Sarcomeres morphology and Z-line arrangement disarray induced by ventricular premature contractions through the Rac2/cofilin pathway

Yu Sheng Lin, Tzu Hao Chang, Wan Chun Ho, Shun Fu Chang, Yung Lung Chen, Shih Tai Chang, Huang Chung Chen, Kuo Li Pan, Mien Cheng Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The most common ventricular premature contractions (VPCs) originate from the right ventricular outflow tract (RVOT), but the molecular mechanisms of altered cytoskeletons of VPC-induced cardiomyopathy remain unexplored. We created a RVOT bigeminy VPC pig model (n = 6 in each group). Echocardiography was performed. The histopathological alternations in the LV myocardium were analyzed, and next generation sequencing (NGS) and functional enrichment analyses were employed to identify the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) responsible for the histopathological alternations. Finally, a cell silencing model was used to confirm the key regulatory gene and pathway. VPC pigs had increased LV diameters in the 6-month follow-up period. A histological study showed more actin cytoskeleton disorganization and actin accumulation over intercalated disc, Z-line arrangement disarray, increased β-catenin expression, and cardiomyocyte enlargement in the LV myocardium of the VPC pigs compared to the control pigs. The NGS study showed actin cytoskeleton signaling, RhoGDI signaling, and signaling by Rho Family GTPases and ILK Signaling presented z-scores with same activation states. The expressions of Rac family small GTPase 2 (Rac2), the p-cofilin/cofilin ratio, and the F-actin/G-actin ratio were downregulated in the VPC group compared to the control group. Moreover, the intensity and number of actin filaments per cardiomyocyte were significantly decreased by Rac2 siRNA in the cell silencing model. Therefore, the Rac2/cofilin pathway was found to play a crucial role in the sarcomere morphology and Z-line arrangement disarray induced by RVOT bigeminy VPCs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number11244
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • Actin cytoskeleton signaling
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Rac2/cofilin
  • Sarcomere
  • Ventricular premature contraction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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