Conduction between isolated rabbit Purkinje and ventricular myocytes coupled by a variable resistance

Academic Article


  • Conduction at the Purkinje-ventricular junction (PVJ) demonstrates unidirectional block under both physiological and pathophysiological conditions. Although this block is typically attributed to multidimensional electrotonic interactions, we examined possible membrane-level contributions using single, isolated rabbit Purkinje (P) and ventricular (V) myocytes coupled by an electronic circuit. When we varied the junctional resistance (R(j)) between paired V myocytes, conduction block occurred at lower R(j) values during conduction from the smaller to larger myocyte (115 ± 59 MΩ) than from the larger to smaller myocyte (201 ± 51 MΩ). In Purkinje- ventricular myocyte pairs, however, block occurred at lower Rj values during P-to-V conduction (85 ± 39 MΩ) than during V-to-P conduction (912 ± 175 MΩ), although there was little difference in the mean cell size. Companion computer simulations, performed to examine how the early plateau currents affected conduction, showed that P-to-V block occurred at lower R(j) values when the transient outward current was increased or the calcium current was decreased in the model P cell. These results suggest that intrinsic differences in phase 1 repolarization can contribute to unidirectional block at the PVJ.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Huelsing DJ; Spitzer KW; Cordeiro JM; Pollard AE
  • Volume

  • 274
  • Issue

  • 4 43-4