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

Effects of Levosimendan, a cardiotonic agent targeted to troponin C, on cardiac function and on phosphorylation and Ca2+ sensitivity of cardiac myofibrils and sarcoplasmic reticulum in guinea pig heart.

A new cardiotonic agent, (R)-[[4-(1,4,5,6-tetrahydro-4-methyl-6-oxo-3-pyridazinyl)-phenyl] hydrazono]propanedinitrile (Levosimendan), has been developed and screened for its ability to bind to cardiac troponin C. In perfused hearts, low concentrations of 0.03 or 0.1 mumol/L Levosimendan increased +dP/dt, but did not affect the speed of relaxation and produced only a slight increase in spontaneous heart rate in the hearts perfused with 0.1 mumol/L of the drug. In these same hearts, perfusion with 0.03 mumol/L Levosimendan did not alter the 32P incorporation into troponin I or C protein, whereas a slight but significant increase was noted for phospholamban, with no detectable change in tissue cAMP levels. Administration of 0.1 or 0.3 mumol/L Levosimendan significantly increased myocardial cAMP levels as well as the phosphorylation of phospholamban, troponin I, and C protein. Levosimendan (0.03 to 10 mumol/L) reversibly increased force generated by detergent-extracted fiber bundles over a range of submaximally activating free Ca2+ concentrations with no significant effect on maximum force or on Ca2+ binding to myofilament troponin C. There was no direct effect of Levosimendan on Ca2+ uptake by vesicles of sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR). In contrast, under conditions optimal for cAMP-dependent phosphorylation, Levosimendan slightly but significantly lowered the concentration of Ca2+, yielding half-maximal uptake rates by the SR vesicles. Our results indicate that at low concentrations Levosimendan acts preferably as a Ca2+ sensitizer, whereas at higher concentrations its action as a phosphodiesterase inhibitor contributes to the positive inotropic effect.[1]


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