Differential effects of phosphodiesterase-sensitive and -resistant analogs of cAMP on initiation of contraction in cardiac ventricular myocytes

Gregory R. Ferrier, Susan E. Howlett

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    Amplitudes of cardiac contractions initiated by Ca2+-induced Ca2+ release (CICR) are proportional to the magnitude of Ca2+ current (ICa-L). However, large contractions accompanied by little inward current have been reported in some but not all studies in which cells were dialyzed with different analogs of cAMP. This study compares the effects of different phosphodiesterase (PDE)-resistant and PDE-sensitive analogs of cAMP on CICR, and investigates whether cAMP sensitizes CICR so that small currents induce large contractions. Experiments were conducted in voltage-clamped guinea pig ventricular myocytes at 37°C, with different analogs of cAMP added to patch pipette solutions. With PDE sensitive Tris-cAMP, contraction-voltage relations were bell-shaped and proportional to ICa-L. In contrast, dialysis with PDE-resistant dibutyryl-cAMP resulted in sigmoidal contraction-voltage relations and large responses with little inward current. Similarly, in cells loaded with fura-2, large Ca2+ transients were elicited with little inward current in cells dialyzed with PDE-resistant but not PDE-sensitive cAMP. However, large transients were observed with PDE-sensitive cAMP when PDE was inhibited with 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine. When the amplitude of ICa-L was varied by partial block with Cd2+, or by partial inactivation, CICR remained proportional to the amplitude of ICa-L. Thus, cAMP altered the relationship between Ca2+ transients and membrane potential but did not sensitize conventional CICR coupled to ICa-L. Our results show that effects of different analogs of cAMP on contraction depend on the PDE resistance of the analog tested. Furthermore, PDE can play a major role in modulating cardiac contraction by altering the relationship between membrane potential and Ca2+ release.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)166-178
    Number of pages12
    JournalJournal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2003


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