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Quincy, MA, United States

Downs A.M.,East Tennessee State University | Jalloh H.B.,East Tennessee State University | Prater K.J.,East Tennessee State University | Fregoso S.P.,East Tennessee State University | And 3 more authors.
Physiological Reports | Year: 2016

The neurotrophic factor neurturin is required for normal cholinergic innervation of adult mouse heart and bradycardic responses to vagal stimulation. Our goals were to determine effects of neurturin deletion on development of cardiac chronotropic and dromotropic functions, vagal baroreflex response, and cholinergic nerve density in nodal regions of postnatal mice. Experiments were performed on postnatal C57BL/6 wild-type (WT) and neurturin knockout (KO) mice. Serial electrocardiograms were recorded noninvasively from conscious pups using an ECGenie apparatus. Mice were treated with atenolol to evaluate and block sympathetic effects on heart rate (HR) and phenylephrine (PE) to stimulate the baroreflex. Immunohistochemistry was used to label cholinergic nerves in paraffin sections. WT and KO mice showed similar age-dependent increases in HR and decreases in PR interval between postnatal days (P) 2.5 and 21. Treatment with atenolol reduced HR significantly in WT and KO pups at P7.5. PE caused a reflex bradycardia that was significantly smaller in KO pups. Cholinergic nerve density was significantly less in nodal regions of P7.5 KO mice. We conclude that cholinergic nerves have minimal influence on developmental changes in HR and PR, QRS, and QTc intervals in mouse pups. However, cholinergic nerves mediate reflex bradycardia by 1 week postnatally. Deletion of neurturin impairs cholinergic innervation of the heart and the vagal efferent component of the baroreflex early during postnatal development. © 2016 Published by the American Physiological Society and The Physiological Society. Source


Heier C.R.,Childrens Memorial Research Center | Heier C.R.,Northwestern University | Hampton T.G.,Mouse Specifics Inc. | Wang D.,Northwestern University | And 2 more authors.
BMC Physiology | Year: 2010

Background: Electrocardiography remains the best diagnostic tool and therapeutic biomarker for a spectrum of pediatric diseases involving cardiac or autonomic nervous system defects. As genetic links to these disorders are established and transgenic mouse models produced in efforts to understand and treat them, there is a surprising lack of information on electrocardiograms (ECGs) and ECG abnormalities in neonate mice. This is likely due to the trauma and anaesthesia required of many legacy approaches to ECG recording in mice, exacerbated by the fragility of many mutant neonates. Here, we use a non-invasive system to characterize development of the heart rate and electrocardiogram throughout the growth of conscious neonate FVB/N mice. Results: We examine ECG waveforms as early as two days after birth. At this point males and females demonstrate comparable heart rates that are 50% lower than adult mice. Neonatal mice exhibit very low heart rate variability. Within 12 days of birth PR, QRS and QTc interval durations are near adult values while heart rate continues to increase until weaning. Upon weaning FVB/N females quickly develop slower heart rates than males, though PR intervals are comparable between sexes until a later age. This suggests separate developmental events may contribute to these gender differences in electrocardiography. Conclusions: We provide insight with a new level of detail to the natural course of heart rate establishment in neonate mice. ECG can now be conveniently and repeatedly used in neonatal mice. This should serve to be of broad utility, facilitating further investigations into development of a diverse group of diseases and therapeutics in preclinical mouse studies. © 2010 Heier et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source


Trademark
Mouse Specifics Inc. | Date: 2009-03-24

Non-invasive electrocardiogram for rodents.


Ables G.P.,Orentreich Foundation for the Advancement of Science Inc. | Ouattara A.,Orentreich Foundation for the Advancement of Science Inc. | Hampton T.G.,Mouse Specifics Inc. | Cooke D.,Orentreich Foundation for the Advancement of Science Inc. | And 3 more authors.
Scientific Reports | Year: 2015

Dietary methionine restriction (MR) in rodents increased lifespan despite higher heart-to-body weight ratio (w/w) and hyperhomocysteinemia, which are symptoms associated with increased risk for cardiovascular disease. We investigated this paradoxical effect of MR on cardiac function using young, old, and apolipoprotein E-deficient (ApoE-KO) mice. Indeed, MR animals exhibited higher heart-to-body weight ratio (w/w) and hyperhomocysteinemia with a molecular pattern consistent with cardiac stress while maintaining the integrity of cardiac structure. Baseline cardiac function, which was measured by non-invasive electrocardiography (ECG), showed that young MR mice had prolonged QRS intervals compared with control-fed (CF) mice, whereas old and ApoE-KO mice showed similar results for both groups. Following β-adrenergic challenge, responses of MR mice were either similar or attenuated compared with CF mice. Cardiac contractility, which was measured by isolated heart retrograde perfusion, was similar in both groups of old mice. Finally, the MR diet induced secretion of cardioprotective hormones, adiponectin and fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21), in MR mice with concomitant alterations in cardiac metabolic molecular signatures. Our findings demonstrate that MR diet does not alter cardiac function in mice despite the presence of hyperhomocysteinemia because of the adaptive responses of increased adiponectin and FGF21 levels. Source


Trademark
Mouse Specifics Inc. | Date: 2005-11-05

Computer software platforms for use in video monitoring.

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