Myocardial Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) inhibition improves cardiac function following myocardial infarction (MI), but the CaMKII-dependent pathways that participate in myocardial stress responses are incompletely understood. To address this issue, we sought to determine the transcriptional consequences of myocardial CaMKII inhibition after MI. We performed gene expression profiling in mouse hearts with cardiomyocyte-delimited transgenic expression of either a CaMKII inhibitory peptide (AC3-I) or a scrambled control peptide (AC3-C) following MI. Of the 8,600 mRNAs examined, 156 were substantially modulated by MI, and nearly half of these showed markedly altered responses to MI with CaMKII inhibition. CaMKII inhibition substantially reduced the MI-triggered upregulation of a constellation of proinflammatory genes. We studied 1 of these proinflammatory genes, complement factor B (Cfb), in detail, because complement proteins secreted by cells other than cardiomyocytes can induce sarcolemmal injury during MI. CFB protein expression in cardiomyocytes was triggered by CaMKII activation of the NF-κB pathway during both MI and exposure to bacterial endotoxin. CaMKII inhibition suppressed NF-κB activity in vitro and in vivo and reduced Cfb expression and sarcolemmal injury. The Cfb-/- mice were partially protected from the adverse consequences of MI. Our findings demonstrate what we believe is a novel target for CaMKII in myocardial injury and suggest that CaMKII is broadly important for the genetic effects of MI in cardiomyocytes.
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