Growth arrest specific protein 6 participates in DOCA-induced target-organ damage


  • J.K. Park
  • S. Theuer
  • T. Kirsch
  • C. Lindschau
  • U. Klinge
  • A. Heuser
  • R. Plehm
  • M. Todiras
  • P. Carmeliet
  • H. Haller
  • F.C. Luft
  • D.N. Mueller
  • A. Fiebeler


  • Hypertension


  • Hypertension 54 (2): 359-364


  • Growth arrest-specific protein 6 (Gas 6) is involved in inflammatory kidney diseases, vascular remodeling, cell adhesion, and thrombus formation. We explored a role for Gas 6 in aldosterone-induced target organ damage. We observed that Gas 6 was upregulated in rats with high aldosterone levels. Mineralocorticoid receptor blockade prevented target organ damage and decreased the elevated Gas 6 expression. Vascular smooth muscle cells given aldosterone increased their Gas 6 expression in vitro. To test the pathophysiological relevance, we investigated the effects of deoxycorticosterone acetate (DOCA) on Gas 6 gene-deleted ((-/-)) mice. After 6 weeks DOCA, Gas 6(-/-) mice developed similar telemetric blood pressure elevations compared to wild-type mice but were protected from cardiac hypertrophy. Cardiac expression of interleukin 6 and collagen IV was blunted in Gas 6(-/-) mice, indicating reduced inflammation and fibrosis. Gas 6(-/-) mice also had an improved renal function with reduced albuminuria, compared to wild-type mice. Renal fibrosis and fibronectin deposition in the kidney were also reduced. Gas 6 deficiency reduces the detrimental effects of aldosterone on cardiac and renal remodeling independent of blood pressure reduction. Gas 6 appears to play a role in mineralocorticoid receptor-mediated target organ damage. Furthermore, because warfarin interferes with Gas 6 protein expression, the findings could be of clinical relevance for anticoagulant choices.