Publications

2022
H. Li, L. E. Trager, X. Liu, M. H. Hastings, C. Xiao, J. Guerra, S. To, G. Li, A. Yeri, R. Rodosthenous, M. G. Silverman, S. Das, A. V. Ambardekar, M. R. Bristow, J. M. Gonzalez-Rosa, and A. Rosenzweig. 2022. “lncExACT1 and DCHS2 Regulate Physiological and Pathological Cardiac Growth.” Circulation.Abstract
BACKGROUND: The heart grows in response to pathological and physiological stimuli. The former often precedes cardiomyocyte loss and heart failure; the latter paradoxically protects the heart and enhances cardiomyogenesis. The mechanisms underlying these differences remain incompletely understood. While long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) are important in cardiac development and disease, less is known about their roles in physiological hypertrophy or cardiomyogenesis. METHODS: RNA sequencing was applied to hearts from mice after eight weeks voluntary exercise-induced physiological hypertrophy and cardiomyogenesis or transverse aortic constriction (TAC) for two or eight weeks to induce pathological hypertrophy or heart failure. The top lncRNA candidate was overexpressed in hearts with adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors and inhibited with antisense locked nucleic acid (LNA)-GapmeRs to examine its function. Downstream effectors were identified through promoter analyses and binding assays. The functional roles of a novel downstream effector, dachsous cadherin-related 2 (DCHS2), were examined through transgenic overexpression in zebrafish and cardiac-specific deletion in Cas9-knockin mice. RESULTS: We identified exercise-regulated cardiac lncRNAs, termed lncExACTs. lncExACT1 was evolutionarily conserved and decreased in exercised hearts but increased in human and experimental heart failure. Cardiac lncExACT1 overexpression caused pathological hypertrophy and heart failure, while lncExACT1 inhibition induced physiological hypertrophy and cardiomyogenesis, protecting against cardiac fibrosis and dysfunction. lncExACT1 functioned by regulating microRNA-222, calcineurin signaling, and Hippo/Yap1 signaling through DCHS2. Cardiomyocyte DCHS2 overexpression in zebrafish induced pathological hypertrophy and impaired cardiac regeneration, promoting scarring after injury. In contrast, murine DCHS2 deletion induced physiological hypertrophy and promoted cardiomyogenesis. CONCLUSIONS: These studies identify lncExACT1-DCHS2 as a novel pathway regulating cardiac hypertrophy and cardiomyogenesis. lncExACT1-DCHS2 acts as a master switch toggling the heart between physiological and pathological growth to determine functional outcomes, providing a potentially tractable therapeutic target for harnessing the beneficial effects of exercise.
2021
S.Wu, J. Yang, G. Sun, J. Hu, Q. Zhang, J. Cai, D. Yuan, H. Li, Z. Hei, and W. Yao. 2021. “Macrophage extracellular traps aggravate iron overload-related liver ischaemia/reperfusion injury.” Br J Pharmacol, 178, Pp. 3783-3796.Abstract
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Macrophages regulate iron homeostasis in the liver and play important role in hepatic ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury. This study investigates the role of macrophages in iron overload-related hepatocyte damage during liver I/R. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Liver biopsies from patients undergoing partial hepatectomy with or without hepatic portal occlusion were recruited and markers of hepatocyte cell death and macrophage extracellular traps (METs) were detected. A murine hepatic I/R model was also established in high-iron diet-fed mice. Ferrostatin-1 and deferoxamine were administered to investigate the role of ferroptosis in hepatic I/R injury. The macrophage inhibitor liposome-encapsulated clodronate was used to investigate the interaction between macrophages and ferroptosis. AML12 hepatocytes and RAW264.7 macrophages were co-cultured in vitro. An inhibitor of macrophage extracellular traps was used to evaluate the role and mechanism of these traps and ferroptosis in hepatic I/R injury. KEY RESULTS: Hepatocyte macrophage extracellular trap formation and ferroptosis were greater in patients who underwent hepatectomy with hepatic portal occlusion and in mice subjected to hepatic I/R. Macrophage extracellular traps increased when macrophages were subjected to hypoxia/reoxygenation and when they were co-cultured with hepatocytes. Ferroptosis increased and post-hypoxic hepatocyte survival decreased, which were reversed by inhibition of macrophage extracellular traps. Ferroptosis inhibition attenuated post-ischaemic liver damage. Moreover, iron overload induced hepatic ferroptosis and exacerbated post-ischaemic liver damage, which were reversed by the iron chelator. CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS: Macrophage extracellular traps are in volved in regulating ferroptosis highlighting the therapeutic potential of macrophage extracellular traps and ferroptosis inhibition in reducing liver I/R injury.
H. Li and A. Rosenzweig. 2021. “Understanding Heart Failure With Preserved Ejection Fraction in a Diabetic Way.” JACC Basic Transl Sci, 6, Pp. 100-102.Abstract
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2020
Qiqi Zhu, Haobo Li, Xiang Xie, Xiaozhen Chen, Ramoji Kosuru, Sisi Li, Qingquan Lian, Chi Wai Cheung, Michael G Irwin, Ren-Shan Ge, and Zhengyuan Xia. 2020. “Adiponectin Facilitates Postconditioning Cardioprotection through Both AMPK-Dependent Nuclear and AMPK-Independent Mitochondrial STAT3 Activation.” Oxid Med Cell Longev, 2020, Pp. 4253457.Abstract
Myocardial ischemic postconditioning- (IPo-) mediated cardioprotection against myocardial ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury needs the activation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3), which involves adiponectin (APN). APN confers its biological effects through AMP-activated protein kinase- (AMPK-) dependent and AMPK-independent pathways. However, the role of AMPK in APN-mediated STAT3 activation in IPo cardioprotection is unknown. We hypothesized that APN-mediated STAT3 activation in IPo is AMPK-independent and that APN through AMPK-dependent STAT3 activation facilitates IPo cardioprotection. Here, Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to myocardial IR without or with IPo and/or APN. APN or IPo significantly improved postischemic cardiac function and reduced myocardial injury and oxidative stress, and their combination further attenuated postischemic myocardial injuries. APN or its combination with IPo but not IPo alone significantly increased AMPK activation and both nuclear and mitochondrial STAT3 activation, while IPo significantly enhanced mitochondrial but not nuclear STAT3 activation. In primarily isolated cardiomyocytes, recombined globular APN (gAd), hypoxic postconditioning (HPo), or their combination significantly attenuated hypoxia/reoxygenation-induced cell injury and increased nuclear and/or mitochondrial STAT3 activation. STAT3 inhibition had no impact on gAd or gAd in combination with HPo-induced AMPK activation but abolished their cellular protective effects. AMPK inhibition did not affect HPo cardioprotection but abolished gAd cardioprotection and disabled gAd to facilitate/enhance HPo cardioprotection and STAT3 activation. These results suggest that APN confers cardioprotection through AMPK-dependent and AMPK-independent STAT3 activation, while IPo confers cardioprotection through AMPK-independent mitochondrial STAT3 activation. Joint use of APN and IPo synergistically attenuated myocardial IR injury by activating STAT3 via distinct signaling pathways.
H. Li, M. H. Hastings, and A. Rosenzweig. 2020. “Exercise Training in Diabetes: Start Earlier or Exercise Harder.” Circ Res, 127, Pp. 1401-1403.
