Thyroid hormone (T3) dyshomeostasis in the cardiac ischemia-reperfusion (IR) setting negatively impacts on mitochondria function and extracellular matrix remodeling. The modulation of cardiac miRNAs may represent the underlying molecular mechanisms, but a systems biology perspective investigating this critical issue in depth is still lacking. A rat model of myocardial IR, with or without an early short-term T3-replacement, was used to predict putative T3-dependent miRNA-gene interactions targeted to mitochondria quality control and wound healing repair. As evidenced by mRNA and miRNA expression profiling, the T3 supplementation reverted the expression of 87 genes and 11 miRNAs that were dysregulated in the untreated group. In silico crossing and functional analysis of the T3-associated differentially expressed transcripts, identified a signature of interconnected miRNA-gene regulatory circuits that confer resistance to noxious cascades of acute stress. In this network the T3-down-regulated Tp53, Jun and Sp1 transcription factors emerge as critical nodes linking intrinsic cell death and oxidative stress pathways to adverse remodeling cascades. The data presented here provide a novel insight into the molecular basis of T3 cardioprotection in the early post-IR phase and highlight the contribution of a previously unappreciated complex T3-regulatory network that may be helpful in translating T3 replacement into clinical practice.
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