Comprehensive Analysis of N6-Methyladenosine RNA Methylation Regulators Expression Identify Distinct Molecular Subtypes of Myocardial Infarction

Front Cell Dev Biol. 2021 Oct 27;9:756483. doi: 10.3389/fcell.2021.756483. eCollection 2021.


Background: Myocardial infarction (MI) is one of the leading threats to human health. N6-methyladenosine (m6A) modification, as a pivotal regulator of messenger RNA stability, protein expression, and cellular processes, exhibits important roles in the development of cardiac remodeling and cardiomyocyte contractile function. Methods: The expression levels of m6A regulators were analyzed using the GSE5406 database. We analyzed genome-wide association study data and single-cell sequencing data to confirm the functional importance of m6A regulators in MI. Three molecular subtypes with different clinical characteristics were established to tailor treatment strategies for patients with MI. We applied pathway analysis and differentially expressed gene (DEG) analysis to study the changes in gene expression and identified four common DEGs. Furthermore, we constructed the protein-protein interaction network and confirmed several hub genes in three clusters of MI. To lucubrate the potential functions, we performed a ClueGO analysis of these hub networks. Results: In this study, we identified that the levels of FTO, YTHDF3, ZC3H13, and WTAP were dramatically differently expressed in MI tissues compared with controls. Bioinformatics analysis showed that DEGs in MI were significantly related to modulating calcium signaling and chemokine signaling, and m6A regulators were related to regulating glucose measurement and elevated blood glucose levels. Furthermore, genome-wide association study data analysis showed that WTAP single-nucleotide polymorphism was significantly related to the progression of MI. In addition, single-cell sequencing found that WTAP is widely expressed in the heart tissues. Moreover, we conducted consensus clustering for MI in view of the dysregulated m6A regulators' expression in MI. According to the expression levels, we found MI patients could be clustered into three subtypes. Pathway analysis showed the DEGs among different clusters in MI were assigned to HIF-1, IL-17, MAPK, PI3K-Akt signaling pathways, etc. The module analysis detected several genes, including BAG2, BAG3, MMP2, etc. We also found that MI-related network was significantly related to positive and negative regulation of angiogenesis and response to heat. The hub networks in MI clusters were significantly related to antigen processing and ubiquitin-mediated proteolysis, RNA splicing, and stability, indicating that these processes may contribute to the development of MI. Conclusion: Collectively, our study could provide more information for understanding the roles of m6A in MI, which may provide a novel insight into identifying biomarkers for MI treatment and diagnosis.

Keywords: DEG analysis; PPI network; RNA methylation; m6A RNA modification; myocardial infarction.