[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Early-career academic cardiologists currently face unprecedented challenges that threaten a highly valued career path. A team consisting of early career professionals and senior leadership members of American College of Cardiology (ACC) completed this white paper to inform the cardiovascular medicine profession regarding the plight of early career cardiologists and to suggest possible solutions. This paper includes: (1) definition of categories of early career academic cardiologists, (2) general challenges to all categories and specific challenges to each category, (3) obstacles as identified by a survey of current early career members of the ACC, (4) major reasons for the failure of physician-scientists to receive funding from National Institute of Health/National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NIH/NHLBI) career development grants, (5) potential solutions, and (6) a call to action with specific recommendations.
Journal of the American College of Cardiology 06/2014; 63(21). DOI:10.1016/j.jacc.2014.03.011 · 16.50 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Significance:
Heart failure (HF) results from poor heart function and is the leading cause of death in Western society. Abnormalities of Ca(2+) handling at the level of the ventricular myocyte are largely responsible for much of the poor heart function.
Although studies have unraveled numerous mechanisms for the abnormal Ca(2+) handling, investigations over the past decade have indicated that much of the contractile dysfunction and adverse remodeling that occurs in HF involves oxidative stress.
Regrettably, antioxidant therapy has been an immense disappointment in clinical trials. Thus, redox signaling is being reassessed to elucidate why antioxidants failed to treat HF.
A recently identified aspect of redox signaling (specifically the superoxide anion radical) is its interaction with nitric oxide, known as the nitroso-redox balance. There is a large nitroso-redox imbalance with HF, and we suggest that correcting this imbalance may be able to restore myocyte contraction and improve heart function.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This Controversies in Research article discusses the hypothesis that protein kinase A (PKA)-mediated phosphorylation of the Ryanodine Receptor (RyR) at a single serine (RyRS2808) is essential for normal sympathetic regulation of cardiac myocyte contractility and is responsible for the disturbed Ca(2+) regulation that underlies depressed contractility in heart failure. Studies supporting this hypothesis have associated hyperphosphorylation of RyRS2808 and heart failure progression in animals and humans and have shown that a phosphorylation defective RyR mutant mouse (RyRS2808A) does not respond normally to sympathetic agonists and does not exhibit heart failure symptoms after myocardial infarction. Studies to confirm and extend these ideas have failed to support the original data. Experiments from many different laboratories have convincingly shown that PKA-mediated RyRS2808 phosphorylation does not play any significant role in the normal sympathetic regulation of sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ release or cardiac contractility. Hearts and myocytes from RyRS2808A mice have been shown to respond normally to sympathetic agonists, and to increase Ca(2+) influx, Ca(2+) transients, and Ca(2+) efflux. Although the RyR is involved in heart failure-related Ca(2+) disturbances, this results from Ca(2+)-calmodulin kinase II and reactive oxygen species-mediated regulation rather than by RyR2808 phosphorylation. Also, a new study has shown that RyRS2808A mice are not protected from myocardial infarction. Collectively, there is now a clear consensus in the published literature showing that dysregulated RyRs contribute to the altered Ca(2+) regulatory phenotype of the failing heart, but PKA-mediated phosphorylation of RyRS2808 has little or no role in these alterations.
Circulation Research 04/2014; 114(8):1320-7. DOI:10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.114.300569 · 11.02 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Rationale:
Transplantation of stem cells into damaged hearts has had modest success as a treatment for ischemic heart disease. One of the limitations is the poor stem cell survival in the diseased microenvironment. Prolyl hydroxylase domain protein 2 (PHD2) is a cellular oxygen sensor that regulates 2 key transcription factors involved in cell survival and inflammation: hypoxia-inducible factor and nuclear factor-κB.
We studied whether and how PHD2 silencing in human adipose-derived stem cells (ADSCs) enhances their cardioprotective effects after transplantation into infarcted hearts.
