Author(s): Scoote M, Williams AJ
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Abstract The cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium release channel, commonly referred to as the ryanodine receptor, is a key component in cardiac excitation-contraction coupling, where it is responsible for the release of calcium from the sarcoplasmic reticulum. As our knowledge of the ryanodine receptor has advanced an appreciation that this key E-C coupling component may have a role in the pathogenesis of human cardiac disease has emerged. Heart failure and arrhythmia generation are both pathophysiological states that can result from deranged excitation-contraction coupling. Evidence is now emerging that hyperphosphorylation of the cardiac ryanodine receptor is an important event in chronic heart failure, contributing to impaired contraction and the generation of triggered ventricular arrhythmias. Furthermore the therapeutic benefits of beta blockers in heart failure appear to be partly explained through a reversal of this phenomenon. Two rare inherited arrhythmogenic conditions, which can cause sudden death in children, have also been shown to result from mutations in the cardiac ryanodine receptor. These conditions, catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia and arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (subtype 2), further implicate the ryanodine receptor as a potentially arrhythmogenic substrate and suggest that this channel may offer a new therapeutic target in the treatment of both cardiac arrhythmias and heart failure.
This article was published in Cardiovasc Res
and referenced in Anatomy & Physiology: Current Research