Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Study Pinpoints Protein's Role In Heart Failure Prevention

Date:
January 21, 2005
Source:
University Of North Carolina School Of Medicine
Summary:
Scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine have shown that a protein in cardiac muscle cells may play a crucial role in heart failure prevention.

CHAPEL HILL -- Scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine have shown that a protein in cardiac muscle cells may play a crucial role in heart failure prevention.

The protein is known technically by the unusual acronym MuRF1, or muscle-specific RING finger 1, and helps regulate cardiac cellular molecules involved in abnormal enlargement of the heart. This condition, known medically as cardiac hypertrophy, occurs in 50 percent to 60 percent of people older than age 70 and makes them more prone to developing a potentially fatal type of heart failure.

"People who develop cardiac hypertrophy are prone to diastolic heart failure. Their hearts contract normally but the thickened heart muscle can't keep the blood out of the lungs," said Dr. Cam Patterson, the study's senior author. Patterson is Henry A. Foscue distinguished professor of medicine and cardiology, and professor of pharmacology and cell and developmental biology at UNC. He also directs the Carolina Cardiovascular Biology Center.

In a report published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Dec. 28, Patterson and co-authors said MuRF1 was responsible for signaling other molecules in heart cells to degrade another protein called troponin-1, a key player in heart muscle activity.

"Troponin-1 is a critical component of the cardiac contractile machinery," Patterson said. "It's part of the cardiac muscle cell that makes heart muscle beat."

When heart cells hypertrophy, or become enlarged, troponin-1 and other contractile proteins greatly increase in abundance, Patterson said. "And so one of the critical ways that MuRF1 reverses hypertrophy is by degrading proteins such as troponin-1."

Thus, the action of MuRF1 appears to determine the balance between hypertrophic (enlargement) and anti-hypertrophic signals in heart muscle cells, Patterson added. "This is really a fundamental observation. It has been known for some time that contractile proteins are degraded, but the specific molecules involved have not been defined until now."

Cardiologists consider cardiac hypertrophy as one of the most potent predictors for adverse cardiac outcomes, such as heart failure and arrhythmias, or abnormal heart rhythms. "It's as bad to have cardiac hypertrophy as it is to have had a heart attack," said Patterson. "Unfortunately, we have no specific therapies aimed at this condition. But our findings suggest that new drugs might be developed to reverse hypertrophy by targeting these ubiquitin ligase signaling pathways in cardiac cells."

###

Along with Patterson, co-authors of the report are Carolina Cardiovascular Biology Center postdoctoral researchers Drs. Vishram Kedar, Holly McDonough, Ranjana Arya and Hui-Hua Li; and, from Duke University, Dr. Howard A. Rockman, professor of medicine in the cardiology division. The research was supported by grants from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and the National Institute of General Medicine, components of the National Institutes of Health.

The Carolina Cardiovascular Biology Center, established in 2000, is a multidisciplinary, multidepartmental facility that serves as a focal point for interactions among basic, translational and clinical scientists studying all aspects of cardiovascular disease. Areas of specific interest include atherosclerosis and other vascular diseases, angiogenesis and cardiovascular development, cardiovascular physiology, and diseases of hemostasis.

Cardiovascular diseases represent the most common cause of death and disability nationwide.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of North Carolina School Of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of North Carolina School Of Medicine. "Study Pinpoints Protein's Role In Heart Failure Prevention." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 January 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050111120159.htm>.
University Of North Carolina School Of Medicine. (2005, January 21). Study Pinpoints Protein's Role In Heart Failure Prevention. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050111120159.htm
University Of North Carolina School Of Medicine. "Study Pinpoints Protein's Role In Heart Failure Prevention." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/01/050111120159.htm (accessed September 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How The 'Angelina Jolie Effect' Increased Cancer Screenings

How The 'Angelina Jolie Effect' Increased Cancer Screenings

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) Angelina's Jolie's decision to undergo a preventative mastectomy in 2013 inspired many women to seek early screenings for the disease. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Cost of Ebola

The Cost of Ebola

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 18, 2014) As Sierra Leone prepares for a three-day "lockdown" in its latest bid to stem the spread of Ebola, Ciara Lee looks at the financial implications of fighting the largest ever outbreak of the disease. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins