Emerging role of hydrogen sulfide-microRNA crosstalk in cardiovascular diseases

Bryan T. Hackfort, Paras K. Mishra

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Despite an obnoxious smell and toxicity at a high dose, hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is emerging as a cardioprotective gasotransmitter. H2S mitigates pathological cardiac remodeling by regulating several cellular processes including fibrosis, hypertrophy, apoptosis, and inflammation. These encouraging findings in rodents led to initiation of a clinical trial using a H2S donor in heart failure patients. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms by which H2S mitigates cardiac remodeling are not completely understood. Empirical evidence suggest that H2S may regulate signaling pathways either by directly influencing a gene in the cascade or interacting with nitric oxide (another cardioprotective gasotransmitter) or both. Recent studies revealed that H2S may ameliorate cardiac dysfunction by upor downregulating specific microRNAs. MicroRNAs are noncoding, conserved, regulatory RNAs that modulate gene expression mostly by translational inhibition and are emerging as a therapeutic target for cardiovascular disease (CVD). Few microRNAs also regulate H2S biosynthesis. The inter-regulation of microRNAs and H2S opens a new avenue for exploring the H2S-microRNA crosstalk in CVD. This review embodies regulatory mechanisms that maintain the physiological level of H2S, exogenous H2S donors used for increasing the tissue levels of H2S, H2S-mediated regulation of CVD, H2S-microRNAs crosstalk in relation to the pathophysiology of heart disease, clinical trials on H2S, and future perspectives for H2S as a therapeutic agent for heart failure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H802-H812
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2016


  • Apoptosis
  • Clinical trial
  • Fibrosis
  • Heart failure
  • Inflammation
  • MicroRNAs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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