Immediate effects of a single exercise bout on protein O-GlcNAcylation and chromatin regulation of cardiac hypertrophy

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2013 Jul 1;305(1):H114-23. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.00135.2013. Epub 2013 Apr 26.


Cardiac hypertrophy induced by pathological stimuli is regulated by a complex formed by the repressor element 1-silencing transcription factor (REST) and its corepressor mSin3A. We previously reported that hypertrophic signaling is blunted by O-linked attachment of β-N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAc) to proteins. Regular exercise induces a physiological hypertrophic phenotype in the heart that is associated with decreased O-GlcNAc levels, but a link between O-GlcNAc, the REST complex, and initiation of exercise-induced cardiac hypertrophy is not known. Therefore, mice underwent a single 15- or 30-min bout of moderate- to high-intensity treadmill running, and hearts were harvested immediately and compared with sedentary controls. Cytosolic O-GlcNAc was lower (P < 0.05) following 15 min exercise with no differences in nuclear levels (P > 0.05). There were no differences in cytosolic or nuclear O-GlcNAc levels in hearts after 30 min exercise (P > 0.05). Cellular compartment levels of O-GlcNAc transferase (OGT, the enzyme that removes the O-GlcNAc moiety from proteins), REST, mSin3A, and histone deacetylases (HDACs) 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 were not changed with exercise. Immunoprecipitation revealed O-GlcNAcylation of OGT and HDACs 1, 2, 4, and 5 that was not changed with acute exercise; however, exercised hearts did exhibit lower interactions between OGT and REST (P < 0.05) but not between OGT and mSin3A. These data suggest that hypertrophic signaling in the heart may be initiated by as little as 15 min of exercise via intracellular changes in protein O-GlcNAcylation distribution and reduced interactions between OGT and the REST chromatin repressor.

Keywords: cardiac hypertrophy; chromatin; exercise; histone deacetylase; β-N-acetylglucosamine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetylglucosamine / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cardiomegaly / metabolism*
  • Cardiomegaly / physiopathology
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Chromatin / metabolism*
  • Cytosol / metabolism
  • Glycosylation
  • Heart / physiopathology
  • Histone Deacetylases / metabolism
  • Mice
  • N-Acetylglucosaminyltransferases / metabolism
  • Phenotype
  • Physical Exertion*
  • Repressor Proteins / metabolism
  • Sin3 Histone Deacetylase and Corepressor Complex


  • Chromatin
  • RE1-silencing transcription factor
  • Repressor Proteins
  • SIN3A transcription factor
  • N-Acetylglucosaminyltransferases
  • O-GlcNAc transferase
  • Histone Deacetylases
  • Sin3 Histone Deacetylase and Corepressor Complex
  • Acetylglucosamine