Direct proteomic and high-resolution microscopy biopsy analysis identifies distinct ventricular fates in severe aortic stenosis


Brandenburg S, Otto L, Schönberger HL, Jacob CF, Paulke NJ, Beuthner BE, Topci R, Kohl T, Neuenroth L, Kutschka I, Urlaub H, Kück F, Leha A, Friede T, Seidler T, Jacobshagen C, Toischer K, Puls M, Hasenfuß G, Lenz C, Lehnart SE


Journal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology


J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2022 Sep 6:S0022-2828(22)00519-3.


The incidence of aortic valve stenosis (AS), the most common reason for aortic valve replacement (AVR), increases with population ageing. While untreated AS is associated with high mortality, different hemodynamic subtypes range from normal left-ventricular function to severe heart failure. However, the molecular nature underlying four different AS subclasses, suggesting vastly different myocardial fates, is unknown. Here, we used direct proteomic analysis of small left-ventricular biopsies to identify unique protein expression profiles and subtype-specific AS mechanisms. Left-ventricular endomyocardial biopsies were harvested from patients during transcatheter AVR, and inclusion criteria were based on echocardiographic diagnosis of severe AS and guideline-defined AS-subtype classification: 1) normal ejection fraction (EF)/high-gradient; 2) low EF/high-gradient; 3) low EF/low-gradient; and 4) paradoxical low-flow/low-gradient AS. Samples from non-failing donor hearts served as control. We analyzed 25 individual left-ventricular biopsies by data-independent acquisition mass spectrometry (DIA-MS), and 26 biopsies by histomorphology and cardiomyocytes by STimulated Emission Depletion (STED) superresolution microscopy. Notably, DIA-MS reliably detected 2273 proteins throughout each individual left-ventricular biopsy, of which 160 proteins showed significant abundance changes between AS-subtype and non-failing samples including the cardiac ryanodine receptor (RyR2). Hierarchical clustering segregated unique proteotypes that identified three hemodynamic AS-subtypes. Additionally, distinct proteotypes were linked with AS-subtype specific differences in cardiomyocyte hypertrophy. Furthermore, superresolution microscopy of immunolabeled biopsy sections showed subcellular RyR2-cluster fragmentation and disruption of the functionally important association with transverse tubules, which occurred specifically in patients with systolic dysfunction and may hence contribute to depressed left-ventricular function in AS.


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