Synthetic chemically modified mRNA-based delivery of cytoprotective factor promotes early cardiomyocyte survival post-acute myocardial infarction

Chien-Ling Huang, Anne Laure Leblond, Elizebeth C. Turner, Arun Hs Kumar, Kenneth Martin, Derek Whelan, Donnchadh M. O'Sullivan, Noel M. Caplice

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


To extend the temporal window for cytoprotection in cardiomyocytes undergoing apoptosis after hypoxia and myocardial infarction (MI), a synthetic chemically modified mRNA (modRNA) was used to drive delivery of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF1) within the area at risk in an in vivo murine model of MI. Delivery of IGF1 modRNA, with a polyethylenimine-based nanoparticle, augmented secreted and cell-associated IGF1, promoting cardiomyocyte survival and abrogating cell apoptosis under hypoxia-induced apoptosis conditions. Translation of modRNA-IGF1 was sufficient to induce downstream increases in the levels of Akt and Erk phosphorylation. Downregulation of IGF1 specific miRNA-1 and -133 but not miR-145 expression was also confirmed. As a proof of concept, intramyocardial delivery of modRNA-IGF1 but not control modRNA-GFP significantly decreased the level of TUNEL positive cells, augmented Akt phosphorylation, and decreased caspase-9 activity within the infarct border zone 24 h post-MI. These findings demonstrate the potential for an extended cytoprotective effect of transient IGF1 driven by synthetic modRNA delivery. (Figure Presented).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)991-996
Number of pages6
JournalMolecular Pharmaceutics
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • cytoprotective
  • insulin-like growth factor-1
  • modified mRNA
  • myocardial infarction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery

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