J. D. Roh, N. Houstis, A. Yu, B. Chang, A. Yeri, H. Li, R. Hobson, C. Lerchenmüller, A. Vujic, V. Chaudhari, F. Damilano, C. Platt, D. Zlotoff, R. T. Lee, R. Shah, M. Jerosch-Herold, and A. Rosenzweig. 2020. “Exercise training reverses cardiac aging phenotypes associated with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction in male mice.” Aging Cell, 19, Pp. e13159.Abstract
Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is the most common type of HF in older adults. Although no pharmacological therapy has yet improved survival in HFpEF, exercise training (ExT) has emerged as the most effective intervention to improving functional outcomes in this age-related disease. The molecular mechanisms by which ExT induces its beneficial effects in HFpEF, however, remain largely unknown. Given the strong association between aging and HFpEF, we hypothesized that ExT might reverse cardiac aging phenotypes that contribute to HFpEF pathophysiology and additionally provide a platform for novel mechanistic and therapeutic discovery. Here, we show that aged (24-30 months) C57BL/6 male mice recapitulate many of the hallmark features of HFpEF, including preserved left ventricular ejection fraction, subclinical systolic dysfunction, diastolic dysfunction, impaired cardiac reserves, exercise intolerance, and pathologic cardiac hypertrophy. Similar to older humans, ExT in old mice improved exercise capacity, diastolic function, and contractile reserves, while reducing pulmonary congestion. Interestingly, RNAseq of explanted hearts showed that ExT did not significantly modulate biological pathways targeted by conventional HF medications. However, it reversed multiple age-related pathways, including the global downregulation of cell cycle pathways seen in aged hearts, which was associated with increased capillary density, but no effects on cardiac mass or fibrosis. Taken together, these data demonstrate that the aged C57BL/6 male mouse is a valuable model for studying the role of aging biology in HFpEF pathophysiology, and provide a molecular framework for how ExT potentially reverses cardiac aging phenotypes in HFpEF.
J. D. Roh, N. Houstis, A. Yu, B. Chang, A. Yeri, H. Li, R. Hobson, C. Lerchenmüller, A. Vujic, V. Chaudhari, F. Damilano, C. Platt, D. Zlotoff, R. T. Lee, R. Shah, M. Jerosch-Herold, and A. Rosenzweig. 2020. “Exercise training reverses cardiac aging phenotypes associated with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction in male mice.” Aging Cell, 19, Pp. e13159.Abstract
Heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) is the most common type of HF in older adults. Although no pharmacological therapy has yet improved survival in HFpEF, exercise training (ExT) has emerged as the most effective intervention to improving functional outcomes in this age-related disease. The molecular mechanisms by which ExT induces its beneficial effects in HFpEF, however, remain largely unknown. Given the strong association between aging and HFpEF, we hypothesized that ExT might reverse cardiac aging phenotypes that contribute to HFpEF pathophysiology and additionally provide a platform for novel mechanistic and therapeutic discovery. Here, we show that aged (24-30 months) C57BL/6 male mice recapitulate many of the hallmark features of HFpEF, including preserved left ventricular ejection fraction, subclinical systolic dysfunction, diastolic dysfunction, impaired cardiac reserves, exercise intolerance, and pathologic cardiac hypertrophy. Similar to older humans, ExT in old mice improved exercise capacity, diastolic function, and contractile reserves, while reducing pulmonary congestion. Interestingly, RNAseq of explanted hearts showed that ExT did not significantly modulate biological pathways targeted by conventional HF medications. However, it reversed multiple age-related pathways, including the global downregulation of cell cycle pathways seen in aged hearts, which was associated with increased capillary density, but no effects on cardiac mass or fibrosis. Taken together, these data demonstrate that the aged C57BL/6 male mouse is a valuable model for studying the role of aging biology in HFpEF pathophysiology, and provide a molecular framework for how ExT potentially reverses cardiac aging phenotypes in HFpEF.
