CRELD1 (Cysteine-Rich with EGF-Like Domains 1) is a risk gene for non-syndromic atrioventricular septal defects in human patients. In a mouse model, Creld1 has been shown to be essential for heart development, particularly in septum and valve formation. However, due to the embryonic lethality of global Creld1 knockout (KO) mice, its cell type-specific function during peri- and postnatal stages remains unknown. Here, we generated conditional Creld1 KO mice lacking Creld1 either in the endocardium (KOTie2) or the myocardium (KOMyHC). Using a combination of cardiac phenotyping, histology, immunohistochemistry, RNA-sequencing and flow cytometry, we demonstrate that Creld1 function in the endocardium is dispensable for heart development. Lack of myocardial Creld1 causes extracellular matrix remodeling and trabeculation defects by modulation of the Notch1 signaling pathway. Hence, KOMyHC mice die early postnatally due to myocardial hypoplasia. Our results reveal that Creld1 not only controls the formation of septa and valves at an early stage during heart development, but also cardiac maturation and function at a later stage. These findings underline the central role of Creld1 in mammalian heart development and function.
FörderungenGerman Federal Ministry of Education and Research Daimler and Benz Foundation Fritz Thyssen foundation Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) under Germany's Excellence Strategy German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD)