Mechanical stretch induces apoptosis regulator TRB3 in cultured cardiomyocytes and volume-overloaded heart

Wen Pin Cheng, Bao Wei Wang, Huey Ming Lo, Kou Gi Shyu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


The expression of TRB3 (tribbles 3), an apoptosis regulated gene, increases during endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. How mechanical stress affects the regulation of TRB3 in cardiomyocytes during apoptosis is not fully understood. An in vivo model of aorta-caval shunt in adult rats demonstrated the increased TRB3 protein expression in the myocardium. The tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) antagonist etanercept reversed the TRB3 protein expression and cardiomyocyte apoptosis induced by AV shunt. An in vitro model of cyclic stretch in neonatal rats was also used to investigate TRB3 expression. We hypothesized that cardiomyocyte apoptosis induced by cyclic stretch is TRB3 dependent. Neonatal rat cardiomyocytes grown on a flexible membrane base were stretched by vacuum to 20% of maximum elongation, at 60 cycles/min. Cyclic stretch significantly increased TRB3 protein and mRNA expression. Addition of c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) inhibitor SP600125, TNF-α antibody and etanercept 30 min before stretch reversed the induction of TRB3 protein induced by stretch. Cyclic stretch induced the DNA-binding activity of growth arrest and DNA damaged inducible gene-153 (GADD153) by electrophoretic mobility shift assay. SP600125, JNK siRNA, TNF-α antibody and etanercept abolished the binding activity induced by stretch. TRB3 promoter activity was enhanced by stretch and TRB3-mut plasmid, SP600125, TNF-α antibody and etanercept attenuated TRB3 promoter activity induced by stretch. Exogenous administration of TNF-α recombinant protein to the non-stretched cardiomyocytes increased TRB3 protein expression similar to that seen after stretch. Cyclic stretch induced cardiomyocyte apoptosis is inhibited by TRB3 siRNA and etanercept. The stretch-induced TRB3 is mediated by TNF-α,JNK and GADD153 pathway. These results indicate that TRB3 plays an important role in stretch-induced cardiomyocyte apoptosis.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0123235
JournalPLoS One
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 21 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Medicine


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