Heart failure is a leading cause of death of people in South Asia, and cardiomyopathy is a major cause of heart failure. Myosin binding protein C (MYBPC3) is expressed in the heart muscle, where it regulates the cardiac response to adrenergic stimulation and is important for the structural integrity of the sarcomere. Mutations in the MYBPC3 gene are associated with hypertrophic or dilated cardiomyopathies. A 25-base-pair deletion in intron 32 causes skipping of the downstream exon and is associated with familial cardiomyopathy. To date, this deletion is found primarily in India and South Asia, although it is also found at low frequency in Southeast Asia. In order to better characterize the distribution of this variant, we determined its frequency in 447 individuals from 19 populations, including 10 populations from India and neighboring populations from Pakistan and Nepal. The deletion frequency is over 8% in some of our Indian samples, and it is not present in any of the populations we sampled outside of India. The differences in the deletion frequencies among populations in India are consistent with patterns of variation previously reported and with patterns we observed among Indian populations based on high-density SNP chip data. Our results indicate the MYBPC3 deletion is primarily found among Indian populations, and that its distribution is consistent with genome-wide patterns of variation in India.
Mutations in MYBPC3 encoding cardiac myosin binding protein C are common genetic cause of hereditary cardiac myopathies. An intronic 25-bp deletion in MYBPC3 at 3′ region is associated with dilated (DCM) and hypertrophic (HCM) cardiomyopathies in Southeast Asia. However, the frequency of MYBPC3 25 bp deletion and associated clinical presentation has not been established in an unrelated cohort of left ventricular dysfunction (LVD) secondary to coronary artery disease (CAD) patients.
We sought to determine the role of MYBPC3 25 bp polymorphism on LVD in two cohorts of CAD patients.
Methods and Results
The study included 265 consecutive patients with angiographically confirmed CAD and 220 controls. MYBPC3 25 bp polymorphism was determined by polymerase chain reaction. Our results showed that carrier status of MYBPC3 25 bp deletion was associated with significant compromised left ventricle ejection fraction (LVEF ≤45) in CAD patients (p value = <0.001; OR = 4.49). To validate our results, we performed a replication study in additional 140 cases with similar clinical characteristics and results again confirmed consistent findings (p = 0.029; OR = 3.3). Also, presence of the gene deletion did not have significant association in CAD patients with preserved ejection fraction (LVEF>45) (p value = 0.1; OR = 2.3).
The frequency of MYBPC3 DW genotype and D allele was associated with compromised LVEF implying that genetic variants of MYBPC3 encoding mutant structural sarcomere protein could increase susceptibility to left ventricular dysfunction. Therefore, 25 bp deletion in MYBPC3 may represent a genetic marker for cardiac failure in CAD patients from Southeast Asia.
In this part of a series on cardiogenetic founder mutations in the Netherlands, we review the Dutch founder mutations in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) patients.
HCM is a common autosomal dominant genetic disease affecting at least one in 500 persons in the general population. Worldwide, most mutations in HCM patients are identified in genes encoding sarcomeric proteins, mainly in the myosin-binding protein C gene (MYBPC3, OMIM #600958) and the beta myosin heavy chain gene (MYH7, OMIM #160760). In the Netherlands, the great majority of mutations occur in the MYBPC3, involving mainly three Dutch founder mutations in the MYBPC3 gene, the c.2373_2374insG, the c.2864_2865delCT and the c.2827C>T mutation. In this review, we describe the genetics of HCM, the genotype-phenotype relation of Dutch founder MYBPC3 gene mutations, the prevalence and the geographic distribution of the Dutch founder mutations, and the consequences for genetic counselling and testing. (Neth Heart J 2010;18:248–54.20505798)
Cardiomyopathy; Founder Effect; Mutation; Myosin-binding Protein C
Myosin binding protein C (MYBPC) is a crucial component of the sarcomere and an important regulator of muscle function. While mutations in different myosin binding protein C (MYBPC) genes are well known causes of various human diseases, such as hypertrophic (HCM) and dilated (DCM) forms of cardiomyopathy as well as skeletal muscular disorders, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain not well understood. A variety of MYBPC3 (cardiac isoform) mutations have been studied in great detail and several corresponding genetically altered mouse models have been generated. Most MYBPC3 mutations may cause haploinsufficiency and with it they may cause a primary increase in calcium sensitivity which is potentially able to explain major features observed in HCM patients such as the hypercontractile phenotype and the well known secondary effects such as myofibrillar disarray, fibrosis, myocardial hypertrophy and remodelling including arrhythmogenesis. However the presence of poison peptides in some cases cannot be fully excluded and most probably other mechanisms are also at play. Here we shall discuss MYBPC interacting proteins and possible pathways linked to cardiomyopathy and heart failure.
