Emerging roles of A-kinase anchoring proteins in cardiovascular pathophysiology

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2016 Jul;1863(7 Pt B):1926-36. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamcr.2015.11.024. Epub 2015 Nov 28.


Heart and blood vessels ensure adequate perfusion of peripheral organs with blood and nutrients. Alteration of the homeostatic functions of the cardiovascular system can cause hypertension, atherosclerosis, and coronary artery disease leading to heart injury and failure. A-kinase anchoring proteins (AKAPs) constitute a family of scaffolding proteins that are crucially involved in modulating the function of the cardiovascular system both under physiological and pathological conditions. AKAPs assemble multifunctional signaling complexes that ensure correct targeting of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) as well as other signaling enzymes to precise subcellular compartments. This allows local regulation of specific effector proteins that control the function of vascular and cardiac cells. This review will focus on recent advances illustrating the role of AKAPs in cardiovascular pathophysiology. The accent will be mainly placed on the molecular events linked to the control of vascular integrity and blood pressure as well as on the cardiac remodeling process associated with heart failure. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Cardiomyocyte Biology: Integration of Developmental and Environmental Cues in the Heart edited by Marcus Schaub and Hughes Abriel.

Keywords: A kinase anchoring protein (AKAP); Cardiac remodeling; Cardiomyocyte; Protein kinase A (PKA); Signaling; Vascular smooth muscle cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • A Kinase Anchor Proteins / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Blood Pressure
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Heart Failure / enzymology*
  • Heart Failure / pathology
  • Heart Failure / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Muscle, Smooth, Vascular / enzymology*
  • Muscle, Smooth, Vascular / pathology
  • Muscle, Smooth, Vascular / physiopathology
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / enzymology*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / pathology
  • Myocytes, Smooth Muscle / enzymology*
  • Myocytes, Smooth Muscle / pathology
  • Signal Transduction
  • Vascular Remodeling
  • Ventricular Remodeling


  • A Kinase Anchor Proteins
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases