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Cell. 2006 May 5;125(3):453-66.

The transcriptional coactivator CAMTA2 stimulates cardiac growth by opposing class II histone deacetylases.

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Department of Molecular Biology, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, 6000 Harry Hines Blvd., Dallas, TX 75390, USA.


Postnatal cardiac myocytes respond to diverse signals by hypertrophic growth and activation of a fetal gene program. In an effort to discover regulators of cardiac hypertrophy, we performed a eukaryotic expression screen for activators of the atrial natriuretic factor (ANF) gene, a cardiac-specific marker of hypertrophic signaling. We discovered that a family of transcriptional coactivators, called CAMTAs, promotes cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and activates the ANF gene, at least in part, by associating with the cardiac homeodomain protein Nkx2-5. The transcriptional activity of CAMTAs is governed by association with class II histone deacetylases (HDACs), which negatively regulate cardiac growth. Mice homozygous for a mutation in a CAMTA gene are defective in cardiac growth in response to pressure overload and neurohumoral signaling, whereas mice lacking HDAC5, a class II HDAC, are sensitized to the prohypertrophic actions of CAMTA. These findings reveal a transcriptional regulatory mechanism that modulates cardiac growth and gene expression by linking hypertrophic signals to the cardiac genome.

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