Myosin binding protein C; Myocardial function
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common genetic cardiac disease. Fourteen sarcomeric and sarcomere-related genes have been implicated in HCM etiology, those encoding β-myosin heavy chain (MYH7) and cardiac myosin binding protein C (MYBPC3) reported as the most frequently mutated: in fact, these account for around 50% of all cases related to sarcomeric gene mutations, which are collectively responsible for approximately 70% of all HCM cases. Here, we used denaturing high-performance liquid chromatography followed by bidirectional sequencing to screen the coding regions of MYH7 and MYBPC3 in a cohort (n = 125) of Italian patients presenting with HCM. We found 6 MHY7 mutations in 9/125 patients and 18 MYBPC3 mutations in 19/125 patients. Of the three novel MYH7 mutations found, two were missense, and one was a silent mutation; of the eight novel MYBPC3 mutations, one was a substitution, three were stop codons, and four were missense mutations. Thus, our cohort of Italian HCM patients did not harbor the high frequency of mutations usually found in MYH7 and MYBPC3. This finding, coupled to the clinical diversity of our cohort, emphasizes the complexity of HCM and the need for more inclusive investigative approaches in order to fully understand the pathogenesis of this disease. J. Cell. Physiol. 226: 2894–2900, 2011. © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Sudden cardiac death due to malignant ventricular arrhythmia is a devastating manifestation of cardiac hypertrophy. Sarcomere protein myosin binding protein C is functionally related to cardiac diastolic function and hypertrophy. Zebrafish is a better model to study human electrophysiology and arrhythmia than rodents because of the electrophysiological characteristics similar to those of humans.
Methods and Results
We established a zebrafish model of cardiac hypertrophy and diastolic dysfunction by genetic knockdown of myosin binding protein C gene (mybpc3) and investigated the electrophysiological phenotypes in this model. We found expression of zebrafish mybpc3 restrictively in the heart and slow muscle, and mybpc3 gene was evolutionally conservative with sequence homology between zebrafish and human mybpc3 genes. Zebrafish with genetic knockdown of mybpc3 by morpholino showed ventricular hypertrophy with increased myocardial wall thickness and diastolic heart failure, manifesting as decreased ventricular diastolic relaxation velocity, pericardial effusion, and dilatation of the atrium. In terms of electrophysiological phenotypes, mybpc3 knockdown fish had a longer ventricular action potential duration and slower ventricular diastolic calcium reuptake, both of which are typical electrophysiological features in human cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure. Impaired calcium reuptake resulted in increased susceptibility to calcium transient alternans and action potential duration alternans, which have been proved to be central to the genesis of malignant ventricular fibrillation and a sensitive marker of sudden cardiac death.
mybpc3 knockdown in zebrafish recapitulated the morphological, mechanical, and electrophysiological phenotypes of human cardiac hypertrophy and diastolic heart failure. Our study also first demonstrated arrhythmogenic cardiac alternans in cardiac hypertrophy.
animal model; cardiac alternans; diastolic dysfunction; heart failure with normal ejection fraction; hypertrophy; zebrafish
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is a complex cardiac muscular disorder, inherited as an autosomal dominant disease with variable penetrance. Cardiac myosin-binding protein C (MyBPC) is the predominant myosin-binding protein isoform in the heart muscle. One hundred forty-seven mutations have been detected in MYBPC3, accounting for 15% of all HCM cases.
To screen exons 16, 18, 19, 22, 24, 28, 30, 31 and 34 in the MYBPC3 gene in Indian HCM patients.
Sixty control and 95 HCM samples were collected from cardiology units of the CARE Hospital (Nampally, Banjara Hills, Secunderabad, India) for genomic DNA isolation followed by polymerase chain reaction and single-stranded conformational polymorphism analysis.
Screening of the exons revealed two variations – one novel frame shift mutation in exon 19 at the nucleotide position 11577^11578 and one novel single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in codon 1093 of exon 31, coding for glycine with a C>T transition (GGC/GGT), in addition to the seven known SNPs mainly in the intronic region and one known missense mutation D770N in this population.
