Mechanism of complement activation after coronary artery occlusion: evidence that myocardial ischemia in dogs causes release of constituents of myocardial subcellular origin that complex with human C1q in vivo

Circ Res. 1988 Mar;62(3):572-84. doi: 10.1161/01.res.62.3.572.


To evaluate whether ischemic myocardium releases molecules that react with the first component of complement, we studied cardiac lymph from eight dogs before and at intervals after coronary artery occlusion and reperfusion. Before occlusion, the dogs were injected intravenously with radiolabeled human C1q. Labeled C1q could be detected in the cardiac lymph within minutes following injection. Rabbit antisera, prepared against substances precipitated from postreprefusion cardiac lymph by anti-human C1q, also reacted with specific constituents of isolated cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum and mitochondria. To evaluate whether mitochondria are the source of these C1q-binding proteins, we isolated intramyofibrillar and subsarcolemmal mitochondria from canine heart and incubated sonicates of these with purified C1q, immobilized on nitrocellulose. Molecules bound to the immobilized C1q were removed with 0.1% sodium dodecyl sulfate, fractionated under reducing conditions by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and transferred electrophoretically to nitrocellulose paper. Antisera prepared against postreperfusion lymph reacted with a 31,000-32,000-dalton protein in these nitrocellulose paper replicas. Since this protein originates from mitochondria, binds to C1q, and is recognized by antibodies made against postreperfusion lymph, this protein is likely to be one of the subcellular constituents that, upon release from ischemic cells, activates the complement cascade. To evaluate the clinical relevance of these observations, we tested sera from 53 patients obtained 48-72 hours after hospitalization for suspected myocardial infarction.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism
  • Complement Activating Enzymes / immunology*
  • Complement Activating Enzymes / metabolism
  • Complement Activation*
  • Complement C1 / immunology*
  • Complement C1 / metabolism
  • Complement C1q
  • Coronary Disease / immunology*
  • Dogs
  • Humans
  • Hyaluronan Receptors*
  • Lymph / immunology*
  • Membrane Glycoproteins*
  • Mitochondrial Proteins
  • Myocardial Infarction / immunology
  • Myocardium / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Complement / physiology*


  • C1QBP protein, human
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Complement C1
  • Hyaluronan Receptors
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Mitochondrial Proteins
  • Receptors, Complement
  • complement 1q receptor
  • Complement C1q
  • Complement Activating Enzymes