Salvia miltiorrhiza (SM) Injection Ameliorates Iron Overload-Associated Cardiac Dysfunction by Regulating the Expression of DMT1, TfR1, and FP1 in Rats

Previous studies have found that Salvia miltiorrhiza (SM) injection have a protective effect on the iron overloaded (IO) heart. However, the mechanisms are not completely known. In the present study, we investigated the underlying mechanisms based on the iron transport-related proteins. The rats were randomly divided into five groups: control, IO group, low-dose SM group, high-dose SM group, and deferoxamine control group. Iron dextran was injected to establish the IO model. After 14 days of treatment, cardiac histological changes were observed by hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining. Iron uptake-related proteins divalent metal transporter-1 (DMT-1), transferrin receptor-1 (TfR-1), and iron export-related proteins ferroportin1 (FP1) in the heart were detected by Western blotting. The results showed that SM injection decreased cardiac iron deposition, ameliorated cardiac function, and inhibited cardiac oxidation. Most important of all, SM injection downregulated the expression of DMT-1 and TfR-1 and upregulated FP1 protein levels compared with the IO group. Our results indicated that reducing cardiac iron uptake and increasing iron excretion may be one of the important mechanisms of SM injection reducing cardiac iron deposition and improving cardiac function under the conditions of IO.
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