The novel frame shift mutation identified in exon 19, D570fs, with the insertion of an adenine residue in codon 570 coding for aspartate, results in a premature termination codon that produces a truncated protein lacking myosin- and titin-binding sites, explaining the role of the nonsense-mediated decay pathway. A novel SNP identified in codon 1093 of exon 31 was found to be a synonymous codon, which may have a regulatory effect at the translational level, attributing to affinity differences between codon-anticodon interactions. The screening of this gene may be relevant in the Indian context.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; MYBPC3; Nonsense-mediated decay pathway; Novel mutation
DNA studies in familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHC) have shown that it is caused by mutations in genes coding for proteins which make up the muscle sarcomere. The majority of mutations in the FHC genes result from missense changes, although one of the most recent genes to be identified (cardiac myosin binding protein C gene, MYBPC3) has predominantly DNA mutations which produce truncated proteins. Both dominant negative and haploinsufficiency models have been proposed to explain the molecular changes in FHC. This study describes two Australian families with FHC caused by different mutations in MYBPC3. The first produces a de novo Asn755Lys change in a cardiac specific domain of MYBPC3. The second is a Gln969X nonsense mutation which results in a truncated protein. Neither mutation has previously been found in the MYBPC3 gene. The consequences of DNA changes on the function of cardiac myosin binding protein C are discussed in relation to current molecular models for this disorder.
Perturbations in sarcomeric function may in part underlie systolic and diastolic dysfunction of the failing heart. Sarcomeric dysfunction has been ascribed to changes in phosphorylation status of sarcomeric proteins caused by an altered balance between intracellular kinases and phosphatases during the development of cardiac disease. In the present review we discuss changes in phosphorylation of the thick filament protein myosin binding protein C (cMyBP-C) reported in failing myocardium, with emphasis on phosphorylation changes observed in familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy caused by mutations in MYBPC3. Moreover, we will discuss assays which allow to distinguish between functional consequences of mutant sarcomeric proteins and (mal)adaptive changes in sarcomeric protein phosphorylation.
Cardiac myosin binding protein C; Phosphorylation; Sarcomere; Heart failure; Familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
Mutations in myofilament proteins, most commonly MYBPC3-encoded myosin binding protein C and MYH7-encoded β-myosin heavy chain, can cause hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). Despite significant advances in structure-function relationships pertaining to the cardiac sarcomere, there is limited knowledge of how a mutation leads to clinical HCM. We therefore set out to study expression and localization of myofilament proteins in left ventricular tissue of patients with HCM.
Methods and Results
Frozen surgical myectomy specimens from 47 patients with HCM were examined and genotyped for mutations involving 8 myofilament-encoding genes. Myofilament protein levels were quantified by western blot with localization graded from immunohistochemical staining of tissue sections. Overall, 25/47 (53%) patients had myofilament-HCM including 12 with MYBPC3-HCM and 9 with MYH7-HCM. Compared to healthy heart tissue, levels of myofilament proteins were increased in patients manifesting a mutation in either gene. Patients with a frameshift mutation predicted to truncate MYBPC3 exhibited marked disturbances in protein localization as compared to missense mutations in either MYBPC3 or MYH7.
In this first expression study in human HCM tissue, increased myofilament protein levels in patients with either MYBPC3 or MYH7-mediated HCM suggest a poison peptide mechanism. Specifically, the mechanism of dysfunction may vary according to the genetic subgroup suggested by a distinctly abnormal distribution of myofilament proteins in patients manifesting a truncation mutation in MYBPC3.
Cardiomyopathy; Hypertrophy; Genetics; Protein
Idiopathic (primary) hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is mainly caused by mutations in genes encoding sarcomeric proteins. One of the most commonly mutated HCM genes is the myosin binding protein C (MYBPC3) gene. Mutations in this gene lead mainly to truncation of the protein which gives rise to a relatively mild phenotype. Pure HCM in neonates is rare and most of the time childhood HCM occurs in association with another underlying condition.
To study the presence of mutations in the MYBPC3 gene in idiopathic childhood HCM.
MYBPC3 coding region and splice junction variation were analysed by denaturing high performance liquid chromatography (DHPLC) and sequencing in DNA isolated from two neonates with severe unexplained HCM, who died within the first weeks of life.
Truncating mutations were found in both alleles of the MYBPC3 gene in both patients, suggesting there was no functional copy of the MYBPC3 protein. Patient 1 carried the maternally inherited c.2373_2374insG mutation and the paternally inherited splice‐donor site mutation c.1624+1G→A. Patient 2 carried the maternally inherited frameshift mutation c.3288delA (p.Glu1096fsX92) and the paternally inherited non‐sense mutation c.2827C→T (p.Arg943X).
The findings indicate the need for mutation analysis of genes encoding sarcomeric proteins in childhood HCM and the possibility of compound heterozygosity.
hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; childhood;
MYBPC3 gene; compound heterozygosity
Familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is a genetically heterogeneous autosomal dominant disease, caused by mutations in several sarcomeric protein genes. So far, seven genes have been shown to be associated with the disease with the β-myosin heavy chain (MYH7) and the cardiac myosin binding protein C (MYBPC3) genes being the most frequently involved.
We performed electrocardiography (ECG) and echocardiography in 15 subjects with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy from a French Caribbean family. Genetic analyses were performed on genomic DNA by haplotype analysis with microsatellite markers at each locus involved and mutation screening by single strand conformation polymorphism analysis. Based on ECG and echocardiography, eight subjects were affected and presented a classical phenotype of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Two new mutations cosegregating with the disease were found, one located in the MYH7 gene exon 15 (Glu483Lys) and the other in the MYBPC3 gene exon 30 (Glu1096 termination codon). Four affected subjects carried the MYH7 gene mutation, two the MYBPC3 gene mutation, and two were doubly heterozygous for the two mutations. The doubly heterozygous patients exhibited marked left ventricular hypertrophy, which was significantly greater than in the other affected subjects.
We report for the first time the simultaneous presence of two pathological mutations in two different genes in the context of familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. This double heterozygosity is not lethal but is associated with a more severe phenotype.
Keywords: hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; genetics; β-myosin heavy chain gene; cardiac myosin binding protein C gene
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is frequently caused by mutations in MYBPC3 encoding cardiac myosin-binding protein C (cMyBP-C). The mechanisms leading from gene mutations to the HCM phenotype remain incompletely understood, partially because current mouse models of HCM do not faithfully reflect the human situation and early hypertrophy confounds the interpretation of functional alterations. The goal of this study was to evaluate whether myofilament Ca2+ sensitization and diastolic dysfunction are associated or precede the development of left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) in HCM. We evaluated the function of skinned and intact cardiac myocytes, as well as the intact heart in a recently developed Mybpc3-targeted knock-in mouse model carrying a point mutation frequently associated with HCM. Compared to wild-type, 10-week old homozygous knock-in mice exhibited i) higher myofilament Ca2+ sensitivity in skinned ventricular trabeculae, ii) lower diastolic sarcomere length, and faster Ca2+ transient decay in intact myocytes, and iii) LVH, reduced fractional shortening, lower E/A and E′/A′, and higher E/E′ ratios by echocardiography and Doppler analysis, suggesting systolic and diastolic dysfunction. In contrast, heterozygous knock-in mice, which mimic the human HCM situation, did not exhibit LVH or systolic dysfunction, but exhibited higher myofilament Ca2+ sensitivity, faster Ca2+ transient decay, and diastolic dysfunction. These data demonstrate that myofilament Ca2+ sensitization and diastolic dysfunction are early phenotypic consequences of Mybpc3 mutations independent of LVH. The accelerated Ca2+ transients point to compensatory mechanisms directed towards normalization of relaxation. We propose that HCM is a model for diastolic heart failure and this mouse model could be valuable in studying mechanisms and treatment modalities.
► Absence of left ventricular hypertrophy in heterozygous Mybpc3-targeted knock-in mice. ► Myofilament Ca2+ sensitization in heterozygous Mybpc3-targeted knock-in mice. ► Diastolic dysfunction independent of left ventricular hypertrophy. ► Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy as a model of diastolic heart failure.
cMyBP-C, cardiac myosin-binding protein C; cTnI, cardiac troponin I; CSQ, calsequestrin; HCM, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; Het, heterozygous Mybpc3-targeted knock-in mice; KI, homozygous Mybpc3-targeted knock-in mice; KO, homozygous Mybpc3-targeted knock-out mice; LVH, left ventricular hypertrophy; max F, maximal Ca2+-activated force; MYBPC3, human cardiac myosin-binding protein C gene; Mybpc3, mouse cardiac myosin-binding protein C gene; NCX, Na+/Ca2+ exchanger; nH, Hill coefficient; pCa50, log of [Ca2+] required for 50% of maximal activation; PKA, cAMP-dependent protein kinase A; PLB, phospholamban; SERCA2, SR-Ca2+ ATPase; SL, sarcomere length; SR, sarcoplasmic reticulum; Ca2+ sensitivity; Ca2+ transient; Diastolic dysfunction; Hypertrophy; Mouse model
Mutations in MYBPC3 encoding myosin binding protein C belong to the most frequent causes of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) and may also lead to dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). MYBPC3 mutations initially were considered to cause a benign form of HCM. The aim of this study was to examine the clinical outcome of patients and their relatives with 18 different MYBPC3 mutations.
