Global vs local control of cardiac alternans in a 1D numerical model of human ventricular tissue

Sanket Thakare, Joseph Mathew, Sharon Zlochiver, Xiaopeng Zhao, Elena G. Tolkacheva

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Cardiac alternans is a proarrhythmic state in which the action potential duration (APD) of cardiac myocytes alternate between long and short values and often occurs under conditions of rapid pacing of cardiac tissue. In the ventricles, alternans is especially dangerous due to the life-threatening risk of developing arrhythmias, such as ventricular fibrillation. Alternans can be formed in periodically paced tissue as a result of pacing itself. Recently, it has been demonstrated that this pacing-induced alternans can be prevented by performing constant diastolic interval (DI) pacing, in which DI is independent of APD. However, constant DI pacing is difficult to implement in experimental settings since it requires the real-time measurement of APD. A more practical way was proposed based on electrocardiograms (ECGs), which give an indirect measure of the global DI relaxation period through the TR interval assessment. Previously, we demonstrated that constant TR pacing prevented alternans formation in isolated Langendorff-perfused rabbit hearts. However, the efficacy of "local"constant DI pacing vs "global"constant TR pacing in preventing alternans formation has never been investigated. Thus, the purpose of this study was to implement an ECG-based constant TR pacing in a 1D numerical model of human ventricular tissue and to compare the dynamical behavior of cardiac tissue with that resulted from a constant DI pacing. The results showed that both constant TR and constant DI pacing prevented the onset of alternans until lower basic cycle length when compared to periodic pacing. For longer cable lengths, constant TR pacing was shown to exhibit greater control on alternans than constant DI pacing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number083123
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by the National Science Foundation under Grant Nos. 1662250 and 1661615.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Author(s).


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