ABSTRACT: Naturally occurring mutations in cardiac troponin T (cTnT) result in a clinical subset of familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. To determine the mechanistic links between thin-filament mutations and cardiovascular phenotypes, we have generated and characterized several transgenic mouse models carrying cTnT mutations. We address two central questions regarding the previously observed changes in myocellular mechanics and Ca(2+) homeostasis: 1) are they characteristic of all severe cTnT mutations, and 2) are they primary (early) or secondary (late) components of the myocellular response? Adult left ventricular myocytes were isolated from 2- and 6-mo-old transgenic mice carrying missense mutations at residue 92, flanking the TNT1 NH(2)-terminal tail domain. Results from R92L and R92W myocytes showed mutation-specific alterations in contraction and relaxation indexes at 2 mo with improvements by 6 mo. Alterations in Ca(2+) kinetics remained consistent with mechanical data in which R92L and R92W exhibited severe diastolic impairments at the early time point that improved with increasing age. A normal regulation of Ca(2+) kinetics in the context of an altered baseline cTnI phosphorylation suggested a pathogenic mechanism at the myofilament level taking precedence for R92L. The quantitation of Ca(2+)-handling proteins in R92W mice revealed a synergistic compensatory mechanism involving an increased Ser16 and Thr17 phosphorylation of phospholamban, contributing to the temporal onset of improved cellular mechanics and Ca(2+) homeostasis. Therefore, independent cTnT mutations in the TNT1 domain result in primary mutation-specific effects and a differential temporal onset of altered myocellular mechanics, Ca(2+) kinetics, and Ca(2+) homeostasis, complex mechanisms which may contribute to the clinical variability in cTnT-related familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy mutations.
AJP Heart and Circulatory Physiology 07/2009; 297(2):H614-26. · 3.71 Impact Factor