Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Heart Attack In A Laboratory Dish

Date:
May 10, 2001
Source:
Netherlands Organization For Scientific Research
Summary:
NWO researchers at Utrecht University have given heart muscle cells a heart attack in the laboratory. This allowed them to observe clearly the change that takes place in the cell membrane during an attack and how the change sometimes leads to the death of the cell.

NWO researchers at Utrecht University have given heart muscle cells a heart attack in the laboratory. This allowed them to observe clearly the change that takes place in the cell membrane during an attack and how the change sometimes leads to the death of the cell.

Related Articles


In a healthy cell, one of the components of the membrane, the phospholipids, are asymmetrically distributed across the two layers of the surrounding shell. During a (simulated) heart attack, however, and immediately after it, this asymmetrical distribution is partly lost. The researchers discovered that the absolute number of lipids increased in the outer layer of the membrane because they moved from the inner to the outer layer. This imbalance in phospholipid content probably plays a major role in the damage to the heart muscle cell and its death. It is possible that the quantity of calcium has something to do with changes in the original asymmetry, given that during a heart attack, the concentration of calcium ions in the heart muscle cell increases. The calcium ions can in turn produce the changes in the distribution of lipids.

Besides the blockage, the research team also studied the second phase of a heart attack, reperfusion, when the blood flow is restored. If this happens quickly enough, the tissue can be saved, but otherwise the asymmetrical distribution of the cell membrane phospholipids is lost and the imbalance in phospholipid content becomes more pronounced. Reactive oxygen causes damage to the fatty acid tails of the lipids. If it takes too long for the blood flow to be restored, or if it fails to do so at all, the muscle cell dies and scar tissue is formed.

The results of the research, financed by NWO, clarify why the heart muscle cells are damaged during a heart attack, but they do not yet make it possible to develop a treatment for the problem. This will require further research into just what happens in the lipids.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Netherlands Organization For Scientific Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Netherlands Organization For Scientific Research. "Heart Attack In A Laboratory Dish." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 May 2001. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/05/010509083032.htm>.
Netherlands Organization For Scientific Research. (2001, May 10). Heart Attack In A Laboratory Dish. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/05/010509083032.htm
Netherlands Organization For Scientific Research. "Heart Attack In A Laboratory Dish." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/05/010509083032.htm (accessed December 22, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, December 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Touch-Free Smart Phone Empowers Mobility-Impaired

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A touch-free phone developed in Israel enables the mobility-impaired to operate smart phones with just a movement of the head. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Earthworms Provide Cancer-Fighting Bacteria

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) Polish scientists isolate bacteria from earthworm intestines which they say may be used in antibiotics and cancer treatments. Suzannah Butcher reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Existing Chemical Compounds Could Revive Failing Antibiotics, Says Danish Scientist

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Dec. 21, 2014) A team of scientists led by Danish chemist Jorn Christensen says they have isolated two chemical compounds within an existing antipsychotic medication that could be used to help a range of failing antibiotics work against killer bacterial infections, such as Tuberculosis. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hugging It Out Could Help You Ward Off A Cold

Hugging It Out Could Help You Ward Off A Cold

Newsy (Dec. 21, 2014) Carnegie Mellon researchers found frequent hugs can help people avoid stress-related illnesses. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins