Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Heart condition: Arrhythmia culprit caught in action

Date:
February 17, 2013
Source:
University of British Columbia
Summary:
Using powerful X-rays, researchers have reconstructed a crime scene too small for any microscope to observe -- and caught the culprit of arrhythmia in action.

Powerful X-rays reveal the tiny "crime scene" of one of arrhythmia's culprits.
Credit: Van Petegem Lab, UBC

Using powerful X-rays, University of British Columbia researchers have reconstructed a crime scene too small for any microscope to observe -- and caught the culprit of arrhythmia in action.

Related Articles


Characterized by the heart beating too fast, too slow or inconsistently, arrhythmias may cause a decrease of blood flow to the brain and body, resulting in heart palpitation, dizziness, fainting, or even death.

Presented February 18 at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Boston, the 3D animated model reveals for the first time how gene mutations affect the crucial pathway in heart muscle cells that controls its rhythm.

"Our heart runs on calcium," says UBC molecular biologist Filip Van Petegem. "Every heart beat is preceded by calcium ions rushing into heart muscle cells."

"Then, a special protein opens the pathway for calcium to be released from compartments within these cells, and in turn initiates the contraction."

Mutations to the gene that forms this protein have been linked to arrhythmia and sudden cardiac deaths in otherwise healthy people.

"Reconstructing the pathway and its dynamic motion enabled us to see the process in action," says Van Petegem. "We found that the mutations destabilize the pathway's structure, causing calcium to be released prematurely.

"Finding a way to stabilize the pathway could prevent these deadly conditions and save lives."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of British Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of British Columbia. "Heart condition: Arrhythmia culprit caught in action." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 February 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130217134214.htm>.
University of British Columbia. (2013, February 17). Heart condition: Arrhythmia culprit caught in action. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130217134214.htm
University of British Columbia. "Heart condition: Arrhythmia culprit caught in action." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130217134214.htm (accessed November 28, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, November 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Newsy (Nov. 27, 2014) — A recent test of a prototype Ebola vaccine generated an immune response to the disease in subjects. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
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
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) — Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. 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