Contractile dysfunctions in ATP-dependent K+ channel-deficient mouse muscle during fatigue involve excessive depolarization and Ca2+ influx through L-type Ca2+ channels

Carlo Cifelli, Louise Boudreault, Bing Gong, Jean-Philippe Bercier, Jean-Marc Renaud
Experimental Physiology 2008, 93 (10): 1126-38
Muscles deficient in ATP-dependent potassium (KATP) channels develop contractile dysfunctions during fatigue that may explain their apparently faster rate of fatigue compared with wild-type muscles. The objectives of this study were to determine: (1) whether the contractile dysfunctions, namely unstimulated force and depressed force recovery, result from excessive membrane depolarization and Ca2+ influx through L-type Ca2+ channels; and (2) whether reducing the magnitude of these two contractile dysfunctions reduces the rate of fatigue in KATP channel-deficient muscles. To reduce Ca2+ influx, we lowered the extracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]o) from 2.4 to 0.6 mM or added 1 microM verapamil, an L-type Ca2+ channel blocker. Flexor digitorum brevis (FDB) muscles deficient in KATP channels were obtained by exposing wild-type muscles to 10 microM glibenclamide or by using FDB from Kir6.2-/- mice. Fatigue was elicited with one contraction per second for 3 min at 37 degrees C. In wild-type FDB, lowered [Ca2+]o or verapamil did not affect the decrease in peak tetanic force and unstimulated force during fatigue and force recovery following fatigue. In KATP channel-deficient FDB, lowered [Ca2+]o or verapamil slowed down the decrease in peak tetanic force recovery, reduced unstimulated force and improved force recovery. In Kir6.2-/- FDB, the rate of fatigue became slower than in wild-type FDB in the presence of verapamil. The cell membrane depolarized from -83 to -57 mV in normal wild-type FDB. The depolarizations in some glibenclamide-exposed fibres were similar to those of normal FDB, while in other fibres the cell membrane depolarized to -31 mV in 80 s, which was also the time when these fibres supercontracted. It is concluded that: (1) KATP channels are crucial in preventing excessive membrane depolarization and Ca2+ influx through L-type Ca2+ channels; and (2) they contribute to the decrease in force during fatigue.

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