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Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2012 May;237(5):593-607. doi: 10.1258/ebm.2012.011137. Epub 2012 May 22.

Y-box binding protein-1 implicated in translational control of fetal myocardial gene expression after cardiac transplant.

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Department of Physiology & Cell Biology, Dorothy M. Davis Heart & Lung Research Institute, College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA.


Peri-transplant surgical trauma and ischemia/reperfusion injury in accepted murine heterotopic heart grafts has been associated with myofibroblast differentiation, cardiac fibrosis and biomechanical-stress activation of the fetal myocardial smooth muscle α-actin (SMαA) gene. The wound-healing agonists, transforming growth factor β1 and thrombin, are known to coordinate SMαA mRNA transcription and translation in activated myofibroblasts by altering the subcellular localization and mRNA-binding affinity of the Y-box binding protein-1 (YB-1) cold-shock domain (CSD) protein that governs a variety of cellular responses to metabolic stress. YB-1 accumulated in polyribosome-enriched regions of the sarcoplasm proximal to cardiac intercalated discs in accepted heart grafts. YB-1 binding to a purine-rich motif in exon 3 of SMαA mRNA that regulates translational efficiency increased substantially in perfusion-isolated, rod-shaped adult rat cardiomyocytes during phenotypic de-differentiation in the presence of serum-derived growth factors. Cardiomyocyte de-differentiation was accompanied by the loss of a 60 kDa YB-1 variant that was highly expressed in both adult myocardium and freshly isolated myocytes and replacement with the 50 kDa form of YB-1 (p50) typically expressed in myofibroblasts that demonstrated sequence-specific interaction with SMαA mRNA. Accumulation of p50 YB-1 in reprogrammed, de-differentiated myocytes was associated with a 10-fold increase in SMαA protein expression. Endomyocardial biopsies collected from patients up to 14 years after heart transplant showed variable yet coordinately elevated expression of SMαA and p50 YB-1 protein and demonstrable p50 YB-1:SMαA mRNA interaction. The p60 YB-1 variant in human heart graft samples, but neither mouse p60 nor mouse or human p50, reacted with an antibody specific for the phosphoserine 102 modification in the YB-1 CSD. Modulation of YB-1 subcellular compartmentalization and mRNA-binding activity may be linked with reprogramming of contractile protein gene expression in ventricular cardiomyocytes that could contribute to maladaptive remodeling in accepted, long-term heart grafts.

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