mRNA and protein levels of LUM were reduced to 50% in heterozygous LUM (LUM+/-) hearts compared to wild-type (WT) controls. LUM+/- mice were subjected to AB. There was no difference in survival between LUM+/- and WT mice post-AB. Echocardiography revealed no striking differences in cardiac geometry between LUM+/- and WT mice 2, 4, and 6 weeks post-AB, although markers of diastolic dysfunction indicated better function in LUM+/- mice. LUM+/- hearts revealed reduced cardiac fibrosis assessed by histology. In accordance, the expression of collagen I and III, the main fibrillar collagens in the heart, and other ECM molecules central to fibrosis, i.e. including periostin and fibronectin, was reduced in the hearts of LUM+/- compared to WT 6 weeks post-AB. We found no differences in collagen cross-linking between LUM+/- and WT mice post-AB, as assessed by histology and qPCR.
Moderate lack of LUM attenuated cardiac fibrosis and improved diastolic dysfunction following pressure overload in mice, adding to the growing body of evidence suggesting that LUM is a central profibrotic molecule in the heart that could serve as a potential therapeutic target.
© 2020 S. Karger AG, Basel.