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Quantification of diffusion distance within the spongy myocardium of hearts from antarctic fishes.

TitleQuantification of diffusion distance within the spongy myocardium of hearts from antarctic fishes.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2000
AuthorsO'Brien, KM, Xue, H, Sidell, BD
JournalRespir Physiol
Date Published2000 Aug
KeywordsAnimals, Antarctic Regions, Diffusion, Fishes, Heart, Hemoglobins, Mitochondria, Heart, Myocardium, Myoglobin, Oxygen

We developed a stereological method for quantifying diffusion distance within spongy myocardium. Using this method we compared the hearts of three species of Antarctic fishes that vary in expression of oxygen-binding proteins. We examined hearts from Gobionotothen gibberifrons, a red-blooded species whose ventricle has myoglobin (Mb), and hearts of two species of icefish that lack hemoglobin (Hb) and vary in expression of cardiac Mb; Chionodraco rastrospinosus expresses Mb, Chaenocephalus aceratus does not. Average diffusion distance within ventricular tissue is greater in red-blooded Antarctic teleosts (9.82 + or - 1.37 microm) compared with icefish (C. rastrospinosus, 6.20 microm + or - 0.86; C. aceratus, 6.23 + or - 0.41 microm). Average diffusion distance to a mitochondrion parallels this trend because mitochondria are uniformly distributed within cardiac muscle. Results show that loss of Hb is correlated with increased trabeculation of heart ventricle. Loss of Mb however, is not correlated with an increase in trabeculation of ventricular tissue, despite significant differences in cellular ultrastructure compared with species that express the protein.

Alternate JournalRespir Physiol
PubMed ID10936602
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