Titin isoforms are increasingly protected against oxidative modifications in developing rat cardiomyocytes

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During the perinatal adaptation process N2BA titin isoforms are switched for N2B titin isoforms leading to an increase in cardiomyocyte passive tension (Fpassive). Here we attempted to reveal how titin isoform composition and oxidative insults (i.e. sulfhydryl (SH)-group oxidation or carbonylation) influence Fpassive of left ventricular (LV) cardiomyocytes during rat heart development. Moreover, we also examined a hypothetical protective role for titin associated small heat shock proteins (sHSPs), Hsp27 and αB-crystallin in the above processes. Single, permeabilized LV cardiomyocytes of the rat (at various ages following birth) were exposed either to 2,2′-dithiodipyridine (DTDP) to provoke SH-oxidation or Fenton reaction reagents (iron(II), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), ascorbic acid) to induce protein carbonylation of cardiomyocytes in vitro. Thereafter, cardiomyocyte force measurements for Fpassive determinations and Western immunoblot assays were carried out for the semiquantitative determination of oxidized SH-groups or carbonyl-groups of titin isoforms and to monitor sHSPs’ expressions. DTDP or Fenton reagents increased Fpassive in 0- and 7-day-old rats to relatively higher extents than in 21-day-old and adult animals. The degrees of SH-group oxidation or carbonylation declined with cardiomyocyte age to similar extents for both titin isoforms. Moreover, the above characteristics were mirrored by increasing levels of HSP27 and αB-crystallin expressions during cardiomyocyte development. Our data implicate a gradual build-up of a protective mechanism against titin oxidation through the upregulation of HSP27 and αB-crystallin expressions during postnatal cardiomyocyte development.Graphical abstractHighlightsOxidative sensitivity of Fpassive gradually declines with cardiomyocytes age.The susceptibilities of N2BA and N2B titin isoforms for oxidative modifications are similar at a given cardiomyocyte age.The expression levels of myofibrillum associated sHSPs increase gradually in the developing heart.sHSPs may confer protection against oxidative titin modifications.

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