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1: Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2003 Jun;284(6):H2114-23. Epub 2003 Feb 06. Related Articles, Links
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Development of electrical activity in cardiac myocyte aggregates derived from mouse embryonic stem cells.

Banach K, Halbach MD, Hu P, Hescheler J, Egert U.

Institut fur Neurophysiologie, Universitat zu Koln, Germany.

Embryonic stem cells differentiate into cardiac myocytes, repeating in vitro the structural and molecular changes associated with cardiac development. Currently, it is not clear whether the electrophysiological properties of the multicellular cardiac structure follow cardiac maturation as well. In long-term recordings of extracellular field potentials with microelectrode arrays consisting of 60 substrate-integrated electrodes, we examined the electrophysiological properties during the ongoing differentiation process. The beating frequency of the growing preparations increased from 1 to 5 Hz concomitant to a decrease of the action potential duration and action potential rise time. A developmental increase of the conduction velocity could be attributed to an increased expression of connexin43 gap junction channels. Whereas isoprenalin elicited a positive chronotropic response from the first day of spontaneous beating onward, a concentration-dependent negative chronotropic effect of carbachol only developed after approximately 4 days. The in vitro development of the three-dimensional cardiac preparation thus closely follows the development described for the mouse embryonic heart, making it an ideal model to monitor the differentiation of electrical activity in embryonic cardiomyocytes.

PMID: 12573993 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]