Isovolumic loading prevents atrophy of the heterotopically transplanted rat heart.
Heterotopically (infrarenal) transplanted cardiac isografts are histologically normal, spontaneously beating, hemodynamically unloaded hearts that undergo rapid and predictable atrophy. To study the factors that regulate cardiac growth we examined the effect of left ventricular (LV) isovolumic balloon placement on the weight, in vitro protein synthesis rate, and LV RNA content of the transplanted heart. At day 0 the donor LV weight was 367 +/- 8 mg, which decreased to 226 +/- 14 mg (p less than 0.001) after transplantation. Isovolumic loading with a latex balloon (volume, 111 +/- 10 microliters) significantly increased the LV weight of the transplanted heart to 397 +/- 13 mg when compared with that of the unloaded heart 14 days after surgery and prevented the atrophy when compared with the LV weight at day 0. Sham-loaded transplants had LV weights of 256 +/- 17 mg, which did not differ from the LV weight of unloaded transplanted hearts. Protein synthesis rates (nmol lysine/LV/hr) and total LV RNA and LV 18S RNA content were significantly greater in the balloon-loaded hearts when compared with the unloaded isografts and returned to levels similar to those measured in the in situ hearts. The ability of isovolumic loading of the LV to prevent atrophy via increased protein synthesis and the maintenance of LV RNA in the heterotopically transplanted heart further supports the important role of cardiac work in the regulation of cardiac growth.
- Copyright © 1991 by American Heart Association