Inositol 1, 4, 5-Triphosphate Receptors and Human Left Ventricular Myocytes
Background—Little is known concerning the function of inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate receptors (IP3Rs) in the adult heart experimentally. Moreover, whether these Ca2+ release channels are present and play a critical role in human cardiomyocytes remains to be defined. IP3Rs may be activated following Gαq-protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) stimulation affecting Ca2+ cycling, enhancing myocyte performance and, potentially, favoring an increase in the incidence of arrhythmias.
Methods and Results—IP3R function was determined in human left ventricular (LV) myocytes and this analysis was integrated with assays in mouse myocytes to identify the mechanisms by which IP3Rs influence the electrical and mechanical properties of the myocardium. We report that IP3Rs are expressed and operative in human LV myocytes. Following GPCR activation, Ca2+ mobilized from the sarcoplasmic reticulum via IP3Rs contributes to the decrease in resting membrane potential, prolongation of the action-potential, and occurrence of early after-depolarizations. Ca2+ transient amplitude and cell shortening are enhanced, and extra-systolic and dysregulated Ca2+ elevations and contractions become apparent. These alterations in the electromechanical behavior of human cardiomyocytes are coupled with increased isometric twitch of the myocardium and arrhythmic events, suggesting that GPCR activation provide inotropic reserve, which is hampered by electrical instability and contractile abnormalities. Additionally, our findings support the notion that increases in Ca2+ load by IP3Rs promote Ca2+ extrusion by forward mode Na+/Ca2+ exchange, an important mechanism of arrhythmic events.
Conclusions—Thus, the GPCR/IP3R axis modulates the electromechanical properties of the human myocardium and its propensity to develop arrhythmias.
- Received March 21, 2013.
- Revision received June 26, 2013.
- Accepted July 18, 2013.