammation is required for the regeneration of injured hearts in zebrafish.
Project description:BACKGROUND: In humans, myocardial infarction is characterized by irreversible loss of heart tissue, which becomes replaced with a fibrous scar. By contrast, teleost fish and urodele amphibians are capable of heart regeneration after a partial amputation. However, due to the lack of a suitable infarct model, it is not known how these animals respond to myocardial infarction. RESULTS: Here, we have established a heart infarct model in zebrafish using cryoinjury. In contrast to the common method of partial resection, cryoinjury results in massive cell death within 20% of the ventricular wall, similar to that observed in mammalian infarcts. As in mammals, the initial stages of the injury response include thrombosis, accumulation of fibroblasts and collagen deposition. However, at later stages, cardiac cells can enter the cell cycle and invade the infarct area in zebrafish. In the subsequent two months, fibrotic scar tissue is progressively eliminated by cell apoptosis and becomes replaced with a new myocardium, resulting in scarless regeneration. We show that tissue remodeling at the myocardial-infarct border zone is associated with accumulation of Vimentin-positive fibroblasts and with expression of an extracellular matrix protein Tenascin-C. Electrocardiogram analysis demonstrated that the reconstitution of the cardiac muscle leads to the restoration of the heart function. CONCLUSIONS: We developed a new cryoinjury model to induce myocardial infarction in zebrafish. Although the initial stages following cryoinjury resemble typical healing in mammals, the zebrafish heart is capable of structural and functional regeneration. Understanding the key healing processes after myocardial infarction in zebrafish may result in identification of the barriers to efficient cardiac regeneration in mammals.
Project description:Certain lower vertebrates like zebrafish activate proliferation of spared cardiomyocytes after cardiac injury to regenerate lost heart muscle. Here, we used translating ribosome affinity purification to profile translating RNAs in zebrafish cardiomyocytes during heart regeneration. We identified dynamic induction of several Jak1/Stat3 pathway members following trauma, events accompanied by cytokine production. Transgenic Stat3 inhibition in cardiomyocytes restricted injury-induced proliferation and regeneration, but did not reduce cardiogenesis during animal growth. The secreted protein Rln3a was induced in a Stat3-dependent manner by injury, and exogenous Rln3 delivery during Stat3 inhibition stimulated cardiomyocyte proliferation. Our results identify an injury-specific cardiomyocyte program essential for heart regeneration.