J Cell Mol Med. 2021 Nov 29. doi: 10.1111/jcmm.17081. Online ahead of print.
Persistent cardiac Ca2+ /calmodulin-dependent Kinase II (CaMKII) activation was considered to promote heart failure (HF) development, some studies believed that CaMKII was a target for therapy of HF. However, CaMKII was an important mediator for the ischaemia-induced coronary angiogenesis, and new evidence confirmed that angiogenesis inhibited cardiac remodelling and improved heart function, and some conditions which impaired angiogenesis aggravated ventricular remodelling. This study aimed to investigate the roles and the underlying mechanisms of CaMKII inhibitor in cardiac remodelling. First, we induced cardiac remodelling rat model by ISO, pre-treated by CaMKII inhibitor KN-93, evaluated heart function by echocardiography measurements, and performed HE staining, Masson staining, Tunel staining, Western blot and RT-PCR to test cardiac remodelling and myocardial microvessel density; we also observed ultrastructure of cardiac tissue with transmission electron microscope. Second, we cultured HUVECs, pre-treated by ISO and KN-93, detected cell proliferation, migration, tubule formation and apoptosis, and carried out Western blot to determine the expression of NOX2, NOX4, VEGF, VEGFR2, p-VEGFR2 and STAT3; mtROS level was also measured. In vivo, we found KN-93 severely reduced myocardial microvessel density, caused apoptosis of vascular endothelial cells, enhanced cardiac hypertrophy, myocardial apoptosis, collagen deposition, aggravated the deterioration of myocardial ultrastructure and heart function. In vitro, KN-93 inhibited HUVECs proliferation, migration and tubule formation, and promoted apoptosis of HUVECs. The expression of NOX2, NOX4, p-VEGFR2 and STAT3 were down-regulated by KN-93; mtROS level was severely reduced by KN-93. We concluded that KN-93 impaired angiogenesis and aggravated cardiac remodelling and heart failure via inhibiting NOX2/mtROS/p-VEGFR2 and STAT3 pathways.