Regulation of connexin 43 by interleukin 1β in adult rat cardiac fibroblasts and effects in an adult rat cardiac myocyte: fibroblast co-culture model

McArthur, L. , Riddell, A. , Chilton, L., Smith, G. L. and Nicklin, S. A. (2020) Regulation of connexin 43 by interleukin 1β in adult rat cardiac fibroblasts and effects in an adult rat cardiac myocyte: fibroblast co-culture model. Heliyon, 6(1), e03031. (doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2019.e03031) (PMID:31909243) (PMCID:PMC6940628)

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Connexin 43 expression (Cx43) is increased in cardiac fibroblasts (CFs) following myocardial infarction. Here, potential mediators responsible for increasing Cx43 expression and effects of differential CF phenotype on cardiac myocyte (CM) function were investigated. Stimulating adult rat CFs with proinflammatory mediators revealed that interleukin 1β (IL-1β) significantly enhanced Cx43 levels through the IL-1β pathway. Additionally, IL-1β reduced mRNA levels of the myofibroblast (MF) markers: (i) connective tissue growth factor (CTGF) and (ii) α smooth muscle actin (αSMA), compared to control CFs. A co-culture adult rat CM:CF model was utilised to examine cell-to-cell interactions. Transfer of calcein from CMs to underlying CFs suggested functional gap junction formation. Functional analysis revealed contraction duration (CD) of CMs was shortened in co-culture with CFs, while treatment of CFs with IL-1β reduced this mechanical effect of co-culture. No effect on action potential rise time or duration of CMs cultured with control or IL-1β-treated CFs was observed. These data demonstrate that stimulating CFs with IL-1β increases Cx43 and reduces MF marker expression, suggesting altered cell phenotype. These changes may underlie the reduced mechanical effects of IL-1β treated CFs on CD of co-cultured CMs and therefore have an implication for our understanding of heterocellular interactions in cardiac disease.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Smith, Professor Godfrey and Chilton, Dr Lisa and McArthur, Dr Lisa and Nicklin, Professor Stuart and Riddell, Dr Alexandra
Authors: McArthur, L., Riddell, A., Chilton, L., Smith, G. L., and Nicklin, S. A.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Cardiovascular & Metabolic Health
Journal Name:Heliyon
ISSN (Online):2405-8440
Published Online:30 December 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 The Author(s)
First Published:First published in Heliyon 6(1): e03031
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons license

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
167019BHF 4 Year PhD ProgrammeAnna DominiczakBritish Heart Foundation (BHF)FS/12/66/30003Institute of Cardiovascular & Medical Sciences