Calcium and cardiomyopathies

Subcell Biochem. 2007;45:523-37. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4020-6191-2_20.


Regulation of Calcium (Ca) cycling by the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) underlies the control of cardiac contraction during excitation-contraction (E-C) coupling. Moreover, alterations in E-C coupling occurring in cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure are characterized by abnormal Ca-cycling through the SR network. A large body of evidence points to the central role of: a) SERCA and its regulator phospholamban (PLN) in the modulation of cardiac relaxation; b) calsequestrin in the regulation of SR Ca-load; and c) the ryanodine receptor (RyR) Ca-channel in the control of SR Ca-release. The levels or activity of these key Ca-handling proteins are altered in cardiomyopathies, and these changes have been linked to the deteriorated cardiac function and remodeling. Furthermore, genetic variants in these SR Ca-cycling proteins have been identified, which may predispose to heart failure or fatal arrhythmias. This chapter concentrates on the pivotal role of SR Ca-cycling proteins in health and disease with specific emphasis on their recently reported genetic modifiers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Calcium / physiology*
  • Calcium Signaling
  • Calcium-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Calcium-Binding Proteins / physiology
  • Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases / physiology
  • Calsequestrin / genetics
  • Cardiomyopathies / genetics
  • Cardiomyopathies / physiopathology*
  • Heart Failure / genetics
  • Heart Failure / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Mutation
  • Receptors, Adrenergic, beta / physiology
  • Ryanodine Receptor Calcium Release Channel / physiology
  • Sarcoplasmic Reticulum / physiology
  • Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Calcium-Transporting ATPases / genetics
  • Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Calcium-Transporting ATPases / physiology


  • Calcium-Binding Proteins
  • Calsequestrin
  • Receptors, Adrenergic, beta
  • Ryanodine Receptor Calcium Release Channel
  • phospholamban
  • Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Calcium-Transporting ATPases
  • Calcium