The MMI is reliable, acceptable and feasible. The evidence base for its validity against future medical council exams is growing with reports from longitudinal investigations. However, further research is needed for its acceptability in different cultural context and validity against future clinical behaviours.
RyR2(S/S) atria show reduced levels of Nav1.5 expression and Na(+) channel function. Reduced Na(+) channel function was also observed in WT atria, following acute increases in [Ca(2+)]i. Taken together, the results suggest that raised [Ca(2+)]i produces both acute and chronic inhibition of Na(+) channel function. These findings may help explain the relationship between altered Ca(2+) homeostasis, CV, and the maintenance of common arrhythmias such as atrial fibrillation.
We associate altered ventricular myocardial CV potentially resulting in arrhythmogenic substrate with arrhythmic properties associated with genetic RyR2 alterations for the first time.
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Catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia (CPVT) predisposes to ventricular arrhythmia due to altered Ca2+ homeostasis and can arise from ryanodine receptor (RyR2) mutations including RyR2-P2328S. Previous reports established that homozygotic murine RyR2-P2328S (RyR2S/S) hearts show an atrial arrhythmic phenotype associated with reduced action potential (AP) conduction velocity and sodium channel (Nav1.5) expression. We now relate ventricular arrhythmogenicity and slowed AP conduction in RyR2S/S hearts to connexin-43 (Cx43) and Nav1.5 expression and Na+ current (INa). Stimulation protocols applying extrasystolic S2 stimulation following 8 Hz S1 pacing at progressively decremented S1S2 intervals confirmed an arrhythmic tendency despite unchanged ventricular effective refractory periods (VERPs) in Langendorff-perfused RyR2S/S hearts. Dynamic pacing imposing S1 stimuli then demonstrated that progressive reductions of basic cycle lengths (BCLs) produced greater reductions in conduction velocity at equivalent BCLs and diastolic intervals in RyR2S/S than WT, but comparable changes in AP durations (APD90) and their alternans. Western blot analyses demonstrated that Cx43 protein expression in whole ventricles was similar, but Nav1.5 expression in both whole tissue and membrane fractions were significantly reduced in RyR2S/S compared to wild-type (WT). Loose patch-clamp studies similarly demonstrated reduced INa in RyR2S/S ventricles. We thus attribute arrhythmogenesis in RyR2S/S ventricles resulting from arrhythmic substrate produced by reduced conduction velocity to downregulated Nav1.5 reducing INa, despite normal determinants of repolarization and passive conduction. The measured changes were quantitatively compatible with earlier predictions of linear relationships between conduction velocity and the peak INa of the AP but nonlinear relationships between peak INa and maximum Na+ permeability.
This article is part of a themed section on Spotlight on Small Molecules in Cardiovascular Diseases. To view the other articles in this section visit http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bph.v175.8/issuetoc.
We explored for relationships between SCN5A haploinsufficiency, implicated in clinical arrhythmogenicity, and right ventricular (RV) conduction disorders in Langendorff-perfused, male and female, and young (3 months) and old (>12 month old) Scn5a+/− and wild type (WT) hearts. The investigated conditions of genotype, age, and sex affected latencies but not repolarization time courses of RV monophasic action potentials. This prompted examination of the patterns of RV epicardial activation, its dispersion, and their interrelationships as possible arrhythmic mechanisms using a 64-channel, multi-electrode array. Mean ventricular activation times (T*MEAN), spatial dispersions (D*S) between recording channels/cardiac cycle, and maximum activation times (T*MAX) representing the slowest possible conduction in any given heart were all higher in old male Scn5a+/− compared with young male and old female Scn5a+/− and old male WT. Temporal dispersions (D*T) of recording channels were similarly higher in old male Scn5a+/− compared with old male WT. All groupings of D*T, D*S, and T*MAX nevertheless linearly correlated with T*MEAN, with indistinguishable slopes. The variates explored thus influence D*T, D*S, and T*MAX through actions on T*MEAN. These findings in turn correlated with increased levels of fibrosis in young male, young female, and old male Scn5a+/− compared with the corresponding WTs. We thus demonstrate for the first time independent and interacting effects of genotype, age, and sex on epicardial conduction and its dispersions at least partially attributable to fibrotic change, resulting in the greatest effects in old male Scn5a+/− in an absence of alterations in repolarization time courses. This directly implicates altered depolarization in the clinical arrhythmogenicity associated with Scn5a+/−.
Arrhythmias arise from breakdown of orderly action potential (AP) activation, propagation and recovery driven by interactive opening and closing of successive voltage-gated ion channels, in which one or more Na+ current components play critical parts. Early peak, Na+ currents (I Na) reflecting channel activation drive the AP upstroke central to cellular activation and its propagation. Sustained late Na+ currents (I Na-L) include contributions from a component with a delayed inactivation timecourse influencing AP duration (APD) and refractoriness, potentially causing pro-arrhythmic phenotypes. The magnitude of I Na-L can be analysed through overlaps or otherwise in the overall voltage dependences of the steady-state properties and kinetics of activation and inactivation of the Na+ conductance. This was useful in analysing repetitive firing associated with paramyotonia congenita in skeletal muscle. Similarly, genetic cardiac Na+ channel abnormalities increasing I Na-L are implicated in triggering phenomena of automaticity, early and delayed afterdepolarisations and arrhythmic substrate. This review illustrates a wide range of situations that may accentuate I Na-L. These include (1) overlaps between steady-state activation and inactivation increasing window current, (2) kinetic deficiencies in Na+ channel inactivation leading to bursting phenomena associated with repetitive channel openings and (3) non-equilibrium gating processes causing channel re-opening due to more rapid recoveries from inactivation. All these biophysical possibilities were identified in a selection of abnormal human SCN5A genotypes. The latter presented as a broad range of clinical arrhythmic phenotypes, for which effective therapeutic intervention would require specific identification and targeting of the diverse electrophysiological abnormalities underlying their increased I Na-L.
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