Abstract 380: Resident Cardiac Fibroblasts Give Rise to Periostin+ Myofibroblasts Which are the Primary Mediators of Cardiac Fibrosis
Resident cardiac fibroblasts (CFs) are potential therapeutic targets in treating or preventing heart failure since they play a critical role in cardiac remodeling and fibrosis after injury or with prolonged stress stimulation. Heterogeneity among activated fibroblasts within the heart has been noted by a number of previous studies in the literature. In addition to resident CFs, many cell types such as endothelial, perivascular and bone marrow cells have been suggested to go through a mesenchymal transition and acquire a myofibroblast-like phenotype during disease conditions. Hence, the cellular origin of the activated myofibroblast within the heart remains uncertain, in part because of a lack in reliable genetic strategies to define cellular lineage. Recent studies suggest that epicardial precursor cells expressing transcription factor 21 (Tcf21) give rise to resident CFs in the adult heart. In addition, the secreted matricellular protein periostin (Postn), appears to be expressed only within activated fibroblasts (myofibroblasts) within the heart. Here we used Tcf21-MerCreMer (Tcf21MCM) knockin mice and Postn-MerCreMer (PostnMCM) knock-in (KI) mice to lineage trace resident CFs and myofibroblasts with injury stimulation. To account for other potential cellular lineages giving rise to fibroblasts in the heart we also performed lineage tracing with the mouse genetic models including LysM-Cre (macrophage), ckit-Cre (bone marrow), Tie2CreERT2 (endothelial) and Myh11-CreERT2 (smooth muscle) in conjunction ROSA26 (R26) locus based loxP inactivated reporter alleles. Results of this study indicate that the Tcf21+ resident CFs are the predominant source for the activated periostin+ MFs which are the key mediators of extracellular matrix (ECM) production and ECM stability in heart whereas the contribution of other lineages to MFs are minimal. Additionally, we have performed single cell RNA sequencing on TCF21+ and Postn+ isolated CFs pre and post myocardial injury in order to define the fibroblast lineage itself at greater molecular depth.
Author Disclosures: O. Kanisicak: None. H. Khalil: None. J. Karch: None. M. Brody: None. S. Lin: None. M. Sargent: None. J.D. Molkentin: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.