Qin Yi,Hao Xu, Ke Yang, Yue Wang, Bin Tan, Jie Tian, Jing Zhu
Previous studies from this group demonstrated that insulin gene enhancer binding protein ISL-1 (Islet-1) specifically induces the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) into cardiomyocyte‑like cells through histone acetylation. However, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. In the present study, the role of the histone acetylation and DNA methylation on the regulatory mechanism of the Islet‑1 was further investigated by methylation‑specific polymerase chain reaction (PCR), chromatin immunoprecipitation quantitative PCR and western blot analysis. The results demonstrated that Islet‑1 upregulated expression of general control of amino acid biosynthesis protein 5 (Gcn5) and enhanced the binding of Gcn5 to the promoters of GATA binding protein 4 (GATA4) and NK2 homeobox 5 (Nkx2.5). In addition, Islet-1 downregulated DNA methyltransferase (DNMT)‑1 expression and reduced its binding to the GATA4 promoter. In contrast, the amount of DNMT-1 binding on Nkx2.5 did not match the expression trend. Therefore, it was concluded that Islet‑1 may influence the histone acetylation and DNA methylation of GATA4 promoter region via Gcn5 and DNMT‑1 during the MSC differentiation into cardiomyocyte-like cells, thus prompting the expression of GATA4. The Nkx2.5 was likely only affected by histone acetylation instead of DNA methylation. The present study demonstrated that Islet‑1 induces the differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells into cardiomyocyte‑like cells through a specific interaction between histone acetylation and DNA methylation on regulating GATA4.