Central Role for the Cardiotonic Steroid Marinobufagenin in the Pathogenesis of Experimental Uremic Cardiomyopathy

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 9-30-2005


Patients with chronic renal failure develop a “uremic” cardiomyopathy characterized by diastolic dysfunction, cardiac hypertrophy, and systemic oxidant stress. Patients with chronic renal failure are also known to have increases in the circulating concentrations of the cardiotonic steroid marinobufagenin (MBG). On this background, we hypothesized that elevations in circulating MBG may be involved in the cardiomyopathy. First, we observed that administration of MBG (10 g/kg per day) for 4 weeks caused comparable increases in plasma MBG as partial nephrectomy at 4 weeks. MBG infusion caused increases in conscious blood pressure, cardiac weight, and the time constant for left ventricular relaxation similar to partial nephrectomy. Decreases in the expression of the cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum ATPase, cardiac fibrosis, and systemic oxidant stress were observed with both MBG infusion and partial nephrectomy. Next, rats were actively immunized against a MBG-BSA conjugate or BSA control, and partial nephrectomy was subsequently performed. Immunization against MBG attenuated the cardiac hypertrophy, impairment of diastolic function, cardiac fibrosis, and systemic oxidant stress seen with partial nephrectomy without a significant effect on conscious blood pressure. These data suggest that the increased concentrations of MBG are important in the cardiac disease and oxidant stress state seen with renal failure.


Data Supplement (unedited) at: http://hyper.ahajournals.org/cgi/content/full/01.HYP.0000202594.82271.92/DC1 Copyright © 2006 American Heart Association, Inc.

doi: 10.1161/01.HYP.0000202594.82271.92