Transthoracic echocardiography offers a noninvasive method for the evaluation of cardiac function in mice. A combination of ultrasound and Doppler imaging modalities can be used to obtain dimensional measurements of the heart and intracardiac blood flow, which together provide an assessment of cardiac systolic and diastolic performance.
1Development and Aging Program, The Sanford Burnham Institute for Medical Research, 2Cardiac Electrophysiology Group, Dept. of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, The Sanford Burnham Institute for Medical Research, 3Biology Department and Heart Institute, San Diego State University
We have developed a Semi-automated Optical Heartbeat Analysis method (SOHA) for analyzing high speed optical recordings from Drosophila, zebrafish and embryonic mouse hearts. We demonstrate the application of our methodology to the analysis of heart function in fruit fly and embryonic mouse hearts.
Standardized, comprehensive and fully quantitative testing of autonomic functions is described. The autonomic tests consist of evaluation of all three major autonomic domains including cardiovagal, adrenergic and sudomotor. The severity and distribution of dysautonomia is quantitated using Composite Autonomic Severity Scores.
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, The Ohio State University, 2Department of Biomedical Informatics, The Ohio State University, 3Comprehensive Wound Center, The Ohio State University, 4Department of Surgery, The Ohio State University
A dual-mode imaging system was developed for non-contact assessment of cutaneous tissue oxygenation and vascular function.
Measuring left ventricular pressure (LV) in embryonic and neonatal mice is described. Pressure is measured by inserting a needle connected to a fluid-filled transducer into the LV under ultrasound guidance. Care must be taken to maintain normal cardiac function during the experimental protocol.
1Department of Family and Community Medicine, Thomas Jefferson University, 2Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Biostatistics Division, Thomas Jefferson University, 3Department of Internal Medicine, Thomas Jefferson University
Capillaroscopy is a non-invasive, relatively inexpensive methodology for directly visualizing the microcirculation. The forearm blood flow technique provides accepted non-invasive measures of endothelial function.
A noninvasive procedure to assess endothelial function is demonstrated using the Endo-PAT 2000.
A cyclic pressure bioreactor capable of subjecting heart valve tissue to physiological and pathological pressure conditions has been designed. A LabVIEW program allows users to control pressure magnitude, amplitude and frequency. This device can be used to study the mechanobiology of heart valve tissue or isolated cells.
High-frequency High-resolution Echocardiography: First Evidence on Non-invasive Repeated Measure of Myocardial Strain, Contractility, and Mitral Regurgitation in the Ischemia-reperfused Murine Heart
High frequency Doppler ultrasound is a novel technology for assessing regional myocardial function. This work presents first evidence demonstrating applicability of this versatile imaging platform for the repeated measure of myocardial strain, dp/dt, and mitral regurgitation in the ischemia-reperfused (IR) murine heart.
Langendorff-mode isolated heart perfusion, in conjunction with 31P NMR spectroscopy, combines the fields of biochemistry and physiology into one experiment. The protocol allows for the dynamic measurement of high energy phosphate content and turnover in the heart while concurrently monitoring physiologic function. When performed correctly, this is a valuable technique in the assessment of cardiac energetics.
1Department of Public Health, Academic Medical Center - University of Amsterdam, 2Department of Epidemiology, Documentation and Health Promotion, Public Health Service of Amsterdam (GGD), 3Department of Biological Psychology, VU University, 4EMGO+ Institute, VU University Medical Center, 5Institute of Health Sciences, VU University, 6Department of Pediatrics, VU University Medical Center
Measurement of autonomic nervous system activity usually confines the researcher and participant to the laboratory, which may provide an intimidating environment to children. The VU University Ambulatory Monitoring System (VU-AMS) device can record cardiac autonomic control in any setting. The VU-AMS proved very amenable to testing in children.
Right Ventricular Systolic Pressure Measurements in Combination with Harvest of Lung and Immune Tissue Samples in Mice
1Department of Environmental Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, Tuxedo, 2Division of Allergy, Pulmonary, & Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, 3Division of Pulmonary Medicine, New York University School of Medicine
A specific and rapid protocol to simultaneously investigate right heart function, lung inflammation, and the immune response is described as a learning tool. Video and figures describe physiology and microdissection techniques in an organized team-approach that is adaptable to be used for small to large sized studies.
Tri-layered Electrospinning to Mimic Native Arterial Architecture using Polycaprolactone, Elastin, and Collagen: A Preliminary Study
1Department of Biomedical Engineering, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, Virginia Commonwealth University, 3Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, University Hospital of Geneva
The aim of this study was to mimic the native three layered architecture of the arterial wall. To accomplish this, electrospinning was employed with the use of a 3-1 (input-output) nozzle and blends of polycaprolactone, elastin, and collagen.
Reduction in Left Ventricular Wall Stress and Improvement in Function in Failing Hearts using Algisyl-LVR
This article describes procedures for implanting a novel hydrogel in failing hearts and quantifying its effect on left ventricular wall stress and function. These procedures have been successfully applied in dogs and humans.
