Hyperglycemia regulates cardiac K+ channels via O-GlcNAc-CaMKII and NOX2-ROS-PKC pathways

Bence Hegyi, Johanna M. Borst, Logan R.J. Bailey, Erin Y. Shen, Austen J. Lucena, Manuel F. Navedo, Julie Bossuyt, Donald M. Bers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Chronic hyperglycemia and diabetes lead to impaired cardiac repolarization, K+ channel remodeling and increased arrhythmia risk. However, the exact signaling mechanism by which diabetic hyperglycemia regulates cardiac K+ channels remains elusive. Here, we show that acute hyperglycemia increases inward rectifier K+ current (IK1), but reduces the amplitude and inactivation recovery time of the transient outward K+ current (Ito) in mouse, rat, and rabbit myocytes. These changes were all critically dependent on intracellular O-GlcNAcylation. Additionally, IK1 amplitude and Ito recovery effects (but not Ito amplitude) were prevented by the Ca2+/calmodulin-dependent kinase II (CaMKII) inhibitor autocamtide-2-related inhibitory peptide, CaMKIIδ-knockout, and O-GlcNAc-resistant CaMKIIδ-S280A knock-in. Ito reduction was prevented by inhibition of protein kinase C (PKC) and NADPH oxidase 2 (NOX2)-derived reactive oxygen species (ROS). In mouse models of chronic diabetes (streptozotocin, db/db, and high-fat diet), heart failure, and CaMKIIδ overexpression, both Ito and IK1 were reduced in line with the downregulated K+ channel expression. However, IK1 downregulation in diabetes was markedly attenuated in CaMKIIδ-S280A. We conclude that acute hyperglycemia enhances IK1 and Ito recovery via CaMKIIδ-S280 O-GlcNAcylation, but reduces Ito amplitude via a NOX2-ROS-PKC pathway. Moreover, chronic hyperglycemia during diabetes and CaMKII activation downregulate K+ channel expression and function, which may further increase arrhythmia susceptibility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number71
JournalBasic Research in Cardiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • CaMKII
  • Diabetes
  • Hyperglycemia
  • Potassium channels
  • ROS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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