Physiological stressors, such as exercise, can precipitate sudden cardiac death or heart failure progression in patients with arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy (ACM). Yet, whether and to what extent a highly prevalent and more elusive environmental factor, such as psychosocial stress (PSS), can also increase ACM disease progression is unexplored. Here, we first quantified perceived stress levels in patients with ACM and found these levels correlated with the extent of arrhythmias and cardiac dysfunction. To determine whether the observed correlation is due to causation, we inflicted PSS-via the resident-intruder (RI) paradigm-upon Desmoglein-2 mutant mice, a vigorously used mammalian model of ACM. We found that ACM mice succumbed to abnormally high in-trial, PSS mortality. Conversely, no sudden deaths occurred in wildtype (WT) counterparts. Desmoglein-2 mice that survived RI challenge manifested markedly worse cardiac dysfunction and remodeling, namely apoptosis and fibrosis. Furthermore, WT and ACM mice displayed similar behavior at baseline, but Desmoglein-2 mice exhibited heightened anxiety following RI-induced PSS. This outcome correlated with the worsening of cardiac phenotypes. Our mouse model demonstrates that in ACM-like subjects, PSS is incisive enough to deteriorate cardiac structure and function per se, i.e., in the absence of any pre-existing anxious behavior. Hence, PSS may represent a previously underappreciated risk factor in ACM disease penetrance.

Psychosocial Stress Hastens Disease Progression and Sudden Death in Mice with Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy

Zaglia, T;Paolocci, N;
2020

Abstract

Physiological stressors, such as exercise, can precipitate sudden cardiac death or heart failure progression in patients with arrhythmogenic cardiomyopathy (ACM). Yet, whether and to what extent a highly prevalent and more elusive environmental factor, such as psychosocial stress (PSS), can also increase ACM disease progression is unexplored. Here, we first quantified perceived stress levels in patients with ACM and found these levels correlated with the extent of arrhythmias and cardiac dysfunction. To determine whether the observed correlation is due to causation, we inflicted PSS-via the resident-intruder (RI) paradigm-upon Desmoglein-2 mutant mice, a vigorously used mammalian model of ACM. We found that ACM mice succumbed to abnormally high in-trial, PSS mortality. Conversely, no sudden deaths occurred in wildtype (WT) counterparts. Desmoglein-2 mice that survived RI challenge manifested markedly worse cardiac dysfunction and remodeling, namely apoptosis and fibrosis. Furthermore, WT and ACM mice displayed similar behavior at baseline, but Desmoglein-2 mice exhibited heightened anxiety following RI-induced PSS. This outcome correlated with the worsening of cardiac phenotypes. Our mouse model demonstrates that in ACM-like subjects, PSS is incisive enough to deteriorate cardiac structure and function per se, i.e., in the absence of any pre-existing anxious behavior. Hence, PSS may represent a previously underappreciated risk factor in ACM disease penetrance.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11577/3379278
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