A SGLT2 inhibitor dapagliflozin suppresses prolonged ventricular-repolarization through augmentation of mitochondrial function in insulin-resistant metabolic syndrome rats
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Background: Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a prevalent risk factor for cardiac dysfunction. Although SGLT2-inhibitors have important cardioprotective effects in hyperglycemia, their underlying mechanisms are complex and not completely understood. Therefore, we examined mechanisms of a SGLT2-inhibitor dapagliflozin (DAPA)-related cardioprotection in overweight insulin-resistant MetS-rats comparison with insulin (INSU), behind its glucose-lowering effect. Methods: A 28-week high-carbohydrate diet-induced MetS-rats received DAPA (5 mg/kg), INSU (0.15 mg/kg) or vehicle for 2 weeks. To validate MetS-induction, we monitored all animals weekly by measuring body weight, blood glucose and HOMO-IR index, electrocardiograms, heart rate, systolic and diastolic pressures. Results: DAPA-treatment of MetS-rats significantly augmented the increased blood pressure, prolonged Q-R interval, and low heart rate with depressed left ventricular function and relaxation of the aorta. Prolonged-action potentials were preserved with DAPA-treatment, more prominently than INSU-treatment, at most, through the augmentation in depressed voltage-gated K+-channel currents. DAPA, more prominently than INSU-treatment, preserved the depolarized mitochondrial membrane potential, and altered mitochondrial protein levels such as Mfn-1, Mfn-2, and Fis-1 as well as provided significant augmentation in cytosolic Ca2+-homeostasis. Furthermore, DAPA also induced significant augmentation in voltage-gated Na+-currents and intracellular pH, and the cellular levels of increased oxidative stress, protein-thiol oxidation and ADP/ATP ratio in cardiomyocytes from MetS rats. Moreover, DAPA-treatment normalized the increases in the mRNA level of SGLT2 in MetS-rat heart. Conclusions: Overall, our data provided a new insight into DAPA-associated cardioprotection in MetS rats, including suppression of prolonged ventricular-repolarization through augmentation of mitochondrial function and oxidative stress followed by improvement of fusion-fission proteins, out of its glucose-lowering effect.