Methods and results:
ADSCs were transduced with lentiviral short hairpin RNA against prolyl hydroxylase domain protein 2 (shPHD2) to silence PHD2. ADSCs, with or without shPHD2, were transplanted after myocardial infarction in mice. ADSCs reduced cardiomyocyte apoptosis, fibrosis, and infarct size and improved cardiac function. shPHD2-ADSCs exerted significantly more protection. PHD2 silencing induced greater ADSC survival, which was abolished by short hairpin RNA against hypoxia-inducible factor-1α. Conditioned medium from shPHD2-ADSCs decreased cardiomyocyte apoptosis. Insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) levels were significantly higher in the conditioned medium of shPHD2-ADSCs versus ADSCs, and depletion of IGF-1 attenuated the cardioprotective effects of shPHD2-ADSC-conditioned medium. Nuclear factor-κB activation was induced by shPHD2 to induce IGF-1 secretion via binding to IGF-1 gene promoter.
PHD2 silencing promotes ADSCs survival in infarcted hearts and enhances their paracrine function to protect cardiomyocytes. The prosurvival effect of shPHD2 on ADSCs is hypoxia-inducible factor-1α dependent, and the enhanced paracrine function of shPHD2-ADSCs is associated with nuclear factor-κB-mediated IGF-1 upregulation. PHD2 silencing in stem cells may be a novel strategy for enhancing the effectiveness of stem cell therapy after myocardial infarction.
Circulation Research 05/2013; 113(3). DOI:10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.113.300929 · 11.02 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During sepsis, acute lung injury (ALI) results from activation of innate immune cells and endothelial cells by endotoxins, leading to systemic inflammation through proinflammatory cytokine overproduction, oxidative stress, and intracellular Ca2+ overload. Despite considerable investigation, the underlying molecular mechanism(s) leading to LPS-induced ALI remain elusive. To determine whether stromal interaction molecule 1-dependent (STIM1-dependent) signaling drives endothelial dysfunction in response to LPS, we investigated oxidative and STIM1 signaling of EC-specific Stim1-knockout mice. Here we report that LPS-mediated Ca2+ oscillations are ablated in ECs deficient in Nox2, Stim1, and type II inositol triphosphate receptor (Itpr2). LPS-induced nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) nuclear accumulation was abrogated by either antioxidant supplementation or Ca2+ chelation. Moreover, ECs lacking either Nox2 or Stim1 failed to trigger store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCe) and NFAT nuclear accumulation. LPS-induced vascular permeability changes were reduced in EC-specific Stim1-/- mice, despite elevation of systemic cytokine levels. Additionally, inhibition of STIM1 signaling prevented receptor-interacting protein 3-dependent (RIP3-dependent) EC death. Remarkably, BTP2, a small-molecule calcium release-activated calcium (CRAC) channel blocker administered after insult, halted LPS-induced vascular leakage and pulmonary edema. These results indicate that ROS-driven Ca2+ signaling promotes vascular barrier dysfunction and that the SOCe machinery may provide crucial therapeutic targets to limit sepsis-induced ALI.
The Journal of clinical investigation 01/2013; 123(2). DOI:10.1172/JCI65647 · 13.22 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Ca(2+)-sensing stromal interaction molecule (STIM) proteins are crucial Ca(2+) signal coordinators. Cre-lox technology was used to generate smooth muscle (sm)-targeted STIM1-, STIM2-, and double STIM1/STIM2-knockout (KO) mouse models, which reveal the essential role of STIM proteins in Ca(2+) homeostasis and their crucial role in controlling function, growth, and development of smooth muscle cells (SMCs). Compared to Cre(+/-) littermates, sm-STIM1-KO mice showed high mortality (50% by 30 d) and reduced bodyweight. While sm-STIM2-KO was without detectable phenotype, the STIM1/STIM double-KO was perinatally lethal, revealing an essential role of STIM1 partially rescued by STIM2. Vascular and intestinal smooth muscle tissues from sm-STIM1-KO mice developed abnormally with distended, thinned morphology. While depolarization-induced aortic contraction was unchanged in sm-STIM1-KO mice, α(1)-adrenergic-mediated contraction was 26% reduced, and store-dependent contraction almost eliminated. Neointimal formation induced by carotid artery ligation was suppressed by 54%, and in vitro PDGF-induced proliferation was greatly reduced (79%) in sm-STIM1-KO. Notably, the Ca(2+) store-refilling rate in STIM1-KO SMCs was substantially reduced, and sustained PDGF-induced Ca(2+) entry was abolished. This defective Ca(2+) homeostasis prevents PDGF-induced NFAT activation in both contractile and proliferating SMCs. We conclude that STIM1-regulated Ca(2+) homeostasis is crucial for NFAT-mediated transcriptional control required for induction of SMC proliferation, development, and growth responses to injury.-Mancarella, S., Potireddy, S., Wang, Y., Gao, H., Gandhirajan, K., Autieri, M., Scalia, R., Cheng, Z., Wang, H., Madesh, M., Houser, S. R., Gill, D. L. Targeted STIM deletion impairs calcium homeostasis, NFAT activation, and growth of smooth muscle.
