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PLoS One. 2013 Jul 16;8(7):e68154. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0068154. Print 2013.

N-terminal truncated intracellular matrix metalloproteinase-2 induces cardiomyocyte hypertrophy, inflammation and systolic heart failure.

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Department of Medicine, San Francisco Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States of America.


Matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) is increasingly recognized as a major contributor to progressive cardiac injury within the setting of ischemia-reperfusion injury and ischemic ventricular remodeling. A common feature of these conditions is an increase in oxidative stress, a process that engages multiple pro-inflammatory and innate immunity cascades. We recently reported on the identification and characterization of an intracellular isoform of MMP-2 generated by oxidative stress-mediated activation of an alternative promoter located within the first intron of the MMP-2 gene. Transcription from this site generates an N-terminal truncated 65 kDa isoform of MMP-2 (NTT-MMP-2) that lacks the secretory sequence and the inhibitory prodomain region. The NTT-MMP-2 isoform is intracellular, enzymatically active and localizes in part to mitochondria. Expression of the NTT-MMP-2 isoform triggers Nuclear Factor of Activated T-cell (NFAT) and NF-κB signaling with the expression of a highly defined innate immunity transcriptome, including Interleukin-6, MCP-1, IRF-7 and pro-apoptotic transcripts. To determine the functional significance of the NTT-MMP-2 isoform in vivo we generated cardiac-specific NTT-MMP-2 transgenic mice. These mice developed progressive cardiomyocyte and ventricular hypertrophy associated with systolic heart failure. Further, there was evidence for cardiomyocyte apoptosis and myocardial infiltration with mononuclear cells. The NTT-MMP-2 transgenic hearts also demonstrated more severe injury following ex vivo ischemia-reperfusion injury. We conclude that a novel intracellular MMP-2 isoform induced by oxidant stress directly contributes, in the absence of superimposed injury, to cardiomyocyte hypertrophy. inflammation, systolic heart failure and enhanced susceptibility to ischemia-reperfusion injury.

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