Lysozyme: a mediator of myocardial depression and adrenergic dysfunction in septic shock in dogs

Steven N Mink, Hans Jacobs, Deepak Bose, Krika Duke, Zhao Qin Cheng, Gang Liu, R Bruce Light
Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology 2003, 35 (3): 265-75
The objective of the present study was to identify the nature of a filterable cardiodepressant substance (FCS) that contributes to myocardial dysfunction in a canine model of Escherichia coli septic shock. In a previous study, it was found that FCS increased in plasma after 4 h of bacteremia (Am J Physiol 1993;264:H1402) in which FCS was identified by a bioassay that included a right ventricular trabecular (RVT) preparation. In that study, FCS was only partially identified by pore filtration techniques and was found to be a protein of molecular weight between 10 and 30 K. In the present study, FCS was further purified by size exclusion high-pressure liquid chromatography, until a single band was identified on one-dimensional gel electrophoresis. This band was then subjected to tandem mass spectrometry and protein-sequencing techniques and both techniques identified FCS as lysozyme c (Lzm-S), consistent with that originating from the canine spleen. Confirmatory tests showed that purified Lzm-S produced myocardial depression in the RVT preparation at concentrations achieved during sepsis in the in vivo preparation. In addition, Lzm-S inhibited the adrenergic response induced by field stimulation and the beta- agonist isoproterenol in in vitro preparations, these results suggesting that Lzm-S may inhibit the sympathetic response in sepsis. The present findings indicate that Lzm-S originating from disintegrating leukocytes from organs such as the spleen contributes to myocardial dysfunction in this model. The mechanism may relate to its binding or hydrolysis of a cardiac membrane glycoprotein thereby interfering with myocardial excitation-contraction coupling in sepsis.

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