Heptanol triggers cardioprotection via mitochondrial mechanisms and mitochondrial potassium channel opening in rat hearts

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Aim:To investigate mechanisms behind heptanol (Hp)-induced infarct size reduction and in particular if protection by pre-treatment with Hp is triggered through mitochondrial mechanisms.Methods:Langendorff perfused rat hearts, isolated mitochondria and isolated myocytes were used. Infarct size, mitochondrial respiration, time to mitochondrial permeability transition pore (MPTP) opening and AKT and glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (GSK-3β) phosphorylation were examined.Results:Pre-treatment with Hp reduced infarct size from 29.7 ± 3.4% to 12.6 ± 2.1%. Mitochondrial potassium channel blockers 5-hydroxy decanoic acid (5HD) blocking mitoKATP and paxilline (PAX) blocking mitoKCa abolished cardioprotective effect of Hp (Hp + 5HD 36.7 ± 2.9% and Hp + PAX 40.2 ± 2.8%). Hp significantly reduced respiratory control ratio in both subsarcolemmal and interfibrillar mitochondria in a dose-dependent manner (0.5–5.0 mm). The ADP oxygen ratio was also significantly reduced by Hp (2 mm). Laser scanning confocal microscopy of tetramethylrhodamine-loaded isolated rat myocytes using line scan mode showed that Hp increased time to MPTP opening. Western blot analysis showed that pre-treatment with Hp increased phosphorylation of AKT and GSK-3β before ischaemia and after 30 min of global ischaemia.Conclusion:Pre-treatment with Hp protects the heart against ischaemia-reperfusion injury. This protection is most likely mediated via mitochondrial mechanisms which initiate a signalling cascade that converges on inhibition of opening of MPTP.

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