Mydgf promotes Cardiomyocyte proliferation and Neonatal Heart regeneration

Theranostics. 2020 Jul 11;10(20):9100-9112. doi: 10.7150/thno.44281. eCollection 2020.


Myeloid-derived growth factor (Mydgf), a paracrine protein secreted by bone marrow-derived monocytes and macrophages, was found to protect against cardiac injury following myocardial infarction (MI) in adult mice. We speculated that Mydgf might improve heart function via myocardial regeneration, which is essential for discovering the target to reverse heart failure. Methods: Two genetic mouse lines were used: global Mydgf knockout (Mydgf-KO) and Mydgf-EGFP mice. Two models of cardiac injury, apical resection was performed in neonatal and MI was performed in adult mice. Quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, western blot and flow cytometry were performed to study the protein expression. Immunofluorescence was performed to detect the proliferation of cardiomyocytes. Heart regeneration and cardiac function were evaluated by Masson's staining and echocardiography, respectively. RNA sequencing was employed to identify the key involved in Mydgf-induced cardiomyocyte proliferation. Mydgf recombinant protein injection was performed as a therapy for cardiac repair post MI in adult mice. Results: Mydgf expression could be significantly induced in neonatal mouse hearts after cardiac injury. Unexpectedly, we found that Mydgf was predominantly expressed by endothelial cells rather than macrophages in injured neonatal hearts. Mydgf deficiency impeded neonatal heart regeneration and injury-induced cardiomyocyte proliferation. Mydgf recombinant protein promoted primary mouse cardiomyocyte proliferation. Employing RNA sequencing and functional verification, we demonstrated that c-Myc/FoxM1 pathway mediated Mydgf-induced cardiomyocyte expansion. Mydgf recombinant protein improved cardiac function in adult mice after MI injury with inducing cardiomyocyte proliferation. Conclusion: Mydgf promotes cardiomyocyte proliferation by activating c-Myc/FoxM1 pathway and improves heart regeneration both in neonatal and adult mice after cardiac injury, providing a potential target to reverse cardiac remodeling and heart failure.

Keywords: FoxM1; Mydgf; c-Myc; cardiomyocyte proliferation; heart regeneration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Cell Proliferation / physiology*
  • Endothelial Cells / metabolism
  • Endothelial Cells / physiology
  • Heart / physiology*
  • Interleukins / metabolism*
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Macrophages / physiology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Monocytes / metabolism
  • Monocytes / physiology
  • Myocardial Infarction / metabolism*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / metabolism*
  • Myocytes, Cardiac / physiology*
  • Regeneration / physiology*


  • Interleukins
  • Mydgf protein, mouse