Therapeutic targeting of oxidative stress with coenzyme Q10 counteracts exaggerated diabetic cardiomyopathy in a mouse model of diabetes with diminished PI3K(p110α) signaling Academic Article uri icon


  • Diabetes-induced cardiac complications include left ventricular (LV) dysfunction and heart failure. We previously demonstrated that LV phosphoinositide 3-kinase p110α (PI3K) protects the heart against diabetic cardiomyopathy, associated with reduced NADPH oxidase expression and activity. Conversely, in dominant negative PI3K(p110α) transgenic mice (dnPI3K), reduced cardiac PI3K signaling exaggerated diabetes-induced cardiomyopathy, associated with upregulated NADPH oxidase. The goal was to examine whether chronic supplementation with the antioxidant coenzyme Q(10) (CoQ(10)) could attenuate LV superoxide and diabetic cardiomyopathy in a setting of impaired PI3K signaling. Diabetes was induced in 6-week-old nontransgenic and dnPI3K male mice via streptozotocin. After 4 weeks of diabetes, CoQ(10) supplementation commenced (10 mg/kg ip, 3 times/week, 8 weeks). At study end (12 weeks of diabetes), markers of LV function, cardiomyocyte hypertrophy, collagen deposition, NADPH oxidase, oxidative stress (3-nitrotyrosine), and concentrations of CoQ(9) and CoQ(10) were determined. LV NADPH oxidase (Nox2 gene expression and activity, and lucigenin-enhanced chemiluminescence), as well as oxidative stress, were increased by diabetes, exaggerated in diabetic dnPI3K mice, and attenuated by CoQ(10). Diabetes-induced LV diastolic dysfunction (prolonged deceleration time, elevated end-diastolic pressure, impaired E/A ratio), cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and fibrosis, expression of atrial natriuretic peptide, connective tissue growth factor, and β-myosin heavy chain were all attenuated by CoQ(10). Chronic CoQ(10) supplementation attenuates aspects of diabetic cardiomyopathy, even in a setting of reduced cardiac PI3K protective signaling. Given that CoQ(10) supplementation has been suggested to have positive outcomes in heart failure patients, chronic CoQ(10) supplementation may be an attractive adjunct therapy for diabetic heart failure.

publication date

  • October 2015