G protein-coupled estrogen receptor (GPER) deficiency induces cardiac remodeling through oxidative stress

Hao Wang, Xuming Sun, Marina S. Lin, Carlos M. Ferrario, Holly Van Remmen, Leanne Groban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Oxidative stress has been implicated in the unfavorable changes in cardiac function and remodeling that occur after ovarian estrogen loss. Using ovariectomized rat models, we previously reported that the cardioprotective actions of estrogen are mediated by the G protein-coupled estrogen receptor (GPER). Here, in 9-month-old, female cardiomyocyte-specific GPER knockout (KO) mice vs sex- and age-matched wild-type (WT) mice, we found increased cardiac oxidative stress and oxidant damage, measured as a decreased ratio of reduced glutathione to oxidized glutathione, increased 4-hydroxynonenal and 8-hydroxy-2′-deoxyguanosine (8-oxo-DG) staining, and increased expression of oxidative stress-related genes. GPER KO mice also displayed increased heart weight, cardiac collagen deposition, and Doppler-derived filling pressure, and decreased percent fractional shortening and early mitral annular velocity compared with WT controls. Treatment of GPER KO mice for 8 weeks with phosphonium [10-(4,5-dimethoxy-2-methyl 3,6-dioxo-1,4-cyclohexadien-1-yl)decyl] triphenyl-,mesylate (MitoQ), a mitochondria-targeted antioxidant, significantly attenuated these measures of cardiac dysfunction, and MitoQ decreased 8-oxo-DG intensity compared with treatment with an inactive comparator compound, (1-decyl)triphenylphosphonium bromide (P < 0.05). A real-time polymerase chain reaction array analysis of 84 oxidative stress and antioxidant defense genes revealed that MitoQ attenuates the increase in NADPH oxidase 4 and prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 and the decrease in uncoupling protein 3 and glutathione S-transferase kappa 1 seen in GPER KO mice. Our findings suggest that the cardioprotective effects of GPER include an antioxidant role and that targeted strategies to limit oxidative stress after early noncancerous surgical extirpation of ovaries or menopause may help limit alterations in cardiac structure and function related to estrogen loss.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-51
Number of pages13
JournalTranslational Research
StatePublished - Sep 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Biochemistry, medical
  • Physiology (medical)


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