Mimicking the cardiac cycle in intact cardiomyocytes using diastolic and systolic force clamps; measuring power output
Velden, J. van der
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A single isolated cardiomyocyte is the smallest functional unit of the heart. Yet, all single isolated cardiomyocyte experiments have been limited by the lack of proper methods that could reproduce a physiological cardiac cycle. We aimed to investigate the contractile properties of a single cardiomyocyte that correctly mimic the cardiac cycle.By adjusting the parameters of the feedback loop, using a suitably engineered feedback system and recording the developed force and the length of a single rat cardiomyocyte during contraction and relaxation, we were able to construct force-length (FL) relations analogous to the pressure-volume (PV) relations at the whole heart level. From the cardiac loop graphs, we obtained, for the first time, the power generated by one single cardiomyocyte.Here, we introduce a new approach that by combining mechanics, electronics, and a new type optical force transducer can measure the FL relationship of a single isolated cardiomyocyte undergoing a mechanical loop that mimics the PV cycle of a beating heart.