Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

USC Stem Cell discovery refreshes the heart

08.08.2017

Some people are better than others at recovering from a wounded heart, according to a new USC Stem Cell study published in Nature Genetics.

In the study, first author Michaela Patterson, a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Henry Sucov, and her colleagues focused on a regenerative type of heart muscle cell called a mononuclear diploid cardiomyocyte (MNDCM).


These are heart muscle cells (red) with nuclei (blue). On the far right is a regenerative cell, which only has one nucleus, called a mononuclear diploid cardiomyocyte.

Image by Michaela Patterson/USC

Zebrafish and newborn mammals, including mice and humans, have large numbers of MNDCMs and a relatively robust ability to regenerate heart muscle. However, adult mammals have few MNDCMs and a correspondingly limited capacity for regeneration after an injury such as a heart attack.

Even so, the situation for adult mammals is not uniformly dire: Patterson and her co-authors observed a surprising amount variation in the number of MNDCMs among different strains of adult mice. In some strains, MNDCMs accounted for only 1.9 percent of heart muscle cells. In others, a full 10 percent were MNDCMs. As expected, the higher the percentage of MNDCMs, the better the mice fared in regenerating their heart muscle after injury.

"This was an exciting finding," said Patterson. "It suggests that not all individuals are destined to permanent heart muscle loss after a heart attack, but rather some can naturally recover both heart muscle mass and function. If we can identify the genes that make some individuals better at it than others, then perhaps we can stimulate regeneration across the board."

Using an approach called a genome-wide association study, the researchers indeed identified one of the key genes underlying this variation: Tnni3k. By blocking this gene in mice, the researchers produced higher percentages of MNDCMs and enhanced heart regeneration. In contrast, activating this gene in zebrafish decreased MNDCMs and impaired heart regeneration.

Sucov--senior author and professor of stem cell biology and regenerative medicine, integrative anatomical sciences, and biochemistry and molecular biology--described how this early discovery could be a first step towards a preventive strategy to mitigate heart disease, the leading cause of death in the Western world.

"The activity of this gene, Tnni3k, can be modulated by small molecules, which could be developed into prescription drugs in the future," he said. "These small molecules could change the composition of the heart over time to contain more of these regenerative cells. This could improve the potential for regeneration in adult hearts, as a preventative strategy for those who may be at risk for heart failure."

###

Additional co-authors include Lindsey Barske, Ben Van Handel, Peiheng Gan, Avneesh Sharma, Yukiko Yamaguchi, Hua Shen, Gage Crump, Hooman Allayee and S. Ram Kumar from USC; Ying Huang, Ching-Ling (Ellen) Lien and Takako Makita from Children's Hospital Los Angeles; Christoph D. Rau, Aldons J. Lusis and Matt Denholtz from UCLA; and Shan Parikh and Thomas I. Force from Vanderbilt University.

Ninety percent of this work was supported by $1.08 million of private and non-federal funding from three sources: a Doerr Stem Cell Challenge Grant; an award from USC's Provost Office; and a California Institute for Regenerative Medicine Training Grant (TG2-01161). Ten percent of the project was funded by $120,000 from National Institutes of Health grants (NHLBI NRSA 1F32HL124932, K08HL121191, HL123295, HL114137, and NS083265).

Media Contact

Zen Vuong
zvuong@usc.edu
213-300-1381

 @keckmedusc

http://www.keckmedicine.org/ 

Zen Vuong | EurekAlert!

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Multifunctional Platform for the Delivery of Gene Therapeutics
22.01.2018 | Angewandte Chemie International Edition

nachricht Charge Order and Electron Localization in a Molecule-Based Solid
22.01.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Chemische Physik fester Stoffe

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

Im Focus: Room-temperature multiferroic thin films and their properties

Scientists at Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Tohoku University have developed high-quality GFO epitaxial films and systematically investigated their ferroelectric and ferromagnetic properties. They also demonstrated the room-temperature magnetocapacitance effects of these GFO thin films.

Multiferroic materials show magnetically driven ferroelectricity. They are attracting increasing attention because of their fascinating properties such as...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multifunctional Platform for the Delivery of Gene Therapeutics

22.01.2018 | Life Sciences

The world's most powerful acoustic tractor beam could pave the way for levitating humans

22.01.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Siberian scientists learned how to reduce harmful emissions from HPPs

22.01.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks