Prevention of ischemic ventricular tachycardia of Purkinje origin: Role for α2-adrenoceptors in Purkinje?

David O. Arnar, Dezhi Xing, Hon Chi Lee, James B. Martins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Recent studies have shown the presence of postjunctional α2-adrenergic receptors on canine Purkinje fibers but not muscle cells. Stimulation of these receptors results in prolongation of the action potential duration and the Purkinje relative refractory period. We studied the effect of α2-adrenergic agonists on inducible ischemic ventricular tachycardia (VT) of both Purkinje fiber and myocardial origin. Open-chest dogs in whom VT was induced with extra-stimuli after occlusion of the anterior descending coronary artery were studied. A mapping system, incorporating Purkinje signals, characterized the mechanisms of VT. The α2-adrenergic agonists clonidine (0.5-4.0 μg/kg) or UK 14,304 (4-5 μg/kg) versus saline were given intravenously after reproducibility of inducible sustained monomorphic VT had been demonstrated. Eighteen dogs were given clonidine, eleven of which had focal Purkinje VT. Of those 11 dogs, clonidine blocked VT induction in 9 (81.9%) and rendered VT nonsustained in 1 (9.1%), and VT remained inducible in i dog (9.1%), although this was focal midmyocardial VT only. In the seven dogs with VT of myocardial origin, six (85.6%) remained inducible with clonidine, whereas one dog (14.4%) had only nonsustained VT after clonidine. Of the six dogs, UK 14,304 blocked VT induction in four (66.6%) and rendered VT nonsustained in one (16.7%), and VT remained inducible in one dog (16.7%). In four dogs with VT of myocardial origin, VT remained inducible. In the eight control dogs that were given saline, focal Purkinje VT was repeatedly inducible. Pharmacological stimulation of postjunctional α2-adrenoceptors on Purkinje fibers may selectively prevent induction of VT of Purkinje fiber origin in the ischemic canine ventricle.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1182-H1190
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number3 49-3
StatePublished - 2001


  • Autonomics
  • Ischemia
  • Mapping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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