Effects of metabolic inhibition on conduction, Ca transients, and arrhythmia vulnerability in embryonic mouse hearts

Fuhua Chen, Carlos De Diego, Lai Hua Xie, Jun Hai Yang, Thomas S. Klitzner, James N. Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Developing myocardium is more dependent on glycolysis than adult myocardium, yet the effects of selectively inhibiting glycolysis versus oxidative phosphorylation on embryonic heart function have not been well characterized. Accordingly, we investigated how selective metabolic inhibition affects membrane voltage and intracellular Ca (Cai) transients in embryonic mouse hearts, including their susceptibility to arrhythmias. A total of 136 isolated embryonic mouse hearts were exposed to either 1) 2-deoxyglucose (2DG; 10 mM) or iodoacetate (IAA; 0.1 mM) with 10 mM pyruvate in place of glucose to selectively inhibit glycolysis or 2) the mitochondrial uncoupler protonophore carbonyl cyanide p-(trifluoromethoxy)phenylhydrazone (FCCP; 500 nM) with 10 mM glucose present to selectively inhibit oxidative phosphorylation. Using confocal imaging, we found that mitochondrial membrane potential monitored with tetramethylrhodamine methyl ester (200 nM) remained stable with 2DG or IAA but depolarized within 5 min after exposure to FCCP. IAA and FCCP decreased heart rate, inhibited Cai transient amplitude, shortened action potential duration at 80% repolarization (APD80), and prolonged atrioventricular conduction time to similar extents. Although 2DG decreased heart rate and Cai transient amplitude, it did not significantly affect APD80 and AV conduction time. In addition, spontaneous arrhythmias occurred in 77 of 136 embryonic hearts (57%) after exposure to IAA (28/53) or FCCP (49/83). There were no significant differences in the types or incidence of arrhythmias induced by IAA and FCCP. These data support the idea that both glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation play critical metabolic roles in regulating cardiac function in the embryonic mouse heart.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H2472-H2478
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2007
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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


  • Arrhythmias
  • Calcium transient
  • Embryonic heart development

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