It is well known that cardiac troponin C (cTnC) regulates the association of force-generating myosin cross-bridges. We report here evidence for an additional role for cTnC. This hypothesis states that Ca2+ binds more strongly to cTnC when force-generating myosin cross-bridges are attached to actin and that removal of this bound Ca2+ accelerates the dissociation of force-generating myosin cross-bridges. Intact Fura-2-loaded rat papillary muscles and skinned (permeabilized) ventricular preparations were used. The preparations were mounted in the Guth Muscle Research System which is capable of measuring simultaneously fluorescence and force in response to length perturbations. All mechanical perturbations of muscle length (isotonic shortening, quick stretches and releases, and length vibrations) which cause dissociation of force-generating myosin cross-bridges during a twitch resulted in Ca2+ being released from troponin as judged from changes in the Ca2+ transients (Fura-2 (340/380) fluorescence ratio). Thus dissociation of force-generating myosin cross-bridges cause Ca2+ to be released from cTnC. Conversely, it would be expected that removal of strongly bound Ca2+ from cTnC would result in an increase in the rate of dissociation of force-generating myosin cross-bridges. To test this hypothesis actomyosin ATPase (NADH fluorescence change) and isometric force were measured in skinned cardiac preparations. The ratio of the ATPase/Force is proportional to the rate constant (g(app)) for the dissociation of force-generating myosin cross-bridges. The data showed that decreasing the amount of Ca2+ bound to cTnC in skinned cardiac fibers caused an increase in the ratio of ATPase/Force, the rate of dissociation (g(app)) of force-generating myosin cross-bridges.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology