Restorative effect of epinephrine on the electrophysiologic properties of depressed human atrial tissue

Henry Gelband, Michael R. Rosen, Robert J. Myerburg, Harry L. Bush, Arthur L. Bassett, Brian F. Hoffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


The effects of epinephrine on the electrophysiologic properties of human right atrial tissue, obtained at cardiac surgery, were evaluated utilizing standard microelectrode techniques. In studies of electrophysiology, epinephrine had little effect on the resting membrane potential and transmembrane action potentials of normal atrial fibers. Epinephrine enhanced phase-4 depolarization and increased automaticity in normal fibers but hyperpolarized partially depolarized atrial fibers and decreased automaticity. The hyperpolarizing action of epinephrine resulted in a increase in action potential amplitude and dV/dt and enhanced conduction. Active force increased 40-230% in depressed tissues when exposed to epinephrine. Epinephrine-induced hyperpolarization of depressed atrial fibers may have a beneficial effect on atrial arrhythmias and depressed contractility encountered clinically.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)313-320
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Electrocardiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1977
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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