Journal of Comparative Physiology B

, Volume 180, Issue 5, pp 645–651 | Cite as

Bioelectrical activity in the heart of the lugworm Arenicola marina

  • Denis V. Abramochkin
  • Natalia V. Tennova
  • Elizaveta E. Hirazova
  • Anna V. Pizgareva
  • Vladislav S. Kuzmin
  • Galina S. Sukhova
Original Paper

Abstract

Standard microelectrode technique was used to study electrical activity of the isolated heart of the polychaete annelid, Arenicola marina. Typical pacemaker activity with slow diastolic depolarization was observed in all recordings. The average maximum diastolic potential (−58.4 ± 3.2 mV), the average amplitude of the action potential (28.7 ± 4.7 mV) and the average total duration of the action potential (2,434 ± 430 ms) were determined. There has been no gradient of automaticity observed in our studies, which suggests that all regions of the Arenicola heart could possess pacemaker functions. Acetylcholine (ACh) produced a concentration dependent (5 × 10−8–5 × 10−5 M) increase of the beating rate via increase in the rate of the diastolic depolarization. ACh (5 × 10−5 M) increased beating rate by 2.5-fold compared to the control rate. A stronger action of ACh resulted in depolarization, block of action potential generation and contracture of the heart. The non-hydrolysable ACh analog carbacholine (10−8–10−6 M) produced similar effects. All effects of ACh and carbacholine were abolished by 5 × 10−6 M atropine. d-Tubocurarine (5 × 10−5 M) did not significantly alter effects of ACh or carbacholine. Epinephrine (10−8–10−6 M) caused the slowing of pacemaker activity and marked decrease of action potential duration. 10−6 M epinephrine produced complete cardiac arrest. The effects of epinephrine were not significantly altered by the β-blocker propranolol (5 × 10−6 M). The β-agonist isoproterenol (10−7–10−5 M) and the α-agonist xylometazoline (10−6–10−5 M) did not produce significant effects. Thus, cholinergic effects in the Arenicola heart are likely to be mediated via muscarinic receptors, while the nature of adrenergic effects needs further investigation.

Keywords

Annelida Lugworm Arenicola Heart Action potential Acetylcholine 

Abbreviations

ACh

Acetylcholine

AP

Action potential

APD50

Action potential duration to 50% of repolarization

References

  1. Boyett MR, Honjo H, Kodama I (2000) The sinoatrial node, a heterogeneous pacemaker structure. Cardiovasc Res 47:658–687CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Calabrese RL, Maranto AR (1986) Cholinergic action on the heart of the leech, Hirudo medicinalis. J Exp Biol 125:205–224PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Coraboeuf E (1969) Resistance measurements by means of microelectrodes in cardiac tissues. In: Lavallee M, Schanne OF, Habert NC (eds) Glass microelectrodes. Wiley, New York, pp 224–271Google Scholar
  4. Hertel W, Pass G (2002) An evolutionary treatment of the morphology and physiology of circulatory organs in insects. Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol 133(3):555–575CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Jensen H (1974) Ultrastructural studies of the hearts in Arenicola marina L. (Annelida: Polychaeta). Cell Tiss Res 156:127–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Maranto AR, Calabrese RL (1984a) Neural control of the hearts in the leech, Hirudo medicinalis. I.Anatomy, electrical coupling, and innervations of the hearts. J Comp Physiol A 154:367–380CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Maranto AR, Calabrese RL (1984b) Neural control of the hearts in the leech, Hirudo medicinalis. II.Myogenic activity and its control by heart motor neurons. J Comp Physiol A 154:381–391CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Maranto AR, Calabrese RL (1984c) Neural control of the hearts in the leech, Hirudo medicinalis. III.Regulation of myogenicity and muscle tension by heart accessory neurons. J Comp Physiol A 154:393–406CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Martynova MG, Chaga OY (2002) Heart and the peritoneal cover of the gut sinus in the polychaete Arenicola marina: an ultrastructural and autoradiographic study. J Morphol 254:312–319CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. McFarlane JE, Ting-Ya Fong K (1972) Differences in the effect of drugs on young and old hearts of the house cricket, Acheta domesticus (L.). Comp Gen Pharmacol 3:271–276CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Pitman RM (1971) Transmitter substances in insects: a review. Comp Gen Pharmacol 2(7):347–371CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Prosser CL (1950) The electrocardiogram of Arenicola. Biol Bull 98(3):255–257CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Prosser CL, Zimmerman GL (1943) Effects of drugs on the hearts of Arenicola and Lumbricus. Physiol Zool 16:77–83Google Scholar
  14. Prosser CL, Brown FA, Bishop DW, Jahn TL, Wulff VJ (1951) Comparative animal physiology. Saunders, PhiladelphiaGoogle Scholar
  15. Sakurai A, Yamagishi H (2000) Graded neuromuscular transmission in the heart of the isopod crustacean Ligia exotica. J Exp Biol 203:1447–1457PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Shigeto N (1970) Excitatory and inhibitory actions of acetylcholine on hearts of oyster and mussel. Am J Physiol 218(6):1773–1779PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Tennova NV, Sukhova GS, Udel’nov MG (1982) The effect of stretch and blood pressure on rhythmic activity of the heart in the lugworm Arenicola marina. Zh Evol Biokhim Fiziol 18(5):460–464Google Scholar
  18. West TC (1955) Ultramicroelectrode recording from the cardiac pacemaker. Pharmacol Exp Ther 115(3):283–290Google Scholar
  19. Wollemann M, Rozsa SK (1975) Effects of serotonin and catecholamines on the adenylate cyclase of molluscan heart. Comp Biochem Physiol 51C:63–66Google Scholar
  20. Yamagishi H (2003) Aminergic modulation of the myogenic heart in the branchiopod crustacean Triops longicaudatus. Zool Sci 20:841–846CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Denis V. Abramochkin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Natalia V. Tennova
    • 1
  • Elizaveta E. Hirazova
    • 1
  • Anna V. Pizgareva
    • 1
  • Vladislav S. Kuzmin
    • 1
  • Galina S. Sukhova
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Human and Animal PhysiologyMoscow State UniversityMoscowRussia
  2. 2.MoscowRussia

Personalised recommendations