Deficiency of cyclase-associated protein 2 promotes arrhythmias associated with connexin43 maldistribution and fibrosis
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Submission date: 2014-08-29
Final revision date: 2014-11-06
Acceptance date: 2014-11-09
Online publication date: 2016-02-02
Publication date: 2016-02-29
Arch Med Sci 2016;12(1):188–198
Introduction: Cyclase-associated protein 2 (CAP2) plays a major role in regulating the actin cytoskeleton. Since inactivation of CAP2 in a mouse model by a gene trap approach (Cap2gt/gt) results in cardiomyopathy and increased mortality, we hypothesized that CAP2 has a major impact on arrhythmias and electrophysiological parameters.
Material and methods: We performed long-term-ECG recordings in transgenic CAP2 deficient mice (C57BL/6) to detect spontaneous arrhythmias. In vivo electrophysiological studies by right heart catheterization and ex vivo epicardial mapping were used to analyze electrophysiological parameters, the inducibility of arrhythmias, and conduction velocities. Expression and distribution of cardiac connexins and the amount of cardiac fibrosis were evaluated.
Results: Spontaneous ventricular arrhythmias could be detected in Cap2gt/gt during the long-term-ECG recording. Cap2gt/gt showed marked conduction delays at atrial and ventricular levels, including a reduced heart rate (421.0 ±40.6 bpm vs. 450.8 ±27.9 bpm; p < 0.01), and prolongations of PQ (46.3 ±4.1 ms vs. 38.6 ±6.5 ms; p < 0.01), QRS (16.2 ±2.6 ms vs. 12.6 ±1.4 ms; p < 0.01), and QTc interval (55.8 ±6.0 ms vs. 45.2 ±3.3 ms; p = 0.02) in comparison to wild type mice. The PQ prolongation was due to an infra-Hisian conduction delay (HV: 9.7 ±2.1 ms vs. 6.5 ±3.1 ms; p = 0.02). The inducibility of ventricular tachycardias during the electrophysiological studies was significantly elevated in the mutant mice (inducible animals: 88% vs. 33%; p = 0.04). Cap2gt/gt showed more abnormal distribution of connexin43 compared to WT (23.0 ±4.7% vs. 2.9 ±0.8%; p < 0.01). Myocardial fibrosis was elevated in Cap2gt/gt hearts (9.1 ±6.7% vs. 5.5 ±3.3%; p < 0.01).
Conclusions: Loss of CAP2 results in marked electrophysiological disturbances including impaired sinus node function, conduction delays, and susceptibility to malignant arrhythmias. Structural changes in Cap2gt/gt are associated with alterations in myocardial connexins and fibrosis.