Inhomogeneity of action potential waveshape assists frequency entrainment of cardiac pacemaker cells

SL Cloherty, NH Lovell, BG Celler, S Dokos

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5 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we have employed ionic models of sinoatrial node cells to investigate the synchronization of a pair of coupled cardiac pacemaker cells from central and peripheral regions of the sinoatrial node. The free-running cycle length of the cell models was perturbed using two independent techniques and the minimum coupling conductance required to achieve frequency entrainment was used to assess the relative ease with which various cell pairs achieve entrainment. The factors effecting entrainment were further investigated using single-cell models paced with an artificial biphasic coupling current. Our simulation results suggest that dissimilar cell types, those with largely different upstroke velocities entrain more easily, that is, they require less coupling conductance to achieve 1:1 frequency entrainment. We, therefore, propose that regional variation in action-potential waveshape within the sinoatrial node assists frequency synchronization in vivo.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1108-1115
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2001
Externally publishedYes

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