METTL14 is required for exercise-induced cardiac hypertrophy and protects against myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury

Lijun Wang, Jiaqi Wang, Pujiao Yu, Jingyi Feng, Gui-e Xu, Xuan Zhao, Tianhui Wang, H. Immo Lehmann, Guoping Li, Joost P. G. Sluijter & Junjie Xiao

Published: 9 November 2022


RNA m6A modification is the most widely distributed RNA methylation and is closely related to various pathophysiological processes. Although the benefit of regular exercise on the heart has been well recognized, the role of RNA m6A in exercise training and exercise-induced physiological cardiac hypertrophy remains largely unknown. Here, we show that endurance exercise training leads to reduced cardiac mRNA m6A levels. METTL14 is downregulated by exercise, both at the level of RNA m6A and at the protein level. In vivo, wild-type METTL14 overexpression, but not MTase inactive mutant METTL14, blocks exercise-induced physiological cardiac hypertrophy. Cardiac-specific METTL14 knockdown attenuates acute ischemia-reperfusion injury as well as cardiac dysfunction in ischemia-reperfusion remodeling. Mechanistically, silencing METTL14 suppresses Phlpp2 mRNA m6A modifications and activates Akt-S473, in turn regulating cardiomyocyte growth and apoptosis. Our data indicates that METTL14 plays an important role in maintaining cardiac homeostasis. METTL14 downregulation represents a promising therapeutic strategy to attenuate cardiac remodeling.

Full Access Link: Nature communications