Abstract 129: Suppressor of Cytokine Signaling 1 in Dendritic Cells Inhibits Myocardial Inflammation in Experimental Autoimmune Myocarditis
Introduction: Autoimmunity is considered to play an important role in the development of myocarditis and dilated cardiomyopathy. Recent reports have indicated that a subgroup of myocarditis patients may benefit from immune-targeted therapies. Suppressor of cytokine signaling1 (SOCS1) is an intracellular, cytokine-inducible protein that regulates the responses of immune cells to cytokines. We therefore hypothesized that overexpression of SOCS1 may inhibit the inflammation of myocarditis and cardiomyopathy.
Methods and Results: Myocarditis was induced by subcutaneous immunization with cardiac specific peptides derived from α-myosin heavy chain in BALB/c mice on days 0 and 7. Plasmid DNA encoding SOCS1 (pSOCS1) was injected intraperitoneally into mice on days 0, 5 and 10. pSOCS1 treatment significantly decreased heart-to-body weight ratios and the number of infiltrating cells in the heart. Echocardiography showed preserved contractile function in pSOCS1-treated mice. Although autoimmune myocarditis is a CD4+ T cell-mediated disease, pSOCS1 treatment does not have a direct suppressive effect on autoreactive T-cell activation. The introduced pSOCS1 suppressed proinflammatory cytokine production and STAT1 phosphorylation in dendritic cells (DCs). In addition, the proliferative responses of autoreactive CD4+ T cells co-cultured with DCs from pSOCS1-treated mice were much weaker than those of cells cultured with DCs from control plasmid-injected mice. These results suggested that the inoculated pSOCS1 may have been transfected into DCs and impaired DC function in vivo.
Conclusion: The administration of pSOCS1 protected mice from the development of experimental autoimmune myocarditis, which was mediated by the inhibition of DC function that in turn reduced the activation of autoreactive CD4+ T cells.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.