Sodium requirement for the positive inotropic action of isoproterenol on guinea pig atria

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Science  03 Feb 1978:
Vol. 199, Issue 4328, pp. 539-541
DOI: 10.1126/science.203031


Isoproterenol doses not elicit its characteristic positive inotropic action in contracting guinea pig atria suspended in sodium-free media. However, the ability of isoproterenol to decrease the time to peak tension development during an individual contraction cycle is still present in sodium-free solutions. Removal of sodium diminished but did not eliminate the tissues' ability to elevate adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate in response to isoproterenol. The striking absence of an inotropic action by isoproterenol on atria in sodium-free media suggests that sodium (and possibly a sodium-calcium exchange across the sarcolemma) plays an important role in the inotropic action of catecholamines.