A nuclear magnetic resonance study of metabolism in the ferret heart during hypoxia and inhibition of glycolysis

J Physiol. 1985 Apr;361:185-204. doi: 10.1113/jphysiol.1985.sp015640.


31P nuclear magnetic resonance was used to measure the relative concentrations of phosphorus-containing metabolites in Langendorff-perfused ferret hearts. Intracellular concentrations of inorganic phosphate ([Pi]i), phosphocreatine ([PCr]i), ATP ([ATP]i) and H+ (pHi) were monitored under control conditions and while oxidative phosphorylation and/or glycolysis were prevented. Mechanical performance was assessed by recording the pressure developed in a balloon placed in the left ventricle. Oxidative phosphorylation was prevented either by replacement of O2 with N2 or by addition of cyanide. When the rate of oxidative phosphorylation was reduced by either method, developed pressure fell to a stable level of about 35% of control after 5 min. The pHi (control value 6.98) first increased to a peak of 7.07 after 2 min but then decreased to give a stable acidosis (pH 6.85). [PCr]i decreased rapidly to about 15% of the control value after 5 min whereas [ATP]i declined very slowly, reaching about 90% of the control value after 10 min. Reduction in the rate of glycolysis was achieved either (i) by removal of external glucose and depletion of glycogen stores by a long (1-2 h) period of stimulation or (ii) by removal of glucose and application of 2-deoxyglucose (1 mM) for 30-60 min. These procedures had only a small effect on pressure development, [ATP]i, [PCr]i and pHi. Measurements of lactate production showed that these procedures reduced the rate of glycolysis by a factor of about 10. When oxidative phosphorylation was prevented during periods when the rate of glycolysis was reduced, developed pressure fell to less than 5% of control after 5 min and there was a subsequent increase in resting pressure (hypoxic contracture). pHi (control value 7.03) first increased to a peak of 7.12 and then declined to about pH 7.00, but there was no subsequent acidosis. [PCr]i fell rapidly to about 10% of control after about 5 min while [ATP]i declined to about half of its control value over 10 min. It is concluded that (i) when oxidative phosphorylation alone is prevented, the changes in pHi can account for a substantial part of the changes in developed pressure. The increase in [Pi]i probably also contributes to the decline of developed pressure. (ii) When oxidative phosphorylation was prevented under conditions in which the rate of glycolysis was also reduced, the more pronounced decline in developed pressure which occurs within 5 min cannot be accounted for by pHi changes and is probably not explained by the rise in [Pi]i or by the moderate fall of [ATP]i.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Carnivora / metabolism*
  • Ferrets / metabolism*
  • Glycolysis / drug effects
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Myocardial Contraction
  • Myocardium / metabolism*
  • Oxidative Phosphorylation / drug effects
  • Phosphates / metabolism
  • Phosphocreatine / metabolism
  • Time Factors


  • Phosphates
  • Phosphocreatine
  • Adenosine Triphosphate