Multitrack system for superfusing isolated cardiac myocytes

Lois Jane Heller, David E. Mohrman, Juline A. Smith, Kendall B Wallace

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


A new system for studying mechanical activity of freshly isolated cardiac myocytes from up to four experimental groups simultaneously is described. Suspensions of cardiac myocytes isolated from adult rat hearts were drawn into microhematocrit capillary tubes, which were then mounted in parallel fashion between two four-channel tubing manifolds placed on the movable stage of an inverted microscope. Within a few minutes, cells settled and attached to the bottom of the tubes and then could be superfused with various test solutions. The system allowed for electrical field stimulation, rapid changes in bathing solutions, control of temperature, and simulation of ischemia and reperfusion with measurements of the effects of such interventions on both populations of cells (low power survey) and individual myocytes (high power). Myocyte responses to these various interventions are described. The primary advantage of this system is the ability to conduct experiments on cardiac myocytes isolated concurrently from multiple experimental groups at the same time and under identical conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1872-H1878
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number5 53-5
StatePublished - May 1 2003


  • Caffeine contracture
  • Electrical field stimulation
  • Myocyte shortening
  • Simulated ischemia and reperfusion
  • Temperature effects
  • Test chambers


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