The Expression of B-Type Natriuretic Peptide After CaCl2-Induced Arrhythmias in Rats

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To investigate the patterns of B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) expression after arrhythmia, BNP was assessed at different time points (0 minute, 10 minutes, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 3 hours, and 6 hours) in CaCl2-induced arrhythmia in rats through various methods such as immunohistochemistry, Western blotting, quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Immunohistochemistry results showed that the expression of BNP in the endocardium was higher than that in the epicardium in rats undergoing sustained arrhythmias. The BNP-to-GAPDH (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase) ratios determined by Western blotting analysis revealed no change at 0 minute but increased at 10 minutes and reached the first peak (0.48 [0.03]) at 30 minutes. After a brief decline, the second peak was observed at 6 hours (0.54 [0.03]). Similar patterns of BNP messenger RNA expression were also observed by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. The plasma BNP concentrations did not change after initial bouts of cardiac arrhythmias but significantly increased 30 minutes after CaCl2 injections. The results demonstrate that arrhythmia causes an elevation of BNP in the myocardium and blood, and BNP messenger RNA increases in initial arrhythmia while its protein in myocardium and plasma does not; however, both of them were elevated after sustained arrhythmia. Such an elevated BNP expression, which is directly related to the severity and duration of the arrhythmias, may suggest the existence of fatal arrhythmia in sudden cardiac death.

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