AuthorsS. Wall, J. Guccione, M. Ratcliffe and J. Sundnes
TitleElectromechanical Feedback With Reduced Cellular Connectivity Alters Electrical Activity in an Infarct Injured Left Ventricle - a Finite Element Model Study
Afilliation, Scientific Computing, Scientific Computing
Project(s)Center for Biomedical Computing (SFF)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Date PublishedJan

Myocardial infarction (MI) significantly alters the structure and function of the heart. As abnormal strain may drive heart failure and the generation of arrhythmias, we used computational methods to simulate a left ventricle with an MI over the course of a heartbeat to investigate strains and their potential implications to electrophysiology. We created a fully coupled finite element model of myocardial electromechanics consisting of a cellular physiological model, a bidomain electrical diffusion solver, and a nonlinear mechanics solver. A geometric mesh built from magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measurements of an ovine left ventricle suffering from a surgically induced anteroapical infarct was used in the model, cycled through the cardiac loop of inflation, isovolumic contraction, ejection, and isovolumic relaxation. Stretch-activated currents were added as a mechanism of mechanoelectric feedback. Elevated fiber and cross fiber strains were observed in the area immediately adjacent to the aneurysm throughout the cardiac cycle, with a more dramatic increase in cross fiber strain than fiber strain. Stretch-activated channels decreased action potential (AP) dispersion in the remote myocardium while increasing it in the border zone. Decreases in electrical connectivity dramatically increased the changes in AP dispersion. The role of cross fiber strain in MI-injured hearts should be investigated more closely, since results indicate that these are more highly elevated than fiber strain in the border of the infarct. Decreases in connectivity may play an important role in the development of altered electrophysiology in the high-stretch regions of the heart.

Citation KeySimula.simula.544