87 patients with HCM and 71 patients with DCM were screened for MYBPC3 mutations by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and sequencing. Close relatives of mutation carriers were genotyped for the respective mutation. Relatives with mutation were then evaluated by echocardiography and magnetic resonance imaging. A detailed family history regarding adverse clinical events was recorded.
In 16 HCM (18.4%) and two DCM (2.8%) index patients a mutation was detected. Seven mutations were novel. Mutation carriers exhibited no additional mutations in genes MYH7, TNNT2, TNNI3, ACTC and TPM1. Including relatives of twelve families, a total number of 42 mutation carriers was identified of which eleven (26.2%) had at least one adverse event. Considering the twelve families and six single patients with mutations, 45 individuals with cardiomyopathy and nine with borderline phenotype were identified. Among the 45 patients, 23 (51.1%) suffered from an adverse event. In eleven patients of seven families an unexplained sudden death was reported at the age between 13 and 67 years. Stroke or a transient ischemic attack occurred in six patients of five families. At least one adverse event occurred in eleven of twelve families.
MYBPC3 mutations can be associated with cardiac events such as progressive heart failure, stroke and sudden death even at younger age. Therefore, patients with MYBPC3 mutations require thorough clinical risk assessment.
Myosin binding protein C (MYBPC3) plays a role in ventricular relaxation. The aim of the study was to investigate the association between cardiac myosin binding protein C (MYBPC3) gene polymorphisms and diastolic heart failure (DHF) in a human case-control study.
A total of 352 participants of 1752 consecutive patients from the National Taiwan University Hospital and its affiliated hospital were enrolled. 176 patients diagnosed with DHF confirmed by echocardiography were recruited. Controls were matched 1-to-1 by age, sex, hypertension, diabetes, renal function and medication use. We genotyped 12 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) according to HapMap Han Chinese Beijing databank across a 40 kb genetic region containing the MYBPC3 gene and the neighboring DNA sequences to capture 100% of haplotype variance in all SNPs with minor allele frequencies ≧5%. We also analyzed associations of these tagging SNPs and haplotypes with DHF and linkage disequilibrium (LD) structure of the MYBPC3 gene.
In a single locus analysis, SNP rs2290149 was associated with DHF (allele-specific p = 0.004; permuted p = 0.031). The SNP with a minor allele frequency of 9.4%, had an odds ratio 2.14 (95% CI 1.25–3.66; p = 0.004) for the additive model and 2.06 for the autosomal dominant model (GG+GA : AA, 95% CI 1.17–3.63; p = 0.013), corresponding to a population attributable risk fraction of 12.02%. The haplotypes in a LD block of rs2290149 (C-C-G-C) was also significantly associated with DHF (odds ratio 2.10 (1.53–2.89); permuted p = 0.029).
We identified a SNP (rs2290149) among the tagging SNP set that was significantly associated with early DHF in a Chinese population.
The childhood onset of idiopathic cardiac hypertrophy that occurs without a family history of cardiomyopathy can portend a poor prognosis. Despite morphologic similarities to genetic cardiomyopathies of adulthood, the contribution of genetics to childhood-onset hypertrophy is unknown.
We assessed the family and medical histories of 84 children (63 boys and 21 girls) with idiopathic cardiac hypertrophy diagnosed before 15 years of age (mean [±SD] age, 6.99±6.12 years). We sequenced eight genes: MYH7, MYBPC3, TNNT2, TNNI3, TPM1, MYL3, MYL2, and ACTC. These genes encode sarcomere proteins that, when mutated, cause adult-onset cardiomyopathies. We also sequenced PRKAG2 and LAMP2, which encode metabolic proteins; mutations in these genes can cause early-onset ventricular hypertrophy.
We identified mutations in 25 of 51 affected children without family histories of cardiomyopathy and in 21 of 33 affected children with familial cardiomyopathy. Among 11 of the 25 children with presumed sporadic disease, 4 carried new mutations and 7 inherited the mutations. Mutations occurred predominantly (in >75% of the children) in MYH7 and MYBPC3; significantly more MYBPC3 missense mutations were detected than occur in adult-onset cardiomyopathy (P<0.005). Neither hypertrophic severity nor contractile function correlated with familial or genetic status. Cardiac transplantation and sudden death were more prevalent among mutation-positive than among mutation-negative children; implantable cardioverter–defibrillators were more frequent (P=0.007) in children with family histories that were positive for the mutation.
