Ventricular arrhythmogenesis following slowed conduction in heptanol-treated, Langendorff-perfused mouse hearts

J Physiol Sci. 2012 Mar;62(2):79-92. doi: 10.1007/s12576-011-0187-2. Epub 2012 Jan 5.


Arrhythmogenic effects of slowed action potential conduction produced by the gap junction and sodium-channel inhibitor heptanol (0.1-2 mM) were explored in Langendorff-perfused mouse hearts. Monophasic action potential recordings showed that 2 mM heptanol induced ventricular tachycardia in the absence of triggered activity arising from early or after-depolarizations during regular 8 Hz pacing and programmed electrical stimulation (PES). It also increased activation latencies and ventricular effective refractory periods (VERPs), but did not alter action potential duration (APD), thereby reducing local critical intervals for re-excitation given by APD(90) - VERP. Bipolar electrogram recordings showed that 2 mM heptanol increased electrogram duration (EGD) and ratios of EGDs obtained at the longest to those obtained at the shortest S1S2 intervals studied during PES, suggesting increased dispersion of conduction velocities. These findings show, for the first time in the mouse heart, that slowed conduction induces reversible arrhythmogenic effects despite repolarization abnormalities expected to reduce arrhythmogenicity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / drug effects
  • Animals
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / chemically induced*
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / physiopathology*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Electrophysiological Phenomena
  • Female
  • Heart Conduction System / drug effects
  • Heart Conduction System / physiopathology
  • Heart Ventricles / drug effects
  • Heart Ventricles / physiopathology
  • Heptanol / administration & dosage
  • Heptanol / toxicity*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, 129 Strain
  • Perfusion
  • Refractory Period, Electrophysiological / drug effects
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / chemically induced
  • Tachycardia, Ventricular / physiopathology


  • Heptanol