Identification of alpha- and beta-cardiac myosin heavy chain isoforms as major autoantigens in dilated cardiomyopathy.
BACKGROUND Immunization with cardiac myosin induces experimental autoimmune heart disease in genetically predisposed mice. These mice produce heart-specific autoantibodies, some of which are directed against the cardiac myosin isoform.
METHODS AND RESULTS We have reported the presence of circulating heart-specific autoantibodies in 26% of patients with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) using indirect immunofluorescence. To identify the autoantigen(s) recognized by heart-specific autoantibodies in human disease, we tested, by Western blotting, sera from 26 DCM patients, 14 of whom were cardiac antibody-positive and 12 antibody-negative, as well as sera from 12 patients with cardiac failure from ischemic or valvular heart disease and from 13 normal subjects who were cardiac antibody-negative. Crude myofibrillar proteins and myosin preparations extracted from human atrial or ventricular specimens were used as antigens. Sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis was performed. The proteins were electrophoretically transferred to nitrocellulose sheets. The paper strips were incubated in sera from patients or controls at 1:100 dilution; the reaction was revealed with a peroxidase-labeled second antibody against human immunoglobulin. Twelve of the 14 DCM sera (86%) containing heart-specific antibodies reacted with both the alpha- (atrial specific) and beta- (ventricular and slow skeletal) myosin heavy chain isoforms; none of the 13 normal sera (p = 0.0001) and one of the 24 heart failure-negative control sera (4%, p = 0.0001) contained antibodies against myosin heavy chain.
CONCLUSIONS These findings indicate that alpha- and beta-cardiac myosin heavy chain isoforms as in the murine model of autoimmune heart disease are major autoantigens in patients with idiopathic DCM.
- Copyright © 1992 by American Heart Association