HDAC1 localizes to the mitochondria of cardiac myocytes and contributes to early cardiac reperfusion injury

J Mol Cell Cardiol. 2018 Jan:114:309-319. doi: 10.1016/j.yjmcc.2017.12.004. Epub 2017 Dec 7.


Rationale: Recent evidence indicates that histone deacetylase enzymes (HDACs) contribute to ischemia reperfusion (I/R) injury, and pan-HDAC inhibitors have been shown to be cardioprotective when administered either before an ischemic insult or during reperfusion. We have shown previously that selective inhibition of class I HDACs provides superior cardioprotection when compared to pan-HDAC inhibition in a pretreatment model, but selective class I HDAC inhibition has not been tested during reperfusion, and specific targets of class I HDACs in I/R injury have not been identified.

Objective: We hypothesized that selective inhibition of class I HDACs with the drug MS-275 (entinostat) during reperfusion would improve recovery from I/R injury in the first hour of reperfusion.

Methods and results: Hearts from male Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to ex vivo I/R injury±MS-275 class I HDAC inhibition during reperfusion alone. MS-275 significantly attenuated I/R injury, as indicated by improved LV function and tissue viability at the end of reperfusion. Unexpectedly, we observed that HDAC1 is present in the mitochondria of cardiac myocytes, but not fibroblasts or endothelial cells. We then designed mitochondria-restricted and mitochondria-excluded HDAC inhibitors, and tested both in our ex vivo I/R model. The selective inhibition of mitochondrial HDAC1 attenuated I/R injury to the same extent as MS-275, whereas the mitochondrial-excluded inhibitor did not. Further assays demonstrated that these effects are attributable to a decrease in SDHA activity and subsequent metabolic ROS production in reperfusion.

Conclusions: We demonstrate for the first time that HDAC1 is present within the mitochondria of cardiac myocytes, and mitochondrial HDAC1 contributes significantly to I/R injury within the first hour of reperfusion.

Keywords: Basic science research; Epigenetics; Histone deacetylases; Ischemia; Ischemia reperfusion injury; Metabolism; Mitochondria; Oxidant stress.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Endothelial Cells / drug effects
  • Endothelial Cells / metabolism
  • Fibroblasts / drug effects
  • Fibroblasts / metabolism
  • Histone Deacetylase 1 / metabolism
  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Mitochondria / drug effects
  • Mitochondria / enzymology*
  • Myocardial Reperfusion Injury / enzymology*
  • Myocardial Reperfusion Injury / pathology
  • Myocardial Reperfusion Injury / physiopathology
  • Myocardium / enzymology
  • Myocardium / pathology
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / enzymology*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / pathology
  • Oxygen Consumption / drug effects
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Succinate Dehydrogenase / metabolism
  • Ventricular Function / drug effects


  • Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Succinate Dehydrogenase
  • Hdac1 protein, rat
  • Histone Deacetylase 1