The aim of this study is to determine whether Nkx2.5 transfection of transplanted bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) improves the efficacy of treatment of adriamycin-induced heart failure in a rat model.Main methods:
Nkx2.5 was transfected in MSCs by lentiviral vector transduction. The expressions of Nkx2.5 and cardiac specific genes in MSCs and Nkx2.5 transfected mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs-Nkx2.5) were analyzed with quantitative real-time PCR and Western blot in vitro. Heart failure models of rats were induced by adriamycin and were then randomly divided into 3 groups: injected saline, MSCs or MSCs-Nkx2.5 via the femoral vein respectively. Four weeks after injection, the cardiac function, expressions of cardiac specific gene, fibrosis formation and collagen volume fraction in the myocardium as well as the expressions of GATA4 and MEF2 in rats were analyzed with echocardiography, immunohistochemistry, Masson staining, quantitative real-time PCR and Western blot, respectively.Key findings:
Nkx2.5 enhanced cardiac specific gene expressions including α-MHC, TNI, CKMB, connexin-43 in MSCs-Nkx2.5 in vitro. Both MSCs and MSCs-Nkx2.5 improved cardiac function, promoted the differentiation of transplanted MSCs into cardiomyocyte-like cells, decreased fibrosis formation and collagen volume fraction in the myocardium, as well as increased the expressions of GATA4 and MEF2 in adriamycin-induced rat heart failure models. Moreover, the effect was much more remarkable in MSCs-Nkx2.5 than in MSCs group.Significance:
This study has found that Nkx2.5 enhances the efficacy of MSCs transplantation in treatment adriamycin-induced heart failure in rats. Nkx2.5 transfected to transplanted MSCs provides a potential effective approach to heart failure.