Antiarrhythmic actions of verapamil against ischaemic arrhythmias in the rat

British Journal of Pharmacology
M J CurtisM J Walker


The actions of intravenous verapamil against arrhythmias induced by occlusion of a coronary artery were investigated in conscious rats. Verapamil (2-20 mg kg-1, i.v. given pre-occlusion) dose-dependently reduced arrhythmias in rats with either large or small occluded zones at an ED50 of 6 mg kg-1. This dose was effective when given immediately post-occlusion. Severe arrhythmias, as opposed to PVC, were preferentially reduced. In conscious, and pentobarbitone-anaesthetized rats, verapamil (6 mg kg-1) had different effects on electrically-induced arrhythmias, and the ECG, from an equi-effective anti-arrhythmic dose of quinidine (20 mg kg-1, i.v.). Quinidine decreased following frequency, but increased threshold current and pulse width, whereas verapamil did not. Both drugs increased P-R interval, but only quinidine increased QRS and Q-T intervals. Thirty minutes post-occlusion, the verapamil content of tissue and blood was determined after a 6 mg kg-1 dose given pre- or post-occlusion. Measurable levels of verapamil were found in both normal and ischaemic myocardium. Plasma and plasma water concentrations were 3.6 +/- 0.8 mumol l-1 and 0.6 +/- 0.1 mumol l-1 (mean +/- s.e. mean), respectively following post-occlusion administratio...Continue Reading


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