Myocardial Na,K-ATPase: Clinical aspects

Keld Kjeldsen*

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

    Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftReviewForskningpeer review


    The specific binding of digitalis glycosides to Na,K-ATPase is used as a tool for Na,K-ATPase quantification with high accuracy and precision. In myocardial biopsies from patients with heart failure, total Na,K-ATPase concentration is decreased by around 40%; a correlation exists between a decrease in heart function and a decrease in Na,K-ATPase concentration. During digitalization, around 30% of remaining pumps are occupied by digoxin. Myocardial Na,K-ATPase is also influenced by other drugs used for the treatment of heart failure. Thus, potassium loss during diuretic therapy has been found to reduce myocardial Na,K-ATPase, whereas angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors may stimulate Na,K pump activity. Furthermore, hyperaldosteronism induced by heart failure has been found to decrease Na,K-ATPase activity. Accordingly, treatment with the aldosterone antagonist, spironolactone, may also influence Na,K-ATPase activity. The importance of Na,K pump modulation with heart disease, inhibition in digitalization and other effects of medication should be considered in the context of sodium, potassium and calcium regulation. It is recommended that digoxin be administered to heart failure patients who, after institution of mortality-reducing therapy, still have heart failure symptoms, and that the therapy be continued if symptoms are revealed or reduced. Digitalis glycosides are the only safe inotropic drugs for oral use that improve hemodynamics in heart failure. An important aspect of myocardial Na,K pump affection in heart disease is its influence on extracellular potassium (Ke) homeostasis. Two important aspects should be considered: potassium handling among myocytes, and effects of potassium entering the extracellular space of the heart via the bloodstream. It should be noted that both of these aspects of Ke homeostasis are affected by regulatory aspects, eg, regulation of the Na,K pump by physiological and pathophysiological conditions, as well as by medical treatments. Digitalization has been shown to affect both parameters. Furthermore, in experimental animals, potassium loading and depletion are found to significantly affect Ke handling. The effects of potassium depletion are of special interest because this condition often occurs in patients treated with diuretics. In human congenital long QT syndrome caused by mutations in genes coding for potassium channels, exercise and potassium depletion are well known for their potential to elicit arrhythmias and sudden death. There is a need for further evaluation of the dynamic aspects of potassium handling in the heart, as well as in the periphery. It is recommended that resting plasma potassium be maintained at around 4 mmol/L.

    Sider (fra-til)131-133
    Antal sider3
    TidsskriftExperimental and Clinical Cardiology
    Udgave nummer3
    StatusUdgivet - 1 dec. 2003


    Udforsk hvilke forskningsemner 'Myocardial Na,K-ATPase: Clinical aspects' indeholder.