Assessment of cardiac protein metabolism in thyroxine-induced left ventricular hypertrophy requires measurements of both protein synthesis and degradation. In vivo protein degradative rates can best be measured as the difference between rates of protein synthesis and growth. Accordingly, rates of left ventricular protein accumulation were determined in growing rabbits, and in animals administered intravenous L-thyroxine (200 micrograms X kg-1 X day-1) for up to 15 days. Left ventricular protein fractional synthetic rates in euthyroid and thyroxine-treated rabbits were measured by continuous infusion of [3H]leucine (200 mu Ci/h X 6 h), and results converted to milligrams protein synthesized and degraded per day. Thyroxine administration produced left ventricular hypertrophy by increasing the rate of total protein synthesis (35.7 +/- 2.0, 71.0 +/- 7.0, and 62.6 +/- 4.0 mg of left ventricular protein synthesized per day for 0-, 3-, and 9-day, thyroxine-treated rabbits, respectively). However, the increased rate of total protein synthesis was greater than the measured rate of total protein accumulation (8.1 vs. 15.9 mg protein/day for euthyroid and thyroxine-treated animals), indicating that left ventricular protein degradative rates were increased as well. These studies indicate that accelerated proteolysis may be important in the molecular and architectural remodeling of the rapidly hypertrophying heart during thyrotoxicosis.
- Copyright © 1986 the American Physiological Society