Abstract P014: Oxidative Stress Mediated Regulation of Antioxidants in Cardiac Progenitor Cells
Cardiac diseases are the leading causes of death throughout the world and transplantation of endogenous myocardial progenitor population with robust cardiovascular lineage differentiation potential is a promising therapeutic strategy. Therefore, in vitro expansion and transplantation of cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs) is currently in early clinical testing as a potential treatment for severe cardiac dysfunction. However, poor survival and engraftment of cells is one of the major limitations of cell transplantation therapy. Oxidative stress is increased in the ischemic myocardium and indirect inferences suggest the vulnerability of CPCs to oxidative stress. In this study, we show that in vitro, resident c-kit positive CPCs isolated from rat myocardium are significantly (p<0.05) resistant to superoxide-induced apoptosis compared to cardiomyocytes as analyzed by the number of sub-G1 population following xanthine/xanthine oxidase treatment. Interestingly, CPCs have two to four fold higher basal SOD1 and SOD2 activities (p<0.01) compared to cardiomyocytes and endothelial cells. Superoxide treatment increased expression of SOD1 (p<0.01), SOD2 (p<0.01), and glutathione peroxidase (p<0.05) mRNAs within 6 h of treatment compared to control cells. Recent studies suggest the involvement of AKT in controlling cell death, survival and also expression of SOD enzymes. Therefore, we investigated the involvement of AKT in CPCs subjected to oxidative stress. Western blot analysis revealed that the amount of phosphorylated AKT increased significantly within 10 minutes of xanthine/xanthine oxidase treatment. In addition, treatment with LY294002 - a PI3 kinase/AKT inhibitor, increased apoptosis in CPCs treated with superoxide. Our studies demonstrate a novel finding in which resident progenitor cells are protected from oxidative injury by containing higher basal levels of antioxidants as compared to myocytes. Moreover, under oxidant challenge antioxidant levels are regulated, possibly in an AKT-dependent manner. Further elucidation of this pathway may lead to novel therapeutic opportunities.
- © 2011 by American Heart Association, Inc.