Kenneth R . Chien

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The purification, renewal and differentiation of native cardiac progenitors would form a mechanistic underpinning for unravelling steps for cardiac cell lineage formation, and their links to forms of congenital and adult cardiac diseases. Until now there has been little evidence for native cardiac precursor cells in the postnatal heart. Herein, we report(More)
The heart is formed from cardiogenic progenitors expressing the transcription factors Nkx2-5 and Isl1 (refs 1 and 2). These multipotent progenitors give rise to cardiomyocyte, smooth muscle and endothelial cells, the major lineages of the mature heart. Here we identify a novel cardiogenic precursor marked by expression of the transcription factor Wt1 and(More)
Cardiogenesis requires the generation of endothelial, cardiac, and smooth muscle cells, thought to arise from distinct embryonic precursors. We use genetic fate-mapping studies to document that isl1(+) precursors from the second heart field can generate each of these diverse cardiovascular cell types in vivo. Utilizing embryonic stem (ES) cells, we clonally(More)
MLP is a LIM-only protein of terminally differentiated striated muscle cells, where it accumulates at actin-based structures involved in cytoarchitecture organization. To assess its role in muscle differentiation, we disrupted the MLP gene in mice. MLP (-/-) mice developed dilated cardiomyopathy with hypertrophy and heart failure after birth.(More)
The nuclear hormone receptor PPAR gamma promotes adipogenesis and macrophage differentiation and is a primary pharmacological target in the treatment of type II diabetes. Here, we show that PPAR gamma gene knockout results in two independent lethal phases. Initially, PPAR gamma deficiency interferes with terminal differentiation of the trophoblast and(More)
Muscle cells respond to mechanical stretch stimuli by triggering downstream signals for myocyte growth and survival. The molecular components of the muscle stretch sensor are unknown, and their role in muscle disease is unclear. Here, we present biophysical/biochemical studies in muscle LIM protein (MLP) deficient cardiac muscle that support a selective(More)
The embryonic cellular events that set the asymmetry of the genetic control circuit controlling left-right (L-R) axis determination in mammals are poorly understood. New insight into this problem was obtained by analyzing mouse mutants lacking the KIF3A motor subunit of the kinesin-II motor complex. Embryos lacking KIF3A die at 10 days postcoitum, exhibit(More)
During heart development the second heart field (SHF) provides progenitor cells for most cardiomyocytes and expresses the homeodomain factor Nkx2-5. We now show that feedback repression of Bmp2/Smad1 signaling by Nkx2-5 critically regulates SHF proliferation and outflow tract (OFT) morphology. In the cardiac fields of Nkx2-5 mutants, genes controlling(More)
During cardiogenesis, perturbation of a key transition at mid-gestation from cardiac patterning to cardiac growth and chamber maturation often leads to diverse types of congenital heart disease, such as ventricular septal defect (VSD), myocardium noncompaction, and ventricular hypertrabeculation. This transition, which occurs at embryonic day (E) 9.0-9.5 in(More)
Mouse embryos lacking the retinoic acid receptor gene RXR(alpha) die in midgestation from hypoplastic development of the myocardium of the ventricular chambers and consequent cardiac failure. In this study, we address the issue of whether the RXRalpha gene is required in the cardiomyocyte lineage by generating mice that harbor a ventricular restricted(More)