p300 in cardiac development and accelerated cardiac aging

Asish K. Ghosh*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The heart is the first functional organ that develops during embryonic development. While a heartbeat indicates life, cessation of a heartbeat signals the end of life. Heart disease, due either to congenital defects or to acquired dysfunctions in adulthood, remains the leading cause of death worldwide. Epigenetics plays a key role in both embryonic heart development and heart disease in adults. Stress-induced vascular injury activates pathways involved in pathogenesis of accelerated cardiac aging that includes cellular dysfunction, pathological cardiac hypertrophy, diabetic cardiomyopathy, cardiac matrix remodeling, cardiac dysfunction and heart failure. Acetyltransferase p300 (p300), a major epigenetic regulator, plays a pivotal role in heart development during embryogenesis, as deficiency or abnormal expression of p300 leads to embryonic death at early gestation periods due to deformation of the heart and neural tube. Acetyltransferase p300 controls heart development through histone acetylation-mediated chromatin remodeling and transcriptional regulation of genes required for cardiac development. In adult hearts, p300 is differentially expressed in different chambers and epigenetically controls cardiac gene expression. Deregulation of p300, in response to prohypertrophic and profibrogenic stress signals, is associated with increased recruitment of p300 to several genes including transcription factors, increased acetylation of specific lysines in histones and transcription factors, altered chromatin organization, and increased hypertrophic and fibrogenic gene expression. Cardiac hypertrophy and myocardial fibrogenesis are common pathological manifestations of several stress-induced accelerated cardiac aging-related pathologies, including high blood pressure-induced or environmentally induced cardiac hypertrophy, myocardial infarction, diabetes-induced cardiomyopathy, and heart failure. Numerous studies using cellular and animal models clearly indicate that pharmacologic or genetic normalization of p300 activity has the potential to prevent or halt the progression of cardiac aging pathologies. Based on these preclinical studies, development of safe, non-toxic, small molecule inhibitors/epidrugs targeting p300 is an ideal approach to control accelerated cardiac aging-related deaths worldwide.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)916-926
Number of pages11
JournalAging and Disease
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2020


  • Acetyltransferase p300
  • Air-pollutant
  • Cardiac aging
  • Epidrugs
  • Epigenetics
  • Extracellular matrix
  • Fibrosis
  • Heart development
  • Heart failure
  • Hypertension
  • Hypertrophy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cell Biology


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