W. Yao, X. Han, M. Ge, C. Chen, X. Xiao, H. Li, and Z. Hei. 2020. “N(6)-methyladenosine (m(6)A) methylation in ischemia-reperfusion injury.” Cell Death Dis, 11, Pp. 478.Abstract
Ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury is common during surgery and often results in organ dysfunction. The mechanisms of I/R injury are complex, diverse, and not well understood. RNA methylation is a novel epigenetic modification that is involved in the regulation of various biological processes, such as immunity, response to DNA damage, tumorigenesis, metastasis, stem cell renewal, fat differentiation, circadian rhythms, cell development and differentiation, and cell division. Research on RNA modifications, specifically N6-methyladenosine (m(6)A), have confirmed that they are involved in the regulation of organ I/R injury. In this review, we summarized current understanding of the regulatory roles and significance of m(6)A RNA methylation in I/R injury in different organs.
W. Yao, X. Han, M. Ge, C. Chen, X. Xiao, H. Li, and Z. Hei. 2020. “N(6)-methyladenosine (m(6)A) methylation in ischemia-reperfusion injury.” Cell Death Dis, 11, Pp. 478.Abstract
Ischemia-reperfusion (I/R) injury is common during surgery and often results in organ dysfunction. The mechanisms of I/R injury are complex, diverse, and not well understood. RNA methylation is a novel epigenetic modification that is involved in the regulation of various biological processes, such as immunity, response to DNA damage, tumorigenesis, metastasis, stem cell renewal, fat differentiation, circadian rhythms, cell development and differentiation, and cell division. Research on RNA modifications, specifically N6-methyladenosine (m(6)A), have confirmed that they are involved in the regulation of organ I/R injury. In this review, we summarized current understanding of the regulatory roles and significance of m(6)A RNA methylation in I/R injury in different organs.
Haobo Li, Margaret H Hastings, James Rhee, Lena E Trager, Jason D Roh, and Anthony Rosenzweig. 2020. “Targeting Age-Related Pathways in Heart Failure.” Circ Res, 126, 4, Pp. 533-551.Abstract
During aging, deterioration in cardiac structure and function leads to increased susceptibility to heart failure. The need for interventions to combat this age-related cardiac decline is becoming increasingly urgent as the elderly population continues to grow. Our understanding of cardiac aging, and aging in general, is limited. However, recent studies of age-related decline and its prevention through interventions like exercise have revealed novel pathological and cardioprotective pathways. In this review, we summarize recent findings concerning the molecular mechanisms of age-related heart failure and highlight exercise as a valuable experimental platform for the discovery of much-needed novel therapeutic targets in this chronic disease.
2019
Weifeng Yao, Anshun Guo, Xue Han, Shan Wu, Chaojin Chen, Chenfang Luo, Haobo Li, Shangrong Li, and Ziqing Hei. 2019. “Aerosol inhalation of a hydrogen-rich solution restored septic renal function.” Aging (Albany NY), 11, 24, Pp. 12097-12113.Abstract
Sepsis-related acute kidney injury (AKI) is known to be caused by inflammation. We explored the renal protective effects of aerosol inhalation of a hydrogen-rich solution (HRS; hydrogen gas dissolved to saturation in saline) in a mouse model of septic AKI. Septic AKI was induced through 18 hours of cecal ligation and puncture. AKI occurred during the early stage of sepsis, as evidenced by increased blood urea nitrogen and serum creatinine levels, pathological changes, renal fibrosis and renal tubular epithelial cell apoptosis, accompanied by macrophage infiltration and M1 macrophage-associated pro-inflammatory cytokine ( and ) generation in renal tissues. Aerosol inhalation of the HRS increased anti-inflammatory cytokine ( and ) mRNA levels in renal tissues and promoted macrophage polarization to the M2 type, which generated additional anti-inflammatory cytokines ( and ). Ultimately, aerosol inhalation of HRS protected the kidneys and increased survival among septic mice. HRS was confirmed to promote M2 macrophage polarization in lipopolysaccharide-stimulated RAW 264.7 cells. The TGF-β1 receptor inhibitor SB-431542 partly reversed the effects of HRS on renal function, fibrosis, tubular epithelial cell apoptosis and senescence in mice. Thus, HRS aerosol inhalation appears highly useful for renal protection and inflammation reduction in septic AKI.
