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Virchows Archiv

, Volume 441, Issue 5, pp 481–489 | Cite as

The arylhydrocarbon receptor (AhR), but not the AhR-nuclear translocator (ARNT), is increased in hearts of patients with cardiomyopathy

  • Mohammad Mehrabi
  • Georg E. Steiner
  • Christoph Dellinger
  • Anne Kofler
  • Katharina Schaufler
  • Forouzan Tamaddon
  • Karina Plesch
  • Cem Ekmekcioglu
  • Gerald Maurer
  • Helmut D. Glogar
  • Theresia Thalhammer
Original Article

Abstract.

The objective of this study was to investigate the expression of the arylhydrocarbon receptor (AhR) and its partner AhR-nuclear translocator (ARNT) in left ventricle specimens from explanted hearts from patients with cardiomyopathy (CMP). Explanted hearts from 16 patients with ischemic (n=9, age 63±12 years) and dilative (n=7, age 54±12 years) CMP, undergoing heart transplantation were examined. Healthy donor hearts from five accident victims served as controls. As these donors were of younger age (32±11 years), additionally, donor hearts from three older accident victims (age 48±15 years) without clinical symptoms but with signs of ventricular hyperthrophy (n=1) or atherosclerotic lesions (n=2) were included ("pathological controls"). Expression of AhR and ARNT was analyzed using semi-quantitative immunohistochemistry, and in selected samples, Western blot- and reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction analysis were performed to confirm AhR and ARNT expression. Immunohistological analysis revealed weak to intermediate staining of anti-AhR in control, but weak to intense staining in CMP- and "pathologic control" specimens, indicating significantly increased AhR levels in the diseased heart. Moreover, in CMP specimens, the percentage of AhR-positive cells was strongly increased. Higher anti-AhR staining was also seen in two atherosclerotic "pathologic control" specimens. In all groups, the intensity of anti-ARNT staining was more pronounced than AhR staining, but significant differences or any age-related alterations were not observed. In conclusion, the increased cellular content of AhR in left ventricular specimens from CMP patients suggests a role for AhR in heart disease.

Cardiomyopathy Ventricular function Receptors AhR 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mohammad Mehrabi
    • 1
  • Georg E. Steiner
    • 2
  • Christoph Dellinger
    • 5
  • Anne Kofler
    • 2
  • Katharina Schaufler
    • 4
  • Forouzan Tamaddon
    • 1
  • Karina Plesch
    • 1
  • Cem Ekmekcioglu
    • 3
  • Gerald Maurer
    • 1
  • Helmut D. Glogar
    • 1
  • Theresia Thalhammer
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Cardiology, University of Vienna,Waehringer Guertel 18–20, Postfach 120, 1097 Vienna, Austria
  2. 2.Department of Urology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  3. 3.Department of Physiology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  4. 4.Department of Pathophysiology, University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria
  5. 5.Department of Pathology, Wilhelminen Hospital, Vienna, Austria

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