Polycystin-1 is a cardiomyocyte mechanosensor that governs L-type Ca<sup>2+</sup> channel protein stability

Zully Pedrozo, Alfredo Criollo, Pavan K. Battiprolu, Cyndi R. Morales, Ariel Contreras-Ferrat, Carolina Fernández, Nan Jiang, Xiang Luo, Michael J. Caplan, Stefan Somlo, Beverly A Rothermel, Thomas G. Gillette, Sergio Lavandero, Joseph A Hill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Scopus citations


Background: L-type calcium channel activity is critical to afterload-induced hypertrophic growth of the heart. However, the mechanisms governing mechanical stress-induced activation of L-type calcium channel activity are obscure. Polycystin-1 (PC-1) is a G protein-coupled receptor-like protein that functions as a mechanosensor in a variety of cell types and is present in cardiomyocytes. Methods and Results-We subjected neonatal rat ventricular myocytes to mechanical stretch by exposing them to hypoosmotic medium or cyclic mechanical stretch, triggering cell growth in a manner dependent on L-type calcium channel activity. RNAi-dependent knockdown of PC-1 blocked this hypertrophy. Overexpression of a C-terminal fragment of PC-1 was sufficient to trigger neonatal rat ventricular myocyte hypertrophy. Exposing neonatal rat ventricular myocytes to hypo-osmotic medium resulted in an increase in α1C protein levels, a response that was prevented by PC-1 knockdown. MG132, a proteasomal inhibitor, rescued PC-1 knockdown-dependent declines in α1C protein. To test this in vivo, we engineered mice harboring conditional silencing of PC-1 selectively in cardiomyocytes (PC-1 knockout) and subjected them to mechanical stress in vivo (transverse aortic constriction). At baseline, PC-1 knockout mice manifested decreased cardiac function relative to littermate controls, and α1C L-type calcium channel protein levels were significantly lower in PC-1 knockout hearts. Whereas control mice manifested robust transverse aortic constriction-induced increases in cardiac mass, PC-1 knockout mice showed no significant growth. Likewise, transverse aortic constriction-elicited increases in hypertrophic markers and interstitial fibrosis were blunted in the knockout animals Conclusion-PC-1 is a cardiomyocyte mechanosensor that is required for cardiac hypertrophy through a mechanism that involves stabilization of α1C protein.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2131-2142
Number of pages12
Issue number24
StatePublished - Jun 16 2015



  • Cardiomegaly
  • Cellular
  • Mechanotransduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

Cite this

Pedrozo, Z., Criollo, A., Battiprolu, P. K., Morales, C. R., Contreras-Ferrat, A., Fernández, C., Jiang, N., Luo, X., Caplan, M. J., Somlo, S., Rothermel, B. A., Gillette, T. G., Lavandero, S., & Hill, J. A. (2015). Polycystin-1 is a cardiomyocyte mechanosensor that governs L-type Ca<sup>2+</sup> channel protein stability. Circulation, 131(24), 2131-2142. https://doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.114.013537