Weifeng Yao, Xue Han, Yu Guan, Jianqiang Guan, Shan Wu, Chaojin Chen, Haobo Li, and Ziqing Hei. 2019. “Neutrophil Elastase Inhibitors Suppress Oxidative Stress in Lung during Liver Transplantation.” Oxid Med Cell Longev, 2019, Pp. 7323986.Abstract
Background: Neutrophil infiltration plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of acute lung injury following liver transplantation (LT). Neutrophil elastase is released from neutrophils during pulmonary polymorphonuclear neutrophil activation and sequestration. The aim of the study was to investigate whether the inhibition of neutrophil elastase could lead to the restoration of pulmonary function following LT. Methods: In experiments, lung tissue and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) were collected at 2, 4, 8, and 24 h after rats were subjected to orthotopic autologous LT (OALT), and neutrophil infiltration was detected. Next, neutrophil elastase inhibitors, sivelestat sodium hydrate (exogenous) and serpin family B member 1 (SERPINB1) (endogenous), were administered to rats before OALT, and neutrophil infiltration, pulmonary oxidative stress, and barrier function were measured at 8 h after OALT. Results: Obvious neutrophil infiltration occurred from 2 h and peaked at 8 h in the lungs of rats after they were subjected to OALT, as evidenced by an increase in naphthol-positive cells, BALF neutrophil elastase activity, and lung myeloperoxidase activity. Treatment with neutrophil elastase inhibitors, either sivelestat sodium hydrate or SERPINB1, effectively reduced lung naphthol-positive cells and BALF inflammatory cell content, increased expression of lung HO-1 and tight junction proteins ZO-1 and occludin, and increased the activity of superoxide dismutase. Conclusion: Neutrophil elastase inhibitors, sivelestat sodium hydrate and SERPINB1, both reduced lung neutrophil infiltration and pulmonary oxidative stress and finally restored pulmonary barrier function.
Tian-Tian Wang, Mao-Mao Shi, Xiao-Long Liao, Yu-Quan Li, Hao-Xiang Yuan, Yan Li, Xiang Liu, Da-Sheng Ning, Yue-Ming Peng, Fan Yang, Zhi-Wei Mo, Yu-Mei Jiang, Ying-Qi Xu, Haobo Li, Min Wang, Zhi-Jun Ou, Zhengyuan Xia, and Jing-Song Ou. 2019. “Overexpression of inducible nitric oxide synthase in the diabetic heart compromises ischemic postconditioning.” J Mol Cell Cardiol, 129, Pp. 144-153.Abstract
Ischemia postconditioning (PTC) can reduce myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury. However, the effectiveness of PTC cardioprotection is reduced or lost in diabetes and the mechanisms are largely unclear. Hyperglycemia can induce overexpression of inducible nitric oxide synthesis (iNOS) in the myocardium of diabetic subjects. However, it is unknown whether or not iNOS especially its overexpression plays an important role in the loss of cardioprotection of PTC in diabetes. C57BL6 and iNOS mice were treated with streptozotocin to induce diabetes. Part of diabetic C57BL6 mice were also treated with an iNOS specific inhibitor, 1400 W. Mice were subjected to myocardial ischemia/ reperfusion with/without PTC. The hemodynamic parameters, plasma levels of cardiac troponin T (cTnT), TNF-α, IL-6 and nitric oxide (NO) were monitored. The myocardial infarct size, superoxide anion (O) generation, nitrotyrosine production and apoptosis were measured. The expression of phosphorylated Akt, endothelial NOS (eNOS), iNOS and Erk1/2 in ischemic heart were detected by immunoblot analysis. In diabetic C57BL6 and iNOS mice, the post-ischemic hemodynamics were impaired, the cTnT, TNF-α, IL-6 level, myocardial infarct size, apoptotic index, O and nitrotyrosine generation were increased and the Akt/eNOS signal pathways were inhibited. PTC improved hemodynamic parameters, reduced cTnT level, myocardial infarct size, apoptotic index, O and nitrotyrosine generation and activated Akt/eNOS and Erk1/2 signal pathways in both non-diabetic C57BL6 and iNOS mice as well as diabetic iNOS mice, but not in diabetic C57BL6 mice. PTC also increased NO production in both non-diabetic and diabetic C57BL6 and iNOS mice, and enhanced iNOS expression in non-diabetic C57BL6 mice. 1400 W restored the cardioprotection of PTC in diabetic C57BL6 mice. Our data demonstrated that PTC reduced myocardial ischemia/reperfusion injury in non-diabetic mice but not C57BL6 diabetic mice. Deletion of iNOS restored the cardioprotection of PTC in diabetic mice. Our findings suggest that iNOS plays a key role in the reduction of cardioprotection of PTC in diabetes and may provide a therapeutic target for diabetic patients.
