Combined therapy with cardioprotective cytokine administration and antiapoptotic gene transfer in postinfarction heart failure

Hideshi Okada, Genzou Takemura, Ken-Ichiro Kosai, Akiko Tsujimoto, Masayasu Esaki, Tomoyuki Takahashi, Satoshi Nagano, Hiromitsu Kanamori, Shusaku Miyata, Yiwen Li, Takamasa Ohno, Rumi Maruyama, Atsushi Ogino, Longhu Li, Munehiro Nakagawa, Kenshi Nagashima, Takako Fujiwara, Hisayoshi Fujiwara, Shinya Minatoguchi
American Journal of Physiology. Heart and Circulatory Physiology 2009, 296 (3): H616-26
We hypothesized that therapy, composed of antiapoptotic soluble Fas (sFas) gene transfer, combined with administration of the cardioprotective cytokine granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF), would markedly mitigate cardiac remodeling and dysfunction following myocardial infarction (MI). On the 3rd day after MI induced by ligating the left coronary artery in mice, four different treatments were initiated: saline injection (Group C, n = 26); G-CSF administration (Group G, n = 27); adenoviral transfer of sFas gene (Group F, n = 26); and the latter two together (Group G+F, n = 26). Four weeks post-MI, Group G+F showed better survival than Group C (96 vs. 65%, P < 0.05) and the best cardiac function among the four groups. In Group G, the infarct scar was smaller and less fibrotic, whereas in Group F the scar was thicker, without a reduction in area, and contained abundant myofibroblasts and vascular cells; Group G+F showed both phenotypes. G-CSF exerted a beneficial effect on infarct tissue dynamics through antifibrotic and proliferative effects on granulation tissue; however, it also exerts an adverse proapoptotic effect that leads to thinning of the infarct scar. sFas appeared to offset the latter drawback. In vitro study using cultured myofibroblasts derived from the infarct tissue revealed that G-CSF increased proliferating activity of those cells accompanying activation of Akt and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3, while accelerating Fas-mediated apoptosis with increasing Bax-to-Bcl-2 ratio. The results suggest that combined use of G-CSF administration and sFas gene therapy is a potentially powerful tool against post-MI heart failure.

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