Dexrazoxane protects against doxorubicin-induced cardiomyopathy: upregulation of Akt and Erk phosphorylation in a rat model
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Dexrazoxane (DZR), a clinically approved cation chelator, is effective in reducing doxorubicin (DOX)-induced heart damage, yet its cardioprotective mechanism is not fully understood. We aimed to investigate the effects of DZR on the activation of Akt and Erk 1/2 signals in a rat model of DOX-induced cardiomyopathy.
Male Sprague–Dawley rats received weekly DOX injection (2.5 mg/kg) for 6 weeks, with or without DZR pretreatment at a dose ratio of 20:1. The ventricular functions of these animals were monitored at week 6, 9 and 11 by echocardiography. At week 11, their heart morphology was studied by light and electron microscopy. Phosphorylation of Akt and Erk in heart tissues was measured by Western blot analysis.
DOX caused myocardial damage with compromised left ventricular function, increased myocardium injury and reduced phosphorylation of Akt and Erk. DZR exerted a significant cardioprotective effect in terms of improved fractional shortening, cardiac output and cardiomyopathy score at one or more time points. We also provided the first evidence that dexarazoxane-treated animals had increased levels of Akt and Erk activation, whilst total Akt and Erk remained unchanged.
Our results showed that the cardioprotective effect of dexarazoxane has been sustained beyond the treatment period. The data also suggested that activation of the Akt and Erk signaling pathways was regulated in the course of DOX-induced cardiomyopathy and protection by DZR.
KeywordsDexrazoxane Doxorubicin Cardioprotection Akt Erk1/2
This research project was support by Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences Grant, The Chinese University of Hong Kong (Project ID: 6901985), and Earmarked Grant, Research Grants Council, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (Project No. CUHK4521/05M).
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