Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Could starving the heart make it resistant to damage?

Date:
April 9, 2012
Source:
Methodist Hospital, Houston
Summary:
Heart cells starved of nutrients are less likely to be damaged during periods of decreased blood flow and sudden influxes of blood, known as ischemia and reperfusion, and are also less likely to get out of synch with their cellular neighbors, the damaging phenomenon called arrhythmia.

Heart cells starved of nutrients are less likely to be damaged during periods of decreased blood flow and sudden influxes of blood, known as ischemia and reperfusion, and are also less likely to get out of synch with their cellular neighbors, the damaging phenomenon called arrhythmia.

Related Articles


Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center scientists learned that starved heart cells maintain normal calcium cycling and basic mitochondrial function far longer than non-starved cells during periods of extreme stress.

The findings, which will appear in an upcoming issue of Cell Calcium, add to a growing body of scientific evidence that suggests the consumption of less energy -- while maintaining balanced nutrition -- can benefit tissues by enhancing cell performance and reducing DNA damage associated with the aging process.

"We are connecting several loose facts about calorie restriction and heart function, in particular, arrhythmias," said cardiac electrophysiologist Miguel Valderrábano, M.D., the study's principal investigator. "We have shown why nutrient restriction protects the cells from ischemia and reperfusion. Normal function means less risk of arrhythmias, during which heart cells stop communicating properly with each other, and which can cause further damage, even sudden cardiac death."

Heart disease remains the number one cause of death in the U.S. and around the world. About 400,000 cases of sudden cardiac death occur annually in the U.S. Coronary artery heart disease, which causes ischemia and reperfusion arrhythmias, is the leading cause.

The scientists studied cultured heart cells originally derived from young rats. The cells were grown in a 2 cm-by-2 cm monolayer, to allow ease of study. The researchers mapped intracellular calcium ions and mitochondrial membrane potential with the help of fluorescent tags. Ischemia was simulated by placing a 1.8 cm-by-1.8 cm cover slip over the center of the cell culture, which limited oxygen and nutrient flow to that portion of the culture. Reperfusion was simulated by the removal of the cover slip.

All cells were raised for two to three days in a blood-serum medium containing glucose. One group of cells was subjected to a low-nutrient medium for 24 hours prior to the ischemia-reperfusion experiments.

Nutrient-restricted cells were more likely to maintain normal mitochondrial action potentials (the capacity to produce energy) and normal calcium cycling across the cellular membrane (required for normal, synchronized heart beats) than cells that had access to nutrients all along.

Nutrient-restricted cells maintained normal pulsing about eight minutes longer than unrestricted cells during ischemia, and nutrient-restricted cells maintained mitochondrial action potentials and calcium cycling activity throughout simulated ischemia and reperfusion events, compared to unrestricted cells, which lost significant action potentials during reperfusion.

"These experiments are not yet telling us whether we can emulate the effects of nutrient restriction in humans to lessen the damage of ischemia-reperfusion," Valderrábano said. "But we have shown one way nutrient restriction may be acting to reduce heart tissue damage, a subject of interest to many laboratories."

Sufen Wang and Jiexiao Chen of the Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center also contributed to this work. It was supported by The Methodist Hospital Research Institute and continuing funding from the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Methodist Hospital, Houston. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Sufen Wang, Jiexiao Chen, Miguel Valderrábano. Nutrient restriction preserves calcium cycling and mitochondrial function in cardiac myocytes during ischemia and reperfusion. Cell Calcium, 2012; DOI: 10.1016/j.ceca.2012.02.009

Cite This Page:

Methodist Hospital, Houston. "Could starving the heart make it resistant to damage?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 April 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120409103255.htm>.
Methodist Hospital, Houston. (2012, April 9). Could starving the heart make it resistant to damage?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 26, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120409103255.htm
Methodist Hospital, Houston. "Could starving the heart make it resistant to damage?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120409103255.htm (accessed November 26, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

AFP (Nov. 24, 2014) — Madagascar said Monday it is trying to contain an outbreak of plague -- similar to the Black Death that swept Medieval Europe -- that has killed 40 people and is spreading to the capital Antananarivo. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
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