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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Block of delayed rectifier potassium current, IK, by flecainide and E-4031 in cat ventricular myocytes.

Block of the delayed rectifier potassium current, IK, by the class IC antiarrhythmic agent, flecainide, and by the novel selective class III antiarrhythmic agent, E-4031, were compared in isolated cat ventricular myocytes using the single suction-pipette, voltage-clamp technique. Flecainide (10 microM) markedly reduced IK elicited on depolarization steps to plateau voltages (+10 mV) and nearly completely blocked the "tail currents" elicited on repolarization to -40 mV (93 +/- 4% block at +40 mV, n = 3). E-4031 (1 microM) produced similar effects (96 +/- 3% block at +40 mV, n = 3). Slow voltage ramps from -100 to +40 mV confirmed inward rectifying properties of IK and showed that flecainide and E-4031 have no effects on the background potassium current, IK1. Thus, the results demonstrate that block of IK is a common feature of flecainide and E-4031. IK block by E-4031 most likely underlies the drug's potent class III antiarrhythmic properties. On the other hand, flecainide block of IK during an action potential would tend to prolong repolarization, but this effect may be obscured by concomitant block of plateau Na+ channels to produce little or no change in action potential duration, consistent with its class IC classification.[1]


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