Thyroid Hormones and Cardiac Function

  • Ofer Binah
  • Irit Rubinstein
  • Bella Felzen
  • Yechiel Sweed
  • Sela Mager
Part of the Developments in Cardiovascular Medicine book series (DICM, volume 94)


Thyroid hormones have profound effects on growth, development, and metabolism of virtually all tissues of higher organisms. Both thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine (T3) have been shown to induce major effects on cell replication and differentiation, calorigenesis and O2 consumption, stimulation of enzyme activity, beta-adrenergic responsiveness, and production and secretion of various hormones. As our main interest is in the heart, we will restrict ourselves to issues related to cardiac effects of thyroid hormones. The major changes in cardiac function produced by hyperthyroidism in humans and in experimental animals include marked increases in cardiac output, resting heart rate, and left ventricular ejection fraction, whereas hypothyroid patients have reduced cardiac output, resting heart rate, stroke volume and contractility [1]. These alterations have been attributed both to changes in the peripheral circulation and to direct inotropic and chronotropic effects on the heart. More specifically, the hyperthyroid myocardium is characterized by a decrease in the isometric time to peak tension, an increased shortening velocity and relaxation time, an increased sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca2+ pumping rate, an elevated actin and Ca2+-myosin ATPase activity, and a high percentage of myosin isoenzyme V1, the fast form of the enzyme.


Thyroid Hormone Cycle Length Action Potential Duration Cardiac Glycoside Thyroid Hormone Level 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Morkin, E., Flink, I.L., and Goldman, S. 1983. Biochemical and physiologic effects of thyroid hormones on cardiac performance. Prog. Cardiovasc. Dis. 25:435–464.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Binah, O., Arieli, R., Beck, R., et al. 1987 Ventricular electrophysiological properties: is interspecies variability related to the thyroid state? Am. J. Physiol. 252:H1265–H1274.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Binah, O., Rubinstein, I., and Gilat, E. 1987. Effects of thyroid hormone on the action potential and membrane currents of guinea pig ventricular myocytes. Pflugers Arch. 409:214–216.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Freedberg, A.F., Papp, J.G., and Vaughan Williams, E.M. 1970. The effect of altered thyroid state on atrial intracellular potentials. J. Physiol. (Lond.) 207:357–369.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Sharp, N.A., Neel, D.S., and Parsons, R.L. 1985. Influence of thyroid hormone level on the electrical and mechanical performance of rabbit papillary muscle. J. Mol. Cell Cardiol. 17:119–132.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Repke, K., Est, M., and Portius, H.J. 1965. Uber die spercies unter-schiede in der digitalis-empfindlichkeit. Biochem. Phramacol. 14:1785–1802.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Ku, D.D., Akera, T., Tobin, T., and Brody, T.M. 1976. Comperative species studies on the effect of monovalent cations and ouabain on cardiac Na+, K+-adenosine triphosphatase and contractile force. J. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther. 197:458–469.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Asano, Y., Liberman, U.A., and Edelman, I.S. 1976. Relationships between Na+-dependent respiration and Na++K+-adenosine triphosphatase activity in rat skeletal muscle. J. Clin. Invest. 57:368–379.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Curfman, G.D., Crowley, T.J., and Smith, T.W. 1977. Thyroid-induced alterations in myocardial sodium and potassium-activated adenosine triphosphatase monovalent cation active transport and cardiac glycoside binding. J. Clin. Invest. 59:586–590.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Felzen, B. and Binah, O. Interspecies variability in the myocardial responsiveness to cardiac glycosides: possible relationships to the thyroid state, submitted for publication.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Hamill, O.P., Marty, A., Neher, E., et al. 1981. Improved patch-clamp techniques for high-resolution current recording from cells and cell-free membrane patches. Pflugers Arch. 391:85–100.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston/Dordrecht/London 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ofer Binah
  • Irit Rubinstein
  • Bella Felzen
  • Yechiel Sweed
  • Sela Mager

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations