Autoimmune Myocarditis, Valvulitis, and Cardiomyopathy

Autoimmune Myocarditis, Valvulitis, and Cardiomyopathy

Autoimmune Myocarditis, Valvulitis, and Cardiomyopathy

ABSTRACT

Myocarditis and valvulitis are inflammatory diseases affecting myocardium and valve.
Myocarditis, a viral-induced disease of myocardium, may lead to dilated cardiomyopathy
and loss of heart function. Valvulitis leads to deformed heart valves and altered
blood flow in rheumatic heart disease. Animal models recapitulating these diseases are
important in understanding the human condition. Cardiac myosin is a major autoantigen
in heart, and antibodies and T cells to cardiac myosin are evident in inflammatory heart
diseases. This unit is a practical guide to induction and evaluation of experimental autoimmune
myocarditis (EAM) in several mouse strains and the Lewis rat. Purification
protocols for cardiac myosin and protocols for induction of EAM by cardiac myosin
and its myocarditis-producing peptides, and coxsackievirus CVB3, are defined. Protocols
for assessment of myocarditis and valvulitis in humans and animal models provide
methods to define functional autoantibodies targeting cardiac myosin, β-adrenergic, and
muscarinic receptors, and their deposition in tissues.

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