Influence of Infrasound Exposure on the Whole L-type Calcium Currents in Rat Ventricular Myocytes
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This study was designed to examine the effect of infrasound exposure (5 Hz at 130 dB) on whole-cell L-type Ca2+ currents (WLCC) in rat ventricular myocytes and the underlying mechanism(s) involved. Thirty-two adult Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to infrasound exposure and control groups. [Ca2+]i, WLCC, mRNA expression of the a1c subunit of L-type Ca2+ channels (LCC), and SERCA2 protein were examined on day 1, 7, and 14 after initiation of infrasound exposure. Fluo-3/AM fluorescence and the laser scanning confocal microscope techniques were used to measure [Ca2+]i in freshly isolated ventricular myocytes. The Ca2+ fluorescence intensity (FI), denoting [Ca2+]i in cardiomyocytes, was significantly elevated in a time-dependent manner in the exposure groups. There was a significant increase in WLCC in the 1-day group and a further significant increase in the 7- and 14-day groups. LCC mRNA expression measured by RT-PCR revealed a significant rise in the 1-day group and a significant additional rise in the 7- and 14-day groups compared with control group. SERCA2 expression was significantly upregulated in the 1-day group followed by an overt decrease in the 7- and 14-day groups. Prolonged exposure of infrasound altered WLCC in rat cardiomyocytes by shifting the steady-state inactivation curves to the right (more depolarized direction) without altering the slope and biophysical properties of ICa,L. Taken together, our data suggest that changes in [Ca2+]I levels as well as expression of LCC and SERCA2 may contribute to the infrasound exposure-elicited cardiac response.