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Cellular & Molecular Biology Letters

Open Access

Microarray analysis reveals the role of matrix metalloproteinases in mouse experimental autoimmune myocarditis induced by cardiac myosin peptides

  • Qizhu Tang1Email author,
  • Ji Huang1,
  • Haiyan Qian2,
  • Ran Xiong1,
  • Difei Shen1,
  • Hui Wu1,
  • Zhouyan Bian1 and
  • Xiaohong Wei1
Cellular & Molecular Biology LettersAn International Journal200712:3

Received: 26 May 2006

Accepted: 26 September 2006

Published: 19 January 2007


Autoimmune myocarditis develops after the presentation of heart-specific antigens to autoaggressive CD4+ T cells and after inflammation has infiltrated the tissues. To shed light on global changes in the gene expression of autoimmune myocarditis and to gain further insight into the molecular mechanisms underlying the genesis of myocarditis, we conducted a comprehensive microarray analysis of mRNA using an experimental mouse autoimmune myocarditis model via immunization with α-myosin heavy chain-derived peptides. Of over 39,000 transcripts on a high density oligonucleotide microarray, 466 were under-expressed and 241 over-expressed by ≥ 1.5-fold compared with the controls in BALB/C mouse with autoimmune myocarditis. In this paper, we list the top 50 up-regulated genes related to the immune response. These altered genes encode for leukocyte-specific markers and receptors, the histocompatibility complex, cytokines/receptors, chemokines/receptors, adhesion molecules, components of the complement cascade, and signal transduction-related molecules. Interestingly, matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) such as MMP-3 and MMP-9 were up-regulated, as further revealed by the reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry assays. This indicates that MMPs may act as major regulators of the cytokine profile. Together, these findings provide new insight into the molecular events associated with the mechanism of the autoimmune genesis of myocarditis.

Key words

AutoimmuneMatrix metalloproteinasesMicroarrayMyocarditis