Navigation Links
A supercharged protein reduces damage from heart attack
Date:3/1/2012

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. Researchers from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill reduced damage from a heart attack by 50 percent by enhancing a protective protein found in mice and humans. The study, in which mice were bred to make a supercharged version of the protein focal adhesion kinase, or FAK, appeared March 1 in the online edition of the journal Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology.

"This study shows that we can enhance existing cell survival pathways to protect heart cells during a heart attack," said Joan Taylor, PhD, associate professor in UNC's department of pathology and laboratory medicine. Taylor added that the findings could lead to new treatment approaches for heart attacks and may have broad implications for scientists seeking to manipulate the body's natural defensive systems.

During a heart attack, oxygen-deprived heart cells emit signals that activate the usually inert protein FAK, like the cry of a damsel in distress awakening her sleeping knight. If the gallant FAK arrives in time, it can save the cell and reduce permanent damage to the heart.

Taylor and her colleagues were intrigued by FAK's protective abilities. "We thought if we could activate FAK to a greater extent, then we could better protect those heart cells," said Taylor. Based on their previous studies that defined the signals induced by FAK in heart cells, they reasoned that expression of FAK set to an "always-on" position would eventually suffer uncontrolled inflammation and heart failure. "Simply having more of a good thing isn't always better," said Taylor. "The dynamics of the protein's activities are important to appropriately transmitting those survival signals."

The researchers then adjusted their formula to create a new protein they called "SuperFAK." To enhance its protective abilities without the harmful side effects, SuperFAK was primed for activationready to rush to the scene at the slightest provocation from stressed heart cellsbut remained under the control of the mice's natural feedback systems that would shut it off when the crisis passed.

Mice with SuperFAK showed a much stronger FAK response during a heart attack than mice with the natural protein, and three days later had about 50 percent less heart damage. Critically, SuperFAK deactivated at the appropriate time, so the eight-week follow-up revealed no detrimental effects.

The findings offer evidence that, rather than simply activating or de-activating key proteins, researchers can benefit from a more nuanced approach that taps into the body's natural feedback loops. "I think folks could use this idea to exploit mutations in other moleculesby thinking about how to modify the protein so that it can be under natural controls," said Taylor. "Negative feedback loops are important because they 'reset' the system."

The findings also may help researchers augment FAK in patients undergoing chemotherapy. Some chemotherapy drugs are known to break down FAK, leaving patients' hearts more vulnerable to damage.


'/>"/>
Contact: Les Lang
llang@med.unc.edu
919-966-9366
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Mapping of protein inhibitors facilitates development of tailor-made anticancer agents
2. A single protein helps the body keep watch over the Epstein-Barr virus
3. CD97 gene expression and function correlate with WT1 protein expression and glioma invasiveness
4. Protein structures give disease clues
5. Protein in the brain could be a key target in controlling Alzheimers
6. Protein That Controls Movement Does the Opposite in Parkinsons
7. UCI team discovers how protein in teardrops annihilates harmful bacteria
8. More Known About Proteins That Cause Autoimmune Diseases
9. Heart Failure, Diabetes Might Be Linked by Protein
10. Researchers discover protein that may represent new target for treating type 1 diabetes
11. Extra Calories, Low Protein Are Culprits in Weight Gain
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
A supercharged protein reduces damage from heart attack
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son ... lash out at his family verbally and physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t ... would use it. He would throw rocks at my other children and say he was ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... makers of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief Products, join The ‘Business for a Fair Minimum ... by 2020 and then adjusting it yearly to increase at the same rate as the ... wage floor does not erode again, and make future increases more predictable. , The company ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Strategic Capital Partners, LLC ... by obtaining investment capital for emerging technology companies. SCP has delivered investment ... resulted in more than a million dollars of capital investment for five companies. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Finally, a bruise cream that really works. Originally designed to reduce ... post-surgical treatment plans of a variety of other procedures including, but not limited to, ... bruising and causes a rapid resolution of bruising and inflammatory changes compared to no ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Dr. Seema Daulat, a native Texan and University of Texas ... as of July 13, 2016. , Dr. Daulat earned her Doctorate of Medicine (MD) ... volunteered at the Agape Clinic serving Dallas’ underprivileged community. , Following medical school, Dr. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Bracket , a leading clinical trial ... clinical outcomes platform, Bracket eCOA (SM) 6.0, at the ... – 30, 2016 in Philadelphia , Pennsylvania.  ... Assessment product of its kind to fully integrate with RTSM, ... eCOA 6.0 is a flexible platform for electronic clinical outcomes ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Revolutionary ... Oticon , industry leaders in advanced audiology ... of Oticon Opn ™, the world,s first internet ... possibilities for IoT devices.      (Photo: ... introduces a number of ,world firsts,: , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Tenn. , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... automating, integrating and transforming the patient payment ... of several innovative new products and services ... of its revenue cycle offerings. These award-winning ... more efficient workflows, remain compliant in an ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: