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Jumonji is a potential regulatory factor mediating nitric oxide-induced modulation of cardiac hypertrophy

Rabkin, Simon W; Klassen, Shaun S

Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine: February 2009 - Volume 10 - Issue 2 - p 206–211
doi: 10.2459/JCM.0b013e3283212ecd
Working hypothesis

Background and objectives Jumonji (jmj) is the prototypical member of the jmj domain-containing protein family. It regulates the expression of several genes, in particular genes involved in cardiac cell growth in the embryonic heart. The function of jmj in the mature or developed heart, however, is unclear.

Results We propose that JMJ domain 2A family may be involved in modulating the development of cardiac hypertrophy through interactions with cell cycle-regulatory proteins, specifically retinoblastoma protein, cyclin D and transcription factor E2F, that lead to cell growth. Because nitric oxide can block the development of cardiac hypertrophy and upregulate both jmj gene and protein expression, we propose that jmj is a novel regulatory factor mediating nitric oxide-induced modulation of cardiac hypertrophy.

Conclusion Jmj may be a critical, previously unrecognized factor that ‘counteracts’ the development of cardiac hypertrophy. Biotechnology approaches to increase its expression may be a potential therapeutic strategy to mitigate the increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality associated with cardiac hypertrophy.

Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Received 21 July, 2008

Revised 13 October, 2008

Accepted 7 November, 2008

Correspondence to Simon W. Rabkin, MD, FRCPC, FACC, University of British Columbia, 9th level, 2775 Laurel Street, Vancouver, BC V5Z 1M9, Canada Tel: +1 604 875 5847; fax: +1 604 875 5849; e-mail:

© 2009 Italian Federation of Cardiology. All rights reserved.