James R Frye

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States

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Publications (2)8.43 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Four isoforms of cardiac troponin T (cTnT), a protein essential for calcium-dependent myocardial force development, are expressed in the human; they differ in charge and length. Their expression is regulated developmentally and is affected by disease states. Human cTnT (hcTnT) isoform effects have been examined in reconstituted myofilaments. In this study, we evaluated the modulatory effects of overexpressing one cTnT isoform on in vitro and in vivo myocardial function. A hcTnT isoform, hcTnT(1), expressed during development and in heart disease but not in the normal adult heart, was expressed in transgenic (TG) mice (1-30% of total cTnT). Maximal active tension measured in skinned myocardium decreased as a function of relative hcTnT(1) expression. The pCa at half-maximal force development, Hill coefficient, and rate of redevelopment of force did not change significantly with hcTnT(1) expression. In vivo maximum rates of rise and fall of left ventricular pressure decreased, and the half-time of isovolumic relaxation increased, with hcTnT(1) expression. Substituting total cTnT charge for hcTnT(1) expression resulted in similar conclusions. Morphometric analysis and electron microscopy revealed no differences between wild-type (non-TG) and TG myocardium. No differences in isoform expression of tropomyosin, myosin heavy chain, essential and regulatory myosin light chains (MLC), TnI, or in posttranslational modifications of mouse cTnT, cTnI, or regulatory MLC were observed. These results support the hypothesis that cTnT isoform amino-terminal differences affect myofilament function and suggest that hcTnT(1) expression levels present during human development and in human heart disease can affect in vivo ventricular function.
    AJP Heart and Circulatory Physiology 03/2005; 288(3):H1147-56. DOI:10.1152/ajpheart.00140.2004 · 3.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We examined the differentiation potential of an adult liver stem cell line (WB F344) in a cardiac microenvironment, ex vivo. WB F344 cells were established from a single cloned nonparenchymal epithelial cell isolated from a normal male adult rat liver. Genetically modified, WB F344 cells that express beta-galactosidase and green fluorescent protein or only beta-galactosidase were co-cultured with dissociated rat or mouse neonatal cardiac cells. After 4 to 14 days, WB F344-derived cardiomyocytes expressed cardiac-specific proteins and exhibited myofibrils, sarcomeres, and a nascent sarcoplasmic reticulum. Further, rhythmically beating WB F344-derived cardiomyocytes displayed calcium transients. Fluorescent recovery after photobleaching demonstrated that WB F344-derived cardiomyocytes were coupled with adjacent neonatal cardiomyocytes and other WB F344-derived cardiomyocytes. Fluorescence in situ hybridization experiments suggested that fusion between WB F344 cells and neonatal mouse cardiomyocytes did not take place. Collectively, these results support the conclusion that these adult-derived liver stem cells respond to signals generated in a cardiac microenvironment ex vivo acquiring a cardiomyocyte phenotype and function. The identification ex vivo of microenvironmental signals that appear to cross germ layer and species specificities should prove valuable in understanding the molecular basis of adult stem cell differentiation and phenotypic plasticity.
    American Journal Of Pathology 08/2004; 165(1):135-45. DOI:10.1016/S0002-9440(10)63282-8 · 4.59 Impact Factor