3' untranslated region of Ckip-1 inhibits cardiac hypertrophy independently of its cognate protein

Eur Heart J. 2021 Sep 21;42(36):3786-3799. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehab503.


Aims: 3' untranslated region (3' UTR) of mRNA is more conserved than other non-coding sequences in vertebrate genomes, and its sequence space has substantially expanded during the evolution of higher organisms, which substantiates their significance in biological regulation. However, the independent role of 3' UTR in cardiovascular disease was largely unknown.

Methods and results: Using bioinformatics, RNA fluorescent in situ hybridization and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, we found that 3' UTR and coding sequence regions of Ckip-1 mRNA exhibited diverse expression and localization in cardiomyocytes. We generated cardiac-specific Ckip-1 3' UTR overexpression mice under wild type and casein kinase 2 interacting protein-1 (CKIP-1) knockout background. Cardiac remodelling was assessed by histological, echocardiography, and molecular analyses at 4 weeks after transverse aortic constriction (TAC) surgery. The results showed that cardiac Ckip-1 3' UTR significantly inhibited TAC-induced cardiac hypertrophy independent of CKIP-1 protein. To determine the mechanism of Ckip-1 3' UTR in cardiac hypertrophy, we performed transcriptome and metabolomics analyses, RNA immunoprecipitation, biotin-based RNA pull-down, and reporter gene assays. We found that Ckip-1 3' UTR promoted fatty acid metabolism through AMPK-PPARα-CPT1b axis, leading to its protection against pathological cardiac hypertrophy. Moreover, Ckip-1 3' UTR RNA therapy using adeno-associated virus obviously alleviates cardiac hypertrophy and improves heart function.

Conclusions: These findings disclose that Ckip-1 3' UTR inhibits cardiac hypertrophy independently of its cognate protein. Ckip-1 3' UTR is an effective RNA-based therapy tool for treating cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure.

Keywords: AMPK; CKIP-1 3′ UTR; CaMKK2; Cardiac hypertrophy; Fatty acid metabolism.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 3' Untranslated Regions / genetics
  • Animals
  • Cardiomegaly* / genetics
  • Cardiomegaly* / prevention & control
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Heart Failure* / genetics
  • In Situ Hybridization, Fluorescence
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Myocytes, Cardiac


  • 3' Untranslated Regions
  • CKIP-1 protein, mouse
  • Carrier Proteins