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Creators/Authors contains: "Zaragoza, Michael V."

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  1. Abstract Background Mutations in LMNA , encoding lamin A/C, lead to a variety of diseases known as laminopathies including dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and skeletal abnormalities. Though previous studies have investigated the dysregulation of gene expression in cells from patients with DCM, the role of epigenetic (gene regulatory) mechanisms, such as DNA methylation, has not been thoroughly investigated. Furthermore, the impact of family-specific LMNA mutations on DNA methylation is unknown. Here, we performed reduced representation bisulfite sequencing on ten pairs of fibroblasts and their induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) derivatives from two families with DCM due to distinct LMNA mutations, onemore »of which also induces brachydactyly. Results Family-specific differentially methylated regions (DMRs) were identified by comparing the DNA methylation landscape of patient and control samples. Fibroblast DMRs were found to enrich for distal regulatory features and transcriptionally repressed chromatin and to associate with genes related to phenotypes found in tissues affected by laminopathies. These DMRs, in combination with transcriptome-wide expression data and lamina-associated domain (LAD) organization, revealed the presence of inter-family epimutation hotspots near differentially expressed genes, most of which were located outside LADs redistributed in LMNA -related DCM. Comparison of DMRs found in fibroblasts and iPSCs identified regions where epimutations were persistent across both cell types. Finally, a network of aberrantly methylated disease-associated genes revealed a potential molecular link between pathways involved in bone and heart development. Conclusions Our results identified both shared and mutation-specific laminopathy epimutation landscapes that were consistent with lamin A/C mutation-mediated epigenetic aberrancies that arose in somatic and early developmental cell stages.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2022
  2. Abstract

    Genetic mutations to the Lamin A/C gene (LMNA) can cause heart disease, but the mechanisms making cardiac tissues uniquely vulnerable to the mutations remain largely unknown. Further, patients withLMNAmutations have highly variable presentation of heart disease progression and type.In vitropatient-specific experiments could provide a powerful platform for studying this phenomenon, but the use of induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (iPSC-CM) introduces heterogeneity in maturity and function thus complicating the interpretation of the results of any single experiment. We hypothesized that integrating single cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) with analysis of the tissue architecture and contractile function would elucidate some ofmore »the probable mechanisms. To test this, we investigated five iPSC-CM lines, three controls and two patients with a (c.357-2A>G) mutation. The patient iPSC-CM tissues had significantly weaker stress generation potential than control iPSC-CM tissues demonstrating the viability of ourin vitroapproach. Through scRNA-seq, differentially expressed genes between control and patient lines were identified. Some of these genes, linked to quantitative structural and functional changes, were cardiac specific, explaining the targeted nature of the disease progression seen in patients. The results of this work demonstrate the utility of combiningin vitrotools in exploring heart disease mechanics.

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