Catestatin (CST), an endogenous antihypertensive/antiadrenergic peptide, is a novel regulator of cardiovascular physiology. Here, we report case-control studies in 2 geographically/ethnically distinct Indian populations (n≈4000) that showed association of the naturally-occurring human CST-Gly364Ser variant with increased risk for hypertension (age-adjusted odds ratios: 1.483; P=0.009 and 2.951; P=0.005). Consistently, 364Ser allele carriers displayed elevated systolic (up to ≈8 mm Hg; P=0.004) and diastolic (up to ≈6 mm Hg; P=0.001) blood pressure. The variant allele was also found to be in linkage disequilibrium with other functional single-nucleotide polymorphisms in the CHGA promoter and nearby coding region. Functional characterization of the Gly364Ser variant was performed using cellular/molecular biological experiments (viz peptide-receptor binding assays, nitric oxide [NO], phosphorylated extracellular regulated kinase, and phosphorylated endothelial NO synthase estimations) and computational approaches (molecular dynamics simulations for structural analysis of wild-type [CST-WT] and variant [CST-364Ser] peptides and docking of peptide/ligand with β-adrenergic receptors [ADRB1/2]). CST-WT and CST-364Ser peptides differed profoundly in their secondary structures and showed differential interactions with ADRB2; although CST-WT displaced the ligand bound to ADRB2, CST-364Ser failed to do the same. Furthermore, CST-WT significantly inhibited ADRB2-stimulated extracellular regulated kinase activation, suggesting an antagonistic role towards ADRB2 unlike CST-364Ser. Consequently, CST-WT was more potent in NO production in human umbilical vein endothelial cells as compared with CST-364Ser. This NO-producing ability of CST-WT was abrogated by ADRB2 antagonist ICI 118551. In conclusion, CST-364Ser allele enhanced the risk for hypertension in human populations, possibly via diminished endothelial NO production because of altered interactions of CST-364Ser peptide with ADRB2 as compared with CST-WT.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This work was supported by grants BT/PR9546/MED/12/349/2007 and BT/PR12820/BRB/10/726/2009 from the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India. This work was also supported in part by grants SR/SO/HS-084/2013A from the Science and Engineering Research Board, BT/PR4820/MED/12/622/2013 from DBT, Government of India, and NIH RO1 HL HL089473.
- chromogranin A
- genetic association study
- genetic variation
- nitric oxide