We describe the protocol to perform a cardiac stress test induced by dobutamine and monitored by cardiac catheterization in normal mice. Also we show its application to unmask subclinical cardiac disease in high fat diet-induced obese mice.
This video demonstrates use of a rail-mounted high-frequency ultrasound probe to perform echocardiography on an anesthetized mouse. The methods describe both conventional two-dimensional and M-mode measurements of cardiac function in addition to newer, more powerful tools such as color Doppler, strain analysis, as well as general and targeted contrast imaging.
Fetal and perinatal death is a common feature when studying genetic alterations affecting cardiac development. High-frequency ultrasound imaging has improved 2-D resolution and can provide excellent information on early cardiac development and is an ideal method to detect the impact on cardiac structure and function prior to death.
This is a method to visualise leukocyte adhesion to the endothelium in harvested pressurised vessels. The technique enables studying vascular adhesion under shear flow with differing intraluminal pressures up to 200 mmHg thus mimic-ing the pathophysiological conditions of high blood pressure.
Here we describe a low-cost, rapid, controlled and uniform fixation procedure using 4% paraformaldehyde perfused via the vascular system: through the heart of the rat to obtain the best possible preservation of the brain.
We describe the isolation of neonatal cardiomyocytes and the preparation of the cells for encapsulation in fibrin hydrogel constructs for tissue engineering. We describe methods for analyzing the tissue engineered myocardium after the culture period including active force generated upon electrical stimulation and cell viability and immunohistological staining.
The CODA 8-Channel High Throughput Non-Invasive Blood Pressure system measures the blood pressure in up to 8 mice or rats simultaneously. This tail-cuff system uses Volume Pressure Recording (VPR) to measure the blood pressure by determining the tail blood volume.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging Quantification of Pulmonary Perfusion using Calibrated Arterial Spin Labeling
A MR imaging method to study the distribution of pulmonary blood flow under a variety of physiological conditions, in this case exposure to three different inspired oxygen concentrations: hypoxia, normoxia, and hyperoxia, is described. This technique utilizes human pulmonary physiology research techniques in an MR scanning environment.
We introduce an approach to evaluate the cytosolic Ca2+ concentration in isolated lymphatics to study Ca2+-dependent and Ca2+-sensitizing mechanisms of lymphatic smooth muscle contraction.
The presented method offers a way to detect functional effective cardiotropic autoantibodies in the plasma of patients with dilated cardiomyopathy, irrespective of the specific antigen, by analysing the impact of isolated patient immunoglobulin on cellular shortening and intracellular calcium transients in isolated rat cardiomyocytes.
A technique is described to quantify the in vivo physiological response of mammalian neurons during movement and correlate the physiology of the neuron with neuronal morphology, neurochemical phenotype and synaptic microcircuitry.
Tilt Testing with Combined Lower Body Negative Pressure: a "Gold Standard" for Measuring Orthostatic Tolerance
We describe a "gold standard" for evaluating orthostatic tolerance (OT) using tilt testing with combined lower body negative pressure (LBNP). This can be combined with non-invasive evaluations of cardiovascular reflex control. Normal and abnormal responses are defined.
1Julius L. Chambers Biomedical/Biotechnology Research Institute, North Carolina Central University, Durham, 2Department of Biology, North Carolina Central University, Durham, 3Department of Physiology & Pharmacology and Hypertension & Vascular Research Center, Wake Forest University School of Medicine
An automated myography method for force measurements in isolated mesenteric arteries is described. It employs a Mulvany-Halpern Auto Dual Wire Myograph 510A to determine responses to phenylephrine and extracellular calcium. The method allows consistent determination of isometric responses to agonists in small vessels of diameters of 60 - 300 μm, independently.
1Department of Basic Science and Craniofacial Biology, College of Dentistry, New York University, 2Department of Internal Medicine and Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Washington University in St. Louis, 3Veterans Affairs Medical Center, 4School of Dental Medicine, Department of Biochemistry, University of Pennsylvania-School of Medicine, 5 , Monell Chemical Senses Center, 6Monell Chemical Senses Center
Knowledge of molecular mechanisms underlying gustatory transduction has recently enjoyed significant advances, largely due to using animal models. However, the wide diversity in taste sensitivity and specificity among mammals warrants studies in human tissue. We describe a biopsy technique to collect living taste cells from the papillae on human tongue.
The objective is to monitor the mitochondrial redox state of isolated hearts within the context of physiologic preload and afterload pressures. A biventricular working rabbit heart model is presented. High spatiotemporal resolution fluorescence imaging of NADH is used to monitor the mitochondrial redox state of epicardial tissue.
Passive mechanical testing of mouse carotid arteries is described, with special consideration for adapting to different specimen ages. The procedures include determining the in vivo length of the artery, mounting it in a pressure myograph, recording data, measuring the unloaded dimensions and analyzing the resulting data.