Cytoplasm resistivity of mammalian atrial myocardium determined by dielectrophoresis and impedance methods

Christopher H. Fry, Samantha C. Salvage, Alessandra Manazza, Emmanuel Dupont, Fatima H. Labeed, Michael P. Hughes, Rita I. Jabr

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Many cardiac arrhythmias are caused by slowed conduction of action potentials, which in turn can be due to an abnormal increase of intracellular myocardial resistance. Intracellular resistivity is a linear sum of that offered by gap junctions between contiguous cells and the cytoplasm of the myocytes themselves. However, the relative contribution of the two components is unclear, especially in atrial myocardium, as there are no precise measurements of cytoplasmic resistivity, Rc. In this study, Rc was measured in atrial tissue using several methods: a dielectrophoresis technique with isolated cells and impedance measurements with both isolated cells and multicellular preparations. All methods yielded similar values for R c, with a mean of 138 ± 5 Ω·cm at 23°C, and a Q10 value of 1.20. This value is about half that of total intracellular resistivity and thus will be a significant determinant of the actual value of action potential conduction velocity. The dielectrophoresis experiments demonstrated the importance of including divalent cations (Ca 2+ and Mg2+) in the suspension medium, as their omission reduced cell integrity by lowering membrane resistivity and increasing cytoplasm resistivity. Accurate measurement of Rc is essential to develop quantitative computational models that determine the key factors contributing to the development of cardiac arrhythmias.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2287-2294
Number of pages8
JournalBiophysical Journal
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Dec 5 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics


Dive into the research topics of 'Cytoplasm resistivity of mammalian atrial myocardium determined by dielectrophoresis and impedance methods'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this