BACKGROUND: Consecutive treatment of normal heart with a high dose of isoproterenol and adenosine (Iso/Ade treatment), confers strong protection against ischaemia/reperfusion injury. In preparation for translation of this cardioprotective strategy into clinical practice during heart surgery, we further optimised conditions for this intervention using a clinically-relevant dose of Iso and determined its cardioprotective efficacy in hearts isolated from a model of surgically-induced heart failure.
METHODS: Isolated Langendorff-perfused rat hearts were treated sequentially with 5 nM Iso and 30 μM Ade followed by different durations of washout prior to 30 min global ischaemia and 2 hrs reperfusion. Reperfusion injury was assessed by measuring haemodynamic function, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release and infarct size. Protein kinase C (PKC) activity and glycogen content were measured in hearts after the treatment. In a separate group of hearts, Cyclosporine A (CsA), a mitochondria permeability transition pore (MPTP) inhibitor, was added with Iso/Ade. Failing hearts extracted after 16 weeks of ligation of left coronary artery in 2 months old rats were also subjected to Iso/Ade treatment followed by ischaemia/reperfusion.
RESULTS: Recovery of the rate pressure product (RPP) in Iso/Ade-treated hearts was significantly higher than in controls. Thus in Iso/Ade treated hearts with 5 nM Iso and no washout period, RPP recovery was 76.3±6.9% of initial value vs. 28.5±5.2% in controls. This was associated with a 3 fold reduction in LDH release irrespective to the duration of the washout period. Hearts with no washout of the drugs (Ade) had least infarct size, highest PKC activity and also showed reduced glycogen content. Cardioprotection with CsA was not additive to the effect of Iso/Ade treatment. Iso/Ade treatment conferred significant protection to failing hearts. Thus, RPP recovery in failing hearts subjected to the treatment was 69.0±16.3% while in Control hearts 19.7±4.0%. LDH release in these hearts was also 3 fold lower compared to Control.
CONCLUSIONS: Consecutive Iso/Ade treatment of normal heart can be effective at clinically-relevant doses and this effect appears to be mediated by glycogen depletion and inhibition of MPTP. This intervention protects clinically relevant failing heart model making it a promising candidate for clinical use.