The FASEB Journal 11/2012; 27(3). DOI:10.1096/fj.12-215293 · 5.04 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Hyperhomocysteinemia (HHcy) accelerates atherosclerosis and increases inflammatory monocytes (MC) in peripheral tissues. However, its causative role in atherosclerosis is not well established and its effect on vascular inflammation has not been studied. The underlying mechanism is unknown.
This study examined the causative role of HHcy in atherogenesis and its effect on inflammatory MC differentiation.
We generated a novel HHcy and hyperlipidemia mouse model, in which cystathionine β-synthase (CBS) and low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLr) genes were deficient (Ldlr(-/-) Cbs(-/+)). Severe HHcy (plasma homocysteine (Hcy)=275 μmol/L) was induced by a high methionine diet containing sufficient basal levels of B vitamins. Plasma Hcy levels were lowered to 46 μmol/L from 244 μmol/L by vitamin supplementation, which elevated plasma folate levels. Bone marrow (BM)-derived cells were traced by the transplantation of BM cells from enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) transgenic mice after sublethal irradiation of the recipient. HHcy accelerated atherosclerosis and promoted Ly6C(high) inflammatory MC differentiation of both BM and tissue origins in the aortas and peripheral tissues. It also elevated plasma levels of TNF-α, IL-6, and MCP-1; increased vessel wall MC accumulation; and increased macrophage maturation. Hcy-lowering therapy reversed HHcy-induced lesion formation, plasma cytokine increase, and blood and vessel inflammatory MC (Ly6C(high+middle)) accumulation. Plasma Hcy levels were positively correlated with plasma levels of proinflammatory cytokines. In primary mouse splenocytes, L-Hcy promoted rIFNγ-induced inflammatory MC differentiation, as well as increased TNF-α, IL-6, and superoxide anion production in inflammatory MC subsets. Antioxidants and folic acid reversed L-Hcy-induced inflammatory MC differentiation and oxidative stress in inflammatory MC subsets.
HHcy causes vessel wall inflammatory MC differentiation and macrophage maturation of both BM and tissue origins, leading to atherosclerosis via an oxidative stress-related mechanism.
Circulation Research 05/2012; 111(1):37-49. DOI:10.1161/CIRCRESAHA.112.269472 · 11.02 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Necroptosis represents a form of alternative programmed cell death that is dependent on the kinase RIP1. RIP1-dependent necroptotic death manifests as increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production in mitochondria and is accompanied by loss of ATP biogenesis and eventual dissipation of mitochondrial membrane potential. Here, we show that tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α)-induced necroptosis requires the adaptor proteins FADD and NEMO. FADD was found to mediate formation of the TNF-α-induced pronecrotic RIP1-RIP3 kinase complex, whereas the IκB Kinase (IKK) subunit NEMO appears to function downstream of RIP1-RIP3. Interestingly, loss of RelA potentiated TNF-α-dependent necroptosis, indicating that NEMO regulates necroptosis independently of NF-κB. Using both pharmacologic and genetic approaches, we demonstrate that the overexpression of antioxidants alleviates ROS elevation and necroptosis. Finally, elimination of BAX and BAK or overexpression of Bcl-x(L) protects cells from necroptosis at a later step. These findings provide evidence that mitochondria play an amplifying role in inflammation-induced necroptosis.