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Bonn, Germany

Preissl S.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Schwaderer M.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Raulf A.,University of Bonn | Hesse M.,University of Bonn | And 7 more authors.
Circulation Research | Year: 2015

Rationale: Epigenetic mechanisms are crucial for cell identity and transcriptional control. The heart consists of different cell types, including cardiac myocytes, endothelial cells, fibroblasts, and others. Therefore, cell type-specific analysis is needed to gain mechanistic insight into the regulation of gene expression in cardiac myocytes. Although cytosolic mRNA represents steady-state levels, nuclear mRNA more closely reflects transcriptional activity. To unravel epigenetic mechanisms of transcriptional control, cell type-specific analysis of nuclear mRNA and epigenetic modifications is crucial. Objective: The aim was to purify cardiac myocyte nuclei from hearts of different species by magnetic-or fluorescent-assisted sorting and to determine the nuclear and cellular RNA expression profiles and epigenetic marks in a cardiac myocyte-specific manner. Methods and Results: Frozen cardiac tissue samples were used to isolate cardiac myocyte nuclei. High sorting purity was confirmed for cardiac myocyte nuclei isolated from mice, rats, and humans. Deep sequencing of nuclear RNA revealed a major fraction of nascent, unspliced RNA in contrast to results obtained from purified cardiac myocytes. Cardiac myocyte nuclear and cellular RNA expression profiles showed differences, especially for metabolic genes. Genome-wide maps of the transcriptional elongation mark H3K36me3 were generated by chromatin-immunoprecipitation. Transcriptome and epigenetic data confirmed the high degree of cardiac myocyte-specificity of our protocol. An integrative analysis of nuclear mRNA and histone mark occurrence indicated a major impact of the chromatin state on transcriptional activity in cardiac myocytes. Conclusions: This study establishes cardiac myocyte-specific sorting of nuclei as a universal method to investigate epigenetic and transcriptional processes in cardiac myocytes of different origins. These data sets provide novel insight into cardiac myocyte transcription. © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc. Source

Raulf A.,University of Bonn | Raulf A.,Lund University | Raulf A.,Van Andel Research Institute | Raulf A.,Pharma Center Bonn | And 32 more authors.
Basic Research in Cardiology | Year: 2015

Even though the mammalian heart has been investigated for many years, there are still uncertainties in the fields of cardiac cell biology and regeneration with regard to exact fractions of cardiomyocytes (CMs) at different developmental stages, their plasticity after cardiac lesion and also their basal turnover rate. A main shortcoming is the accurate identification of CM and the demonstration of CM division. Therefore, an in vivo model taking advantage of a live reporter-based identification of CM nuclei and their cell cycle status is needed. In this technical report, we describe the generation and characterization of embryonic stem cells and transgenic mice expressing a fusion protein of human histone 2B and the red fluorescence protein mCherry under control of the CM specific αMHC promoter. This fluorescence label allows unequivocal identification and quantitation of CM nuclei and nuclearity in isolated cells and native tissue slices. In ventricles of adults, we determined a fraction of <20 % CMs and binucleation of 77–90 %, while in atria a CM fraction of 30 % and a binucleation index of 14 % were found. We combined this transgenic system with the CAG-eGFP-anillin transgene, which identifies cell division and established a novel screening assay for cell cycle-modifying substances in isolated, postnatal CMs. Our transgenic live reporter-based system enables reliable identification of CM nuclei and determination of CM fractions and nuclearity in heart tissue. In combination with CAG-eGFP-anillin-mice, the cell cycle status of CMs can be monitored in detail enabling screening for proliferation-inducing substances in vitro and in vivo. © 2015, The Author(s). Source

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