Cardiomyocyte Autophagy

Cardiomyocyte Autophagy diagram

We, and others, have hypothesized that cardiomyocyte death contributes to the transition from stable hypertrophy to heart failure. We have collected recent evidence implicating autophagy, a highly conserved pathway for recycling intracellular proteins and organelles, in the pressure-stressed heart. In other contexts, autophagy is capable of inducing a caspase-independent form of programmed cell death. Work is underway to elucidate molecular mechanisms of autophagy in heart and to explore its contribution to the pathogenesis of heart failure.