Translational investigation of electrophysiology in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

Abstract

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) patients are at increased risk of ventricular arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death, which can occur even in the absence of structural changes of the heart. HCM mouse models suggest mutations in myofilament components to affect Ca2+ homeostasis and thereby favor arrhythmia development. Additionally, some of them show indications of pro-arrhythmic changes in cardiac electrophysiology. In this study, we explored arrhythmia mechanisms in mice carrying a HCM mutation in Mybpc3 (Mybpc3-KI) and tested the translatability of our findings in human engineered heart tissues (EHTs) derived from CRISPR/Cas9-generated homozygous MYBPC3 mutant (MYBPC3hom) in induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) and to left ventricular septum samples obtained from HCM patients. We observed higher arrhythmia susceptibility in contractility measurements of field-stimulated intact cardiomyocytes and ventricular muscle strips as well as in electromyogram recordings of Langendorff-perfused hearts from adult Mybpc3-KI mice than in wild-type (WT) controls. The latter only occurred in homozygous (Hom-KI) but not in heterozygous (Het-KI) mouse hearts. Both Het- and Hom-KI are known to display pro-arrhythmic increased Ca2+ myofilament sensitivity as a direct consequence of the mutation. In the electrophysiological characterization of the model, we observed smaller repolarizing K+ currents in single cell patch clamp, longer ventricular action potentials in sharp microelectrode recordings and longer ventricular refractory periods in Langendorff-perfused hearts in Hom-KI, but not Het-KI. Interestingly, reduced K+ channel subunit transcript levels and prolonged action potentials were already detectable in newborn, pre-hypertrophic Hom-KI mice. Human iPSC-derived MYBPC3hom EHTs, which genetically mimicked the Hom-KI mice, did exhibit lower mutant mRNA and protein levels, lower force, beating frequency and relaxation time, but no significant alteration of the force-Ca2+ relation in skinned EHTs. Furthermore, MYBPC3hom EHTs did show higher spontaneous arrhythmic behavior, whereas action potentials measured by sharp microelectrode did not differ to isogenic controls. Action potentials measured in septal myectomy samples did not differ between patients with HCM and patients with aortic stenosis, except for the only sample with a MYBPC3 mutation. The data demonstrate that increased myofilament Ca2+ sensitivity is not sufficient to induce arrhythmias in the Mybpc3-KI mouse model and suggest that reduced K+ currents can be a pro-arrhythmic trigger in Hom-KI mice, probably already in early disease stages. However, neither data from EHTs nor from left ventricular samples indicate relevant reduction of K+ currents in human HCM. Therefore, our study highlights the species difference between mouse and human and emphasizes the importance of research in human samples and human-like models.

Bibliografische Daten

OriginalspracheEnglisch
ISSN0022-2828
DOIs
StatusVeröffentlicht - 08.2021
PubMed 33957110