DOI: 10.1161/circ.148.suppl_1.18021 ISSN: 0009-7322

Abstract 18021: Environmental Circadian Desynchronization and Metabolic Stress Drive Heart Failure With Preserved Ejection Fraction (HFpEF)

Varun Mandi, Jeongkyung Lee, Rajaganapathi Jagannathan, Ping Yang, Vinny Negi, FENG LI, Yijen L Wu, Dhivyaa Rajasundaram, Vijay Yechoor, Mousumi Moulik
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Background: The pathogenic mechanisms underlying HFpEF (Heart Failure with preserved Ejection Fraction), which accounts for 50% of heart failure, remain unclear. Elevated endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress has been implicated in HFpEF. Circadian disruption (CD) as seen in shift workers has been associated with an excess risk for chronic age-related disorders, including cardiovascular disease. Currently, the role of CD in HFpEF is not known.

Hypothesis: The dual 'hits' of chronic metabolic stress and circadian disruption lead to increased ER stress, impaired unfolded protein response (UPR), and adverse cardiac remodeling resulting in HFpEF.

Methods: High fat diet (HFD) fed C57BL6 male mice were subjected to chronic shifted light-dark (LD) cycles mimicking shift work (Shift), with appropriate controls. Metabolic (glucose tolerance, insulin sensitivity, body fat) and cardiac function parameters (systolic and diastolic function by ECHO, MRI, and terminal PV-loops) were collected. Cardiac tissue was analyzed using qPCR, western blot, bulk RNA-seq, spatial transcriptomics, proteomics, and histology. For in vitro studies, Bmal1 was deleted in H9C2 cells using CRISPR/Cas9.

Results: ‘HS’ mice (HFD & Shift) had the most insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, and obesity, compared to ‘HR’ (HFD & Regular LD), ‘CS’ (Normal Chow & Shift) and ‘CR’ (Chow and Regular LD) groups. ECHO and MRI revealed preserved EF in all groups, with diastolic impairment in both HS and HR (↑MV E/E’, ↓MV E/A, and ↓LV diastolic strain) groups, HS>HR. Only ‘HS’ mice showed ↓cardiac compliance (↑β in EDPVR) and ↑lung weight suggestive of HF consistent with HFpEF. Gene and protein expression revealed dysregulation of numerous UPR pathway molecules (Atf6, Chop, Bip, Perk, and others) in HS mice. Mechanistically, Bmal1 deletion in CMs resulted in similar dysregulation of UPR genes. HS mouse hearts showed increased fibrosis, and spatial transcriptomics displayed enrichment of ATF4-related pathways in CMs and activated fibroblasts.

Conclusions: The dual hit of metabolic and circadian stress induces HFpEF, which cannot be recapitulated by only one stressor. Our results identify previously unrecognized roles of UPR perturbation in driving HFpEF under circadian and metabolic stress.

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