We have reported that mast cell chymase, an angiotensin II-generating enzyme, is important in cardiovascular tissues. Recently, we developed a new chymase-specific inhibitory RNA aptamer, HA28, and we evaluated the effects of HA28 on cardiac function and the mortality rate after myocardial infarction. Echocardiographic parameters, such as the left ventricular ejection fraction, fractional shortening, and the ratio of early to late ventricular filling velocities, were significantly improved by treatment with HA28 after myocardial infarction. The mortality rate was significantly reduced in the HA28-treated group. Cardiac chymase activity and chymase gene expression were significantly higher in the vehicle-treated myocardial infarction group, and these were markedly suppressed in the HA28-treated myocardial infarction group. The present study provides the first evidence that a single-stranded RNA aptamer that is a chymase-specific inhibitor is very effective in the treatment of acute heart failure caused by myocardial infarction. Chymase may be a new therapeutic target in post-myocardial infarction pathophysiology.
Keywords: RNA aptamer; cardiac function; chymase inhibitor; myocardial infarction; survival.
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