Oxidant stress from nitric oxide synthase-3 uncoupling stimulates cardiac pathologic remodeling from chronic pressure load

Eiki Takimoto, Hunter C. Champion, Manxiang Li, Shuxun Ren, E. Rene Rodriguez, Barbara Tavazzi, Giuseppe Lazzarino, Nazareno Paolocci, Kathleen L. Gabrielson, Yibin Wang, David A. Kass

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Cardiac pressure load stimulates hypertrophy, often leading to chamber dilation and dysfunction. ROS contribute to this process. Here we show that uncoupling of nitric oxide synthase-3 (NOS3plays a major role in pressure load-induced myocardial ROS and consequent chamber remodeling/hypertrophy. Chronic transverse aortic constriction (TAC; for 3 and 9 weeks) in control mice induced marked cardiac hypertrophy, dilation, and dysfunction. Mice lacking NOS3 displayed modest and concentric hypertrophy to TAC with preserved function. NOS3-/- TAC hearts developed less fibrosis, myocyte hypertrophy, and fetal gene re-expression (B-natriuretic peptide and α-skeletal actin). ROS, nitrotyrosine, and gelatinase (MMP-2 and MMP-9) zymogen activity markedly increased in control TAC, but not in NOS3-/- TAC, hearts. TAC induced NOS3 uncoupling in the heart, reflected by reduced NOS3 dimer and tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4), increased NOS3-dependent generation of ROS, and lowered Ca2+-dependent NOS activity. Cotreatment with BH4 prevented NOS3 uncoupling and inhibited ROS, resulting in concentric nondilated hypertrophy. Mice given the antioxidant tetrahydroneopterin as a control did not display changes in TAC response. Thus, pressure overload triggers NOS3 uncoupling as a prominent source of myocardial ROS that contribute to dilatory remodeling and cardiac dysfunction. Reversal of this process by BH4 suggests a potential treatment to ameliorate the pathophysiology of chronic pressure-induced hypertrophy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1221-1231
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2005


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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