Weifeng Yao, Lydia Wai Tai, Yiwei Liu, Ziqing Hei, and Haobo Li. 2019. “Oxidative Stress and Inflammation Interaction in Ischemia Reperfusion Injury: Role of Programmed Cell Death.” Oxid Med Cell Longev, 2019, Pp. 6780816.
2018
Xiang Xie, Dan Yan, Haobo Li, Qiqi Zhu, Jun Li, Yong-Ping Fang, Chi Wai Cheung, Michael G Irwin, Zhengyuan Xia, and Qingquan Lian. 2018. “Enhancement of Adiponectin Ameliorates Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease via Inhibition of FoxO1 in Type I Diabetic Rats.” J Diabetes Res, 2018, Pp. 6254340.Abstract
Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a common liver disease which has been previously shown to be associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Recent research has indicated that type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is also involved in the development of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, whereas the underlying mechanisms are largely unknown. Forkhead box O1 (FoxO1) and adiponectin (APN) have been proposed to play an important role in the processes in NAFLD in T1DM. We herein investigated the effects of FoxO1 and APN on the development of NAFLD and the underlying mechanism in streptozotocin-induced T1DM. Serum liver enzymes AST, ALT, and triglyceride (TG) were determined by commercially available kits. Blood glucose levels were measured by the OneTouch Ultra glucose meter. Relevant protein expression was tested by Western blot analysis. Results showed that serum AST, ALT, and TG were all significantly increased in T1DM rats, which was ameliorated by application of APN or selective inhibition of FoxO1 with AS1842856. Moreover, APN and AS1842856 both decreased the expression of liver nuclear FoxO1 which was significantly increased in diabetic rats. However, the inhibition of FoxO1 did not alter the expression of APN and its receptors. We also found that Akt1 expression was significantly declined in diabetic rat which was restored by APN and moderately and significantly increased by FoxO1 inhibition. It is concluded that APN ameliorates NAFLD via inhibition of FoxO1 through Akt1/FoxO1 signaling pathway.
Haobo Li, Zhengyuan Xia, Yanfang Chen, Dake Qi, and Hong Zheng. 2018. “Mechanism and Therapies of Oxidative Stress-Mediated Cell Death in Ischemia Reperfusion Injury.” Oxid Med Cell Longev, 2018, Pp. 2910643.
