Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

OBJECTIVES: (i) to characterize the electrophysiological properties of the slowly activating delayed rectifier potassium current, i(Ks), defined as the 293b-sensitive current, during the action potential (AP) of rabbit sino-atrial node (SAN) pacemaker cells; (ii) to evaluate the contribution of i(Ks) to the pacemaker AP under physiological conditions and during beta-adrenergic stimulation. METHODS: Rabbit SAN pacemaker cells were studied using the perforated patch clamp technique in voltage-, AP- and current-clamp modes. RESULTS: Voltage-clamp findings. Block of i(Ks) by 293b is dose-dependent, with an IC(50) (half block) in rabbit SAN cells of 1.35 microM and an IC(80) (sub-maximal block) of 5 microM. Sub-maximal concentrations of 293b have no significant effects on long-lasting and transient inward calcium currents, i(Ca,L) and i(Ca,T), inward hyperpolarization activated current, i(f), and transient outward current, i(to). AP-clamp experiments. The 293b-sensitive current activates near the peak of the SAN pacemaker action potential, reaches a mean maximal current density of 1.0+/-0.3 pA/pF (n=8, cell capacitances 27 to 62 pF, mean 35+/-4.0 pF) during late repolarization, and inactivates towards the end of repolarization. Additionally, in two smaller cells (cell capacitances 15 and 23 pF), no discernible 293b-sensitive current component was detected. Current-clamp data. In spontaneously beating SAN cells under control conditions, sub-maximal block of i(Ks) by 5 microM 293b has negligible effects on action potential characteristics and does not change average cycle length (n=11). In contrast, after pre-treatment with 10 nM isoprenaline to mimic beta-adrenergic stimulation, cells showed a 293b-induced depolarization of maximum diastolic potential by 2.2+/-1%, a decrease in diastolic depolarization rate by 9.9+/-4%, and a slowing of late action potential repolarization by 28.7+/-10.2%, resulting in a prolongation of spontaneous cycle length by 9.8+/-3.0% (P<0.05, n=10; for all parameters). CONCLUSION: Our findings suggest that in rabbit SAN: (i) i(Ks) is activated during the normal pacemaker AP; (ii) the contribution of i(Ks) to beating rate is small under control conditions; and (iii) i(Ks) contributes significantly to spontaneous pacemaker rate during beta-adrenergic stimulation.

Type

Journal article

Journal

Cardiovasc Res

Publication Date

01/2002

Volume

53

Pages

68 - 79

Keywords

Action Potentials, Adrenergic beta-Agonists, Animals, Chromans, Dose-Response Relationship, Drug, Isoproterenol, Patch-Clamp Techniques, Potassium Channel Blockers, Potassium Channels, Inwardly Rectifying, Rabbits, Sinoatrial Node, Sulfonamides