Phase relationship between alternans of early and late phases of ventricular action potentials

Linyuan Jingf, Anuj Agarwalf, Sonam Chourasia, Abhijit Patwardhan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Alternans of early phase and of duration of action potential (AP) critically affect dispersion of refractoriness through their influence on conduction and repolariza-tion. We investigated the phase relationship between the two alternans and its effect on conduction. Methods and Results: Transmembrane potentials recorded from ventricles of eight swine and three canines during paced activation intervals of <300 ms were used to quantify alternans of maximum rate of depolarization (|dv/dt| max) and of action potential duration (APD). Incidence of APD alternans was 62 and 76% in swine and canines. Alternans ofAPD was frequently accompanied with alternans of |d v/dt| max. Of these, 4 and 26% were out of phase in swine and canines, i.e., low |dv/dt |max preceded long APD. Computer simulations show that out of phase alternans attenuate variation of wavelength and thus minimize formation of spatially discordant alternans. Conclusion:The spontaneous switching of phase relationship between alternans of depolarization and repolarization suggests that mechanisms underlying these alternans may operate independent of each other. The phase between these alternans can critically impact spatial dispersion of refractoriness and thus stability of conduction, with the in phase relation promoting transition from concord to discord while out of phase preventing formation of discord.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberArticle 190
JournalFrontiers in Physiology
Volume3 JUN
StatePublished - 2012


  • Alternans of depolarization
  • Alternans of repolarization
  • Arrhythmia
  • Maximum rate of depolarization
  • Wavelength oscillation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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