© 2001

Excitation-Contraction Coupling and Cardiac Contractile Force


Part of the Developments in Cardiovascular Medicine book series (DICM, volume 237)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages iii-xxiv
  2. Donald M. Bers
    Pages 39-62
  3. Donald M. Bers
    Pages 63-100
  4. Donald M. Bers
    Pages 101-132
  5. Donald M. Bers
    Pages 133-160
  6. Donald M. Bers
    Pages 203-244
  7. Donald M. Bers
    Pages 273-331
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 333-427

About this book


How is the heartbeat generated? What controls the strength of contraction of heart muscle? What are the links between cardiac structure and function? How does our understanding of skeletal and smooth muscle and non-muscle cells influence our thinking about force development in the heart? Are there important species differences in how contraction is regulated in the heart? How do the new molecular data fit together in understanding the heart beat? What goes wrong in ischemia, hypertrophy, and heart failure? This book paints a modern `portrait' of how the heart works and in this picture the author shows a close-up of the structural, biochemical, and physiological links between excitation and contraction.
The author takes the reader through a series of important, interrelated topics with great clarity and continuity and also includes many useful illustrations and tables. The book starts by considering the cellular structures involved in excitation-contraction coupling and then described the characteristics of the myofilaments as the end effector of excitation-contraction coupling. A general scheme of calcium regulation is described and the possible sources and sinks of calcium are discussed in simple, but quantitative terms. The cardiac action potential and its many underlying currents are reviewed. Then the characteristics of some key calcium transport systems (calcium channels, sodium/calcium exchange and SR calcium uptake and release) are discussed in detail. This is then built into a more integrated picture of calcium regulation in succeeding chapters by detailed discussions of excitation-calcium coupling mechanisms (in skeletal, cardiac, and smooth muscle), the interplay between calcium regulatory processes, and finally mechanisms of cardiac inotropy, calcium overload, and dysfunction (e.g., ischemia, hypertrophy, and heart failure).
Excitation-Contraction Coupling and Cardiac Contractile Force &endash; Second Edition is an invaluable source of information for anyone who is interested in how the heart beat is controlled and especially suited for students of the cardiovascular system at all levels from medical/graduate students through senior investigators in related fields.


cardiovascular cardiovascular system cells heart heart muscle smooth muscle

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhysiologyLoyola University ChicagoMaywoodUSA

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Excitation-Contraction Coupling and Cardiac Contractile Force
  • Authors Donald Bers
  • Series Title Developments in Cardiovascular Medicine
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-0-7923-7157-1
  • Softcover ISBN 978-0-7923-7158-8
  • eBook ISBN 978-94-010-0658-3
  • Series ISSN 0166-9842
  • Edition Number 2
  • Number of Pages XXIV, 427
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Cardiology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Health & Hospitals
Internal Medicine & Dermatology


`Since the first edition of Excitation-Contraction Coupling and Cardiac Contractile Force was published 10 years ago, it has become a classic. The second edition is stunning. It retains the zest and compact form of the first edition, contains the wealth of information and analysis that has become the Bers' hallmark and is well written. It is easy and delightful to read.'
W. Jonathan Lederer (excerpted from the Introduction).
`This second edition of a now classical text is both extensively revised and up-to-date. The many illustrations, a large number of which are new to this edition, supplement a clearly written text that is filled with useful information. For those who seek a lucid, comprehensive and authoritative description of the interlocked systems that control the heart beat, I know of no other source that approaches Bers' Excitation-Contraction Coupling and Cardiac Contractile Force.'
Arnold M. Katz
`This book is a breath of fresh (and educated and thoughtful and well-organized) air Don Bers has produced a remarkably approachable and informative volume, clearly superior to others in this field. Active researchers should buy this book for themselves and their students.'
Laurence L. Brunton