Abstract 331: HCN Overexpression in Failing Heart Possibly Contributes to Ventricular Arrhythmias
Accumulating evidence suggests increased ventricular expression of hyperpolarization-activated cation channels (HCNs) in hypertrophied and failing hearts contributes to the induction of arrhythmias. In this study, we addressed the capacity of HCNs blockade to prevent lethal arrhythmias associated with heart failure.
Transgenic mice expressing a dominant-negative mutant of neuron-restrictive silencer factor in a cardiac-specific manner (dnNRSF-Tg) exhibited dilated cardiomyopathy and sudden arrythmic death with an increase in ventricular HCNs expression, which are potentially responsible for the observed lethal arrhythmias. Ivabradine (Iva), a specific HCN channel inhibitor, significantly improved the survival among dnNRSF-Tg mice. Though echocardiographic, hemodynamic, and histological analyses showed no significant difference between Iva and control, ECG telemetric monitoring showed the significant reduction of arrhythmias in dnNRSF-Tg mice treated with Iva (VT; Iva 19/h, control 92/h ; p<0.05), suggesting that Iva improved the survival by preventing lethal arrhythmias.
We also found that the transgenic mice overexpressing HCN2 specifically in the heart (HCN2-Tg) are susceptible to ventricular arrhythmias induced by chronic isoproterenol infusion. In isolated ventricular myocytes from HCN2-Tg, but not in those from wild type mice, isoproterenol induced abnormal spontaneous action potentials, which were suppressed with Iva.
Our findings suggest that increased ventricular expression of HCN channels possibly contributes to the ventricular arrhythmias, and HCN channels blockade may represent a new and effective means of preventing sudden arrhythmic death in patients with heart failure.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.