Lysosomal Ca2+ flux modulates automaticity in ventricular cardiomyocytes and correlates with arrhythmic risk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Automaticity involves Ca2+ handling at the cell membrane and sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR). Abnormal or acquired automaticity is thought to initiate ventricular arrhythmias associated with myocardial ischemia. Ca2+ flux from mitochondria can influence automaticity, and lysosomes also release Ca2+. Therefore, we tested whether lysosomal Ca2+ flux could influence automaticity. We studied ventricular human-induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs), hiPSC 3D engineered heart tissues (EHTs), and ventricular cardiomyocytes isolated from infarcted mice. Preventing lysosomal Ca2+ cycling reduced automaticity in hiPSC-CMs. Consistent with a lysosomal role in automaticity, activating the transient receptor potential mucolipin channel (TRPML1) enhanced automaticity, and two channel antagonists reduced spontaneous activity. Activation or inhibition of lysosomal transcription factor EB (TFEB) increased or decreased total lysosomes and automaticity, respectively. In adult ischemic cardiomyocytes and hiPSC 3D EHTs, reducing lysosomal Ca2+ release also inhibited automaticity. Finally, TRPML1 was up-regulated in cardiomyopathic patients with ventricular tachycardia (VT) compared with those without VT. In summary, lysosomal Ca2+ handling modulates abnormal automaticity, and reducing lysosomal Ca2+ release may be a clinical strategy for preventing ventricular arrhythmias.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberpgad174
JournalPNAS Nexus
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2023. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of National Academy of Sciences. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


  • automaticity
  • calcium
  • cardiomyocytes
  • human-induced pluripotent stem cell
  • lysosome

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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