K Grube, J Rüdebusch, Z Xu, T Böckenholt, C Methner, T Müller, F Cuello, K Zimmermann, X Yang, SB Felix, MV Cohen, JM Downey, T Krieg
Basic Res Cardiol
Protection achieved by ischemic preconditioning is dependent on A(2B) adenosine receptors (A(2B)AR) in rabbit and mouse hearts and, predictably, an A(2B)AR agonist protects them. But it is controversial whether cardiomyocytes themselves actually express A(2B)AR. The present study tested whether A(2B)AR could be demonstrated on rat cardiomyocytes. Isolated rat hearts experienced 30 min of ischemia and 120 min of reperfusion. The highly selective, cell-permeant A(2B)AR agonist BAY60-6583 (500 nM) infused at reperfusion reduced infarct size from 40.4 ± 2.0% of the risk zone in control hearts to 19.9 ± 2.8% indicating that A(2B)AR are protective in rat heart as well. Furthermore, BAY60-6583 reduced calcium-induced mitochondrial permeability transition in isolated rat cardiomyocytes. A(2B)AR protein could be demonstrated in isolated cardiomyocytes by western blotting. In addition, message for A(2B)AR was found in individual cardiomyocytes using quantitative RT-PCR. Surprisingly, immunofluorescence microscopy did not show A(2B)AR on the cardiomyocyte's sarcolemma but rather at intracellular sites. Co-staining with MitoTracker Red in isolated cardiomyocytes revealed A(2B)AR are localized to mitochondria. Western blot analysis of a mitochondrial fraction from either rat heart biopsies or isolated cardiomyocytes revealed a strong A(2B)AR band. Thus, the present study demonstrates that activation of A(2B)AR is strongly cardioprotective in rat heart and suppresses transition pores in isolated cardiomyocytes, and A(2B)AR are expressed in individual cardiomyocytes. However, surprisingly, A(2B)AR are present in or near mitochondria rather than on the sarcolemma as are other adenosine receptors. Because A(2B)AR signaling is thought to result in inhibition of mitochondrial transition pores, this convenient location may be important.