Mesenteric lymph from rats with thermal injury prolongs the action potential and increases Ca2+ transient in rat ventricular myocytes.

Atsuko Yatani, Da Zhong Xu, Song Jung Kim, Stephen F. Vatner, Edwin A. Deitch

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9 Scopus citations


Although gut-derived mesenteric lymph from animals with thermal injury appears to lead to myocardial contractile dysfunction, the cellular mechanisms remain unclear. We examined the direct effects of intestinal lymph on excitation-contraction coupling in rat ventricular myocytes. Lymph from rats receiving burn injury (burn lymph), but not from sham-burned rats, rapidly enhanced myocyte contraction and the amplitude of Ca2+ transient; the average percentage of shortening was increased from 5.5 +/- 0.3% to 10.5 +/- 0.9%. 90% and the Ca2+ transients increased by 80% +/- 20%. Burn lymph had no effect on the amplitude of L-type Ca2+ current (ICa) or the inward rectifier K+ current, but the transient outward K+ currents (Ito) were reduced significantly by burn lymph. Inhibition of Ito was not altered by an alpha1-adrenergic receptor (AR) antagonist, prazosin, indicating that the block was not mediated via alpha1-AR signaling pathway. Action potential (AP) duration, measured at 50% and 90% repolarization, was prolonged by burn lymph. Stimulation of myocytes with AP voltage-clamp waveforms derived from prolonged AP induced by burn lymph revealed a 1.7-fold increase in Ca2+ influx via ICa compared with the Ca2+ influx induced by control AP. Blocking of Ito by 4-aminopyridine prolonged AP duration and increased Ca2+ transients, mimicking the effects of burn lymph. Burn lymph did not affect Na+/Ca2+ exchange currents or caffeine-induced SR Ca2+ release. Thus, acute exposure of normal cardiac myocytes to burn lymph increases Ca2+ transients by a prolongation of AP as a result of a reduction of Ito with no intrinsic change in ICa or exchanger. The electrophysiological changes are similar to those that occur during compensated cardiac hypertrophy, suggesting a common mechanistic link between burn lymph- and hypertrophy-induced cardiac dysfunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)458-464
Number of pages7
JournalShock (Augusta, Ga.)
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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