Dysregulation of Ionic Homeostasis: Relevance for Cardiac Arrhythmias
The action potential is formed by the interaction of various sarcolemmal ionic currents. These currents are produced by the flow of ions which is driven by ionic electrochemical gradient across the sarcolemma and is mediated by ion channels. Alterations in ion channel function or trans-sarcolemmal ionic electrochemical gradients lead to alteration in ionic current and action potential which can cause arrhythmias. Extracellular and intracellular concentration of some ions can modulate the gating of ion channels. Therefore, the maintenance of the correct intra- and extracellular ionic concentrations and trans-sarcolemmal ionic gradients (ionic homeostasis) is essential for the electrical function of the heart. Alterations in ionic homeostasis can lead to profound alterations in cardiac electrophysiology and arrhythmias. In this chapter will review how dysregulation of ionic homeostasis can lead to arrhythmias with a particular emphasis on channelopathies.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Claire Hopton is funded by a BHF Clinical Research Training Fellowship. Miriam Lettieri is funded by a BHF Studentship.
Conflict of Interest
Claire Hopton declares that she has no conflict of interest. Luigi Venetucci declares that he has no conflict of interest. Miriam Lettieri declares that she has no conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.