Genetic causes account for about half of presumed sporadic cases and nearly two thirds of familial cases of childhood-onset hypertrophy. Childhood-onset hypertrophy should prompt genetic analyses and family evaluations.
Cardiomyocyte contraction is regulated by phosphorylation of sarcomeric proteins. Throughout the heart regional and transmural differences may exist in protein phosphorylation. In addition, phosphorylation of sarcomeric proteins is altered in cardiac disease. Heterogeneity in protein phosphorylation may be larger in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) as it may be caused by multiple mutations in genes encoding different sarcomeric proteins. Moreover, HCM is characterized by asymmetric remodelling of the heart. In the present study we assessed if local differences in sarcomeric protein phosphorylation are more evident in primary HCM or DCM than in non-failing donors. Thereto, phosphorylation of the two main target proteins of the beta-adrenergic receptor pathway, troponin I (cTnI) and myosin binding protein C (cMyBP-C) was analysed in different parts in the free left ventricular wall of end–stage failing HCM and DCM patients and donors obtained during transplant surgery. Intra-patient variability in protein phosphorylation within tissue samples of approximately 2 g wet weight was comparable between donor, HCM and DCM samples and could partly be attributed to the precision of the technique. Thus, our data indicate that within the precision of the measurements small, biopsy-sized cardiac tissue samples are representative for the region of the free left ventricular wall from which they were obtained.
Cardiomyopathy; Phosphorylation; Physiology
Marked sarcomere disorganization is a well-documented characteristic of cardiomyocytes in the failing human myocardium. Myosin regulatory light chain 2, ventricular/cardiac muscle isoform (MLC2v), which is involved in the development of human cardiomyopathy, is an important structural protein that affects physiologic cardiac sarcomere formation and heart development. Integrated cDNA expression analysis of failing human myocardia uncovered a novel protein kinase, cardiac-specific myosin light chain kinase (cardiac-MLCK), which acts on MLC2v. Expression levels of cardiac-MLCK were well correlated with the pulmonary arterial pressure of patients with heart failure. In cultured cardiomyocytes, knockdown of cardiac-MLCK by specific siRNAs decreased MLC2v phosphorylation and impaired epinephrine-induced activation of sarcomere reassembly. To further clarify the physiologic roles of cardiac-MLCK in vivo, we cloned the zebrafish ortholog z–cardiac-MLCK. Knockdown of z–cardiac-MLCK expression using morpholino antisense oligonucleotides resulted in dilated cardiac ventricles and immature sarcomere structures. These results suggest a significant role for cardiac-MLCK in cardiogenesis.
RNA trans-splicing has been explored as a therapeutic option for a variety of genetic diseases, but not for cardiac genetic disease. Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is an autosomal-dominant disease, characterized by left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) and diastolic dysfunction. MYBPC3, encoding cardiac myosin-binding protein C (cMyBP-C) is frequently mutated. We evaluated the 5′-trans-splicing strategy in a mouse model of HCM carrying a Mybpc3 mutation. 5′-trans-splicing was induced between two independently transcribed molecules, the mutant endogenous Mypbc3 pre-mRNA and an engineered pre-trans-splicing molecule (PTM) carrying a FLAG-tagged wild-type (WT) Mybpc3 cDNA sequence. PTMs were packaged into adeno-associated virus (AAV) for transduction of cultured cardiac myocytes and the heart in vivo. Full-length repaired Mybpc3 mRNA represented up to 66% of total Mybpc3 transcripts in cardiac myocytes and 0.14% in the heart. Repaired cMyBP-C protein was detected by immunoprecipitation in cells and in vivo and exhibited correct incorporation into the sarcomere in cardiac myocytes. This study provides (i) the first evidence of successful 5′-trans-splicing in vivo and (ii) proof-of-concept of mRNA repair in the most prevalent cardiac genetic disease. Since current therapeutic options for HCM only alleviate symptoms, these findings open new horizons for causal therapy of the severe forms of the disease.