Chunyan Wang, Haobo Li, Sheng Wang, Xiaowen Mao, Dan Yan, Stanley S Wong, Zhengyuan Xia, and Michael G Irwin. 2018. “Repeated Non-Invasive Limb Ischemic Preconditioning Confers Cardioprotection Through PKC-Ԑ/STAT3 Signaling in Diabetic Rats.” Cell Physiol Biochem, 45, 5, Pp. 2107-2121.Abstract
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Protein kinase C(PKC)-ε activation is a mechanism of preconditioning cardioprotection but its role in repeated non-invasive limb ischemic preconditioning (rNLIP) mediated cardioprotection against myocardial ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury in diabetes is unknown. METHODS: Eight-week streptozotocin-induced diabetic and non-diabetic Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to I/R without or with rNLIP. In vitro, H9C2 cells were cultured with high glucose (HG) and subjected to hypoxia/re-oxygenation (H/R) without or with PKC-ε or STAT3 gene knock-down in the absence or presence of remote time hypoxia preconditioning (HPC). RESULTS: Diabetic rats displayed larger post-ischemic myocardial infarct size and higher troponin-I release with concomitant cardiac PKC-ԑ overexpression and activation manifested as increased membrane translocation, while phosphorylated STAT3 (p-STAT3) and Akt (p-Akt) were lower compared to non-diabetic rats (all P<0.05). rNLIP reduced infarct size in both non-diabetic and diabetic rats. rNLIP reduced post-ischemic cardiac PKC-ԑ activation in diabetic while increased PKC-ԑ activation in non-diabetic rats, resulting in increased cardiac p-STAT3 and p-Akt. In H9C2 cells, HG increased PKC-ԑ expression and exacerbated post-H/R injury, accompanied with reduced p-STAT3 and p-Akt, which were all reverted by HPC. These HPC protective effects were abolished by either PKC-ԑ or STAT3 gene knock-down, except that PKC-ԑ gene knock-down reverted HG and H/R-induced reduction of p-STAT3. CONCLUSION: rNLIP attenuates diabetic heart I/R injury by mitigating HG-induced PKC-ԑ overexpression and, subsequently, activating STAT3.
Lydia Wai Tai, Zhiqiang Pan, Liting Sun, Haobo Li, Pan Gu, Stanley Sau Ching Wong, Sookja K Chung, and Chi Wai Cheung. 2018. “Suppression of Pax2 Attenuates Allodynia and Hyperalgesia through ET-1-ETAR-NFAT5 Signaling in a Rat Model of Neuropathic Pain.” Neuroscience, 384, Pp. 139-151.Abstract
Endothelin-1 (ET-1) and its receptors (ETAR/ETBR) emerge to be a key signaling axis in neuropathic pain processing and are recognized as new therapeutic targets. Yet, little is known on the functional regulation of ET-1 axis during neuropathic pain. Bioinformatics analysis indicated that paired box gene 2 (Pax2) or nuclear factor of activated T-cells 5 (NFAT5), two transcription factors involved in the modulation of neurotransmission, may regulate ET-1. Therefore, we hypothesized that ET-1 axis may be regulated by Pax2 or NFAT5 in the development of neuropathic pain. After partial sciatic nerve ligation (pSNL), rats displayed allodynia and hyperalgesia, which was associated with increased mRNA and protein expressions of spinal Pax2, NFAT5, and mRNA levels of ET-1 and ETAR, but not ETBR. Knockdown of Pax2 or NFAT5 with siRNA, or inhibition of ETAR with BQ-123 attenuated pSNL-induced pain-like behaviors. At molecular level, Pax2 siRNA, but not NFAT5 siRNA, downregulated ET-1 and ETAR, while ETAR inhibitor reduced NFAT5, indicating Pax2 in the upstream of ET-1 axis with NFAT5 in the downstream. Further, suppression of Pax2 (inhibiting ET-1) or impairment of ET-1 signaling (inhibition of ETAR and/or decrease of NFAT5) deactivated mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK) and nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) signaling pathways, supporting the significance of functional regulation of ET-1 axis in neuropathic pain signaling. These findings demonstrate that Pax2 targeting ET-1-ETAR-NFAT5 is a novel regulatory mechanism underlying neuropathic pain.
