SR Ca loading in cardiac muscle preparations based on rapid-cooling contractures

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The influence of rest periods on twitches and rapid-cooling contractures (RCCs) was examined in trabeculae from rabbit, rat, guinea pig, and frog ventricle and rabbit atrium. RCCs were used as a relative index of sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca content. After increasing rest duration, rabbit and guinea pig ventricles exhibit a decline of both twitch force and RCC force (rest decay). When stimulation is resumed, both twitches and RCCs recover to steady-state levels. The SR (and cells) in these tissues may lose Ca during quiescence and become reloaded with progressive stimulation. Rat ventricle and rabbit atrium exhibited an increase in both twitch and RCC tension as a function of rest duration (rest potentiation). Resumption of stimulation resulted in parallel declines of both twitch and RCC tension approaching steady state. Thus stimulation in rat ventricle and rabbit atrium may lead to a net Ca loss from the SR (and the cell) and quiescence may lead to replenishment of cellular Ca. This major difference in Ca metabolism in mammalian cardiac muscles might be due to a fundamental difference in SR properties or, alternativly, different sarcolemmal transport properties (e.g., action potential configuration, Na-pump). After long rest intervals in rabbit and guinea pig ventricle, RCCs return toward their steady-state value in considerably fewer beats than does twitch tension. This implies that something other than SR refilling is responsible for the slow phase of twitch recovery after rest. In rabbit ventricle increasing frequency or extracellular Ca concentration ([Ca](o)) generally increases both twitch and RCC tension. However, decreasing [Ca](o) (to 0.2 mM) does not decrease RCCs much despite a dramatic decline in twitch tension (suggesting low twitch tension despite a loaded SR). Rapid rewarming during an RCC usually results in a transient rise in tension (or rewarming 'spike'), which is due to a warming-induced increase in myofilament Ca sensitivity. Differences in rewarming spikes among the tissues studied suggest differences in temperature effects on myofilament Ca sensitivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Physiology


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