hypertrophic cardiomyopathy; Mybpc3; RNA-based therapy; trans-splicing
The phenotypic variability of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) in patients with identical pathogenic mutations suggests additional modifiers. In view of the regulatory role in cardiac function, blood pressure, and electrolyte homeostasis, polymorphisms in the renin–angiotensin–aldosterone system (RAAS) are candidates for modifying phenotypic expression. In order to investigate whether RAAS polymorphisms modulate HCM phenotype, we selected a large cohort of carriers of one of the three functionally equivalent truncating mutations in the MYBPC3 gene. Family-based association analysis was performed to analyze the effects of five candidate RAAS polymorphisms (ACE, rs4646994; AGTR1, rs5186; CMA, rs1800875; AGT, rs699; CYP11B2, rs1799998) in 368 subjects carrying one of the three mutations in the MYBPC3 gene. Interventricular septum (IVS) thickness and Wigle score were assessed by 2D-echocardiography. SNPs in the RAAS system were analyzed separately and combined as a pro-left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) score for effects on the HCM phenotype. Analyzing the five polymorphisms separately for effects on IVS thickness and Wigle score detected two modest associations. Carriers of the CC genotype in the AGT gene had less pronounced IVS thickness compared with CT and TT genotype carriers. The DD polymorphism in the ACE gene was associated with a high Wigle score (P=0.01). No association was detected between the pro-LVH score and IVS thickness or Wigle score. In conclusion, in contrast to previous studies, in our large study population of HCM patients with functionally equivalent mutations in the MYBPC3 gene we did not find major effects of genetic variation within the genes of the RAAS system on phenotypic expression of HCM.
hypertrophic; cardiomyopathy; renin–angiotensin–aldisterone system; echocardiography
Cardiac hypertrophy, either compensated or decompensated, is associated with cardiomyocyte contractile dysfunction from depressed sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca2+ cycling. Normalization of Ca2+ cycling by ablation or inhibition of the SR inhibitor phospholamban (PLN) has prevented cardiac failure in experimental dilated cardiomyopathy and is a promising therapeutic approach for human heart failure. However, the potential benefits of restoring SR function on primary cardiac hypertrophy, a common antecedent of human heart failure, are unknown. We therefore tested the efficacy of PLN ablation to correct hypertrophy and contractile dysfunction in two well-characterized and highly relevant genetic mouse models of hypertrophy and cardiac failure, Gαq overexpression and human familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy mutant myosin binding protein C (MyBP-CMUT) expression. In both models, PLN ablation normalized the characteristically prolonged cardiomyocyte Ca2+ transients and enhanced unloaded fractional shortening with no change in SR Ca2+ pump content. However, there was no parallel improvement in in vivo cardiac function or hypertrophy in either model. Likewise, the activation of JNK and calcineurin associated with Gαq overexpression was not affected. Thus, PLN ablation normalized contractility in isolated myocytes, but failed to rescue the cardiomyopathic phenotype elicited by activation of the Gαq pathway or MyBP-C mutations.
Accumulating data suggest a link between alterations/deficiencies in cytoskeletal proteins and the progression of cardiomyopathy and heart failure, although the molecular basis for this link remains unclear. Cypher/ZASP is a cytoskeletal protein localized in the sarcomeric Z-line. Mutations in its encoding gene have been identified in patients with isolated non-compaction of the left ventricular myocardium, dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. To explore the role of Cypher in myocardium and to better understand molecular mechanisms by which mutations in cypher cause cardiomyopathy, we utilized a conditional approach to knockout Cypher, specially in either developing or adult myocardium. Cardiac-specific Cypher knockout (CKO) mice developed a severe form of DCM with disrupted cardiomyocyte ultrastructure and decreased cardiac function, which eventually led to death before 23 weeks of age. A similar phenotype was observed in inducible cardiac-specific CKO mice in which Cypher was specifically ablated in adult myocardium. In both cardiac-specific CKO models, ERK and Stat3 signaling pathways were augmented. Finally, we demonstrate the specific binding of Cypher's PDZ domain to the C-terminal region of both calsarcin-1 and myotilin within the Z-line. In conclusion, our studies suggest that (i) Cypher plays a pivotal role in maintaining adult cardiac structure and cardiac function through protein–protein interactions with other Z-line proteins, (ii) myocardial ablation of Cypher results in DCM with premature death and (iii) specific signaling pathways participate in Cypher mutant-mediated dysfunction of the heart, and may in concert facilitate the progression to heart failure.
