PubMed 22461438

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Nav1.5 , Slo1

Title: Nonlinearity between action potential alternans and restitution, which both predict ventricular arrhythmic properties in Scn5a+/- and wild-type murine hearts.

Authors: Gareth D K Matthews, Laila Guzadhur, Andrew Grace, Christopher L-H Huang

Journal, date & volume: J. Appl. Physiol., 2012 Jun , 112, 1847-63

PubMed link:

Electrocardiographic QT- and T-wave alternans, presaging ventricular arrhythmia, reflects compromised adaptation of action potential (AP) duration (APD) to altered heart rate, classically attributed to incomplete Na(v)1.5 channel recovery prior to subsequent stimulation. The restitution hypothesis suggests a function whose slope directly relates to APD alternans magnitude, predicting a critical instability condition, potentially generating arrhythmia. The present experiments directly test for such correlations among arrhythmia, APD alternans and restitution. Mice haploinsufficient in the Scn5a, cardiac Na(+) channel gene (Scn5a(+/-)), previously used to replicate Brugada syndrome, were used, owing to their established arrhythmic properties increased by flecainide and decreased by quinidine, particularly in right ventricular (RV) epicardium. Monophasic APs, obtained during pacing with progressively decrementing cycle lengths, were systematically compared at RV and left ventricular epicardial and endocardial recording sites in Langendorff-perfused Scn5a(+/-) and wild-type hearts before and following flecainide (10 μM) or quinidine (5 μM) application. The extent of alternans was assessed using a novel algorithm. Scn5a(+/-) hearts showed greater frequencies of arrhythmic endpoints with increased incidences of ventricular tachycardia, diminished by quinidine, and earlier onsets of ventricular fibrillation, particularly following flecainide challenge. These features correlated directly with increased refractory periods, specifically in the RV, and abnormal restitution and alternans properties in the RV epicardium. The latter variables were related by a unique, continuous higher-order function, rather than a linear relationship with an unstable threshold. These findings demonstrate a specific relationship between alternans and restitution, as well as confirming their capacity to predict arrhythmia, but implicate mechanisms additional to the voltage feedback suggested in the restitution hypothesis.