2017
Q. Wu, T. Wang, S. Chen, Q. Zhou, H. Li, N. Hu, Y. Feng, N. Dong, S. Yao, and Z. Xia. 2017. “Cardiac protective effects of remote ischaemic preconditioning in children undergoing tetralogy of fallot repair surgery: a randomized controlled trial.” Eur Heart JEur Heart JEur Heart J.Abstract
Aims: Remote ischaemic preconditioning (RIPC) by inducing brief ischaemia in distant tissues protects the heart against myocardial ischaemia-reperfusion injury (IRI) in children undergoing open-heart surgery, although its effectiveness in adults with comorbidities is controversial. The effectiveness and mechanism of RIPC with respect to myocardial IRI in children with tetralogy of Fallot (ToF), a severe cyanotic congenital cardiac disease, undergoing open heart surgery are unclear. We hypothesized that RIPC can confer cardioprotection in children undergoing ToF repair surgery. Methods and results: Overall, 112 ToF children undergoing radical open cardiac surgery using cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) were randomized to either a RIPC group (n = 55) or a control group (n = 57). The RIPC protocol consisted of three cycles of 5-min lower limb occlusion and 5-min reperfusion using a cuff-inflator. Serum inflammatory cytokines and cardiac injury markers were measured before surgery and after CPB. Right ventricle outflow tract (RVOT) tissues were collected during the surgery to assess hypoxia-inducible factor (Hif)-1alpha and other signalling proteins. Cardiac mitochondrial injury was assessed by electron microscopy. The primary results showed that the length of stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) was longer in the control group than in the RIPC group (52.30 +/- 13.43 h vs. 47.55 +/- 10.34 h, respectively, P = 0.039). Patients in the control group needed longer post-operative ventilation time compared to the RIPC group (35.02 +/- 6.56 h vs. 31.96 +/- 6.60 h, respectively, P = 0.016). The levels of post-operative serum troponin-T at 12 and 18 h, CK-MB at 24 h, as well as the serum h-FABP levels at 6 h, after CPB were significantly lower, which was coincident with significantly higher protein expression of cardiac Hif-1alpha, p-Akt, p-STAT3, p-STAT5, and p-eNOS and less vacuolization of mitochondria in the RIPC group compared to the control group. Conclusion: In ToF children undergoing open heart surgery, RIPC attenuates myocardial IRI and improves the short-term prognosis.
W. Yao, H. Li, X. Han, C. Chen, Y. Zhang, W. L. Tai, Z. Xia, and Z. Hei. 2017. “MG53 anchored by dysferlin to cell membrane reduces hepatocyte apoptosis which induced by ischaemia/reperfusion injury in vivo and in vitro.” J Cell Mol MedJ Cell Mol MedJ Cell Mol Med.Abstract
Hepatic ischaemia/reperfusion (HIR) induces severe damage on hepatocyte cell membrane, which leads to hepatocyte death and the subsequent HIR injury. In this study, we investigated the role and the mechanism of mitsugumin-53 (MG53), a novel cell membrane repair protein, in protecting the liver against HIR injury. Rats were subjected to sham operation or 70% warm HIR with or without recombined MG53 (rhMG53), caudal vein-injected 2 hrs before inducing HIR. In vitro, cultured hepatocyte AML12 cells were subjected to hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R) in the presence of rhMG53 and/or dysferlin gene shRNAs or adenovirus transfection. HIR resulted in severe liver injury manifested as severe liver histological changes and increased AST and ALT release. Post-ischaemic hepatic oxidative stress was significantly enhanced demonstrated by elevated dihydroethidium level, increased 4-hydroxynonenal, enhanced 15-F2t-isoprostane and decreased SOD activity. rhMG53 administration attenuated post-HIR liver injury, decreased liver oxidative stress and further enhanced dysferlin protein expression and its colocalization with MG53. Similarly, H/R induced AML12 cell injury and oxidative stress, which were abolished by either rhMG53 or dysferlin overexpression but were exacerbated by dysferlin gene knockdown. Dysferlin overexpression further increased H/R-induced increased colocalization of MG53 and dysferlin. In conclusion, MG53 was anchored by dysferlin to reduce oxidative stress and cell death and attenuate HIR injury.

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