In Maine Coon (MC) cats the c.91G > C mutation in the gene MYBPC3, coding for cardiac myosin binding protein C (cMyBP-C), is associated with feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (fHCM). The mutation causes a substitution of an alanine for a proline at residue 31 (p.A31P) of cMyBP-C. The pattern of inheritance has been considered autosomal dominant based on a single pedigree. However, larger studies are needed to establish the significance of cats being heterozygous or homozygous for the mutation with respect to echocardiographic indices and the probability of developing fHCM. The objective of the present study was to establish the clinical significance of being homozygous or heterozygous for the p.A31P cMyBP-C mutation in young to middle-aged cats.
The cohort consisted of 332 MC cats, 282 cats < 4 years (85%). All cats were examined by 2-D and M-mode echocardiography. DNA was extracted from blood samples or buccal swabs and screened for the p.A31P cMyBP-C mutation in exon 3 of the gene, using polymerase chain reaction followed by DNA sequencing.
The fHCM prevalence was 6.3% in the cohort. Eighteen cats were homozygous and 89 cats were heterozygous for the mutation. The odds ratio for having fHCM for homozygous cats was 21.6 (95% confidence interval 7.01-66.2) - when the group of equivocal cats was categorized as non-affected. Overall, 50% of the cats that were homozygous for the mutation had fHCM. p.A31P heterozygosity was not associated with a significant odds ratio for fHCM. In cats in the 4 to 6 years of age range a similar, non significant, odds ratio was seen in heterozygous cats. Only two cats over four years were homozygous and both were diagnosed with fHCM.
As there is no significant odds ratio associated with being heterozygous for the pA31P cMyBP-C mutation at this age, the mutation must have a very low penetrance in this group. From our data it would appear that most MC cats that develop fHCM due to the p.A31P mutation prior to the age of approximately 6 years do so because they are homozygous for this mutation.
Background: QT abnormalities have been reported in left ventricular hypertrophy and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
Objective: To determine the relation between left ventricular hypertrophy and increased QT interval in familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
Methods: The QT interval was measured in 206 genotyped adult subjects with familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy from 15 unrelated families carrying mutations in the β myosin heavy chain (β-MHC) gene (five families, n = 68) or the cardiac myosin binding protein C (MyBPC) gene (10 families, n = 138). Subjects were classified as genetically unaffected (controls, n = 112), affected with left ventricular hypertrophy (penetrants, n = 58), or affected without left ventricular hypertrophy (non-penetrants, n = 36).
Results: There was a significant increase in QTmax and QTmin from controls to non-penetrants and penetrants for both the MyBPC group (p ≤ 0.001 and p ≤ 0.001, respectively) and the β-MHC group (p ≤ 0.001 and p ≤ 0.001, respectively). In the MyBPC group, the increase in the QT interval could be explained by increased left ventricular hypertrophy. In the β-MHC group, non-penetrants had a significantly longer QTmax than controls despite the absence of left ventricular hypertrophy, and a similar QT interval to penetrants despite a lesser degree of left ventricular hypertrophy.
Conclusions: In familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, genetically affected subjects without left ventricular hypertrophy may have a prolonged QT duration, which depends not only on the degree of left ventricular hypertrophy, when present, but also on the causative mutation.
myocardial hypertrophy; cardiomyopathy; genetics; QT duration
Familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHC) is a heritable form of cardiac hypertrophy caused by single-point mutations in genes encoding sarcomeric proteins including ventricular myosin regulatory light chain (RLC). FHC often leads to malignant outcomes and sudden cardiac death. The FHC mutations are believed to alter the kinetics of the interaction between actin and myosin resulting in inefficient energy utilization and compromised function of the heart. We studied the effect of the FHC-linked R58Q-RLC mutation on the kinetics of transgenic (Tg)-R58Q cardiac myofibrils. Kinetics was determined from the rate of change of orientation of actin monomers during muscle contraction. Actin monomers change orientation because myosin cross-bridges deliver to it periodic force impulses. An individual impulse (but not time average of impulses) carries the information about the kinetics of actomyosin interaction. To observe individual impulses it was necessary to scale down the experiments to the level of a few molecules. A small population (~4 molecules) was selected by using (deliberately) inefficient fluorescence labeling and observing fluorescent molecules by a confocal microscope. We show that the kinetic rates are significantly smaller in the contracting cardiac myofibrils from Tg-R58Q mice then in control Tg-wild type (WT). We also demonstrate a lower force per cross-section of muscle fiber in Tg-R58Q versus Tg-WT mice. We conclude that the R58Q mutation-induced decrease in cross-bridge kinetics underlines the mechanism by which Tg-R58Q fibers develop low force and thus compromise the ability of the mutated heart to efficiently pump blood.