Sep 1, 1996

AV nodal function during atrial fibrillation: the role of electrotonic modulation of propagation

Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology
F L MeijlerD Vaidya


The irregular ventricular rhythm that accompanies atrial fibrillation (AF) has been explained in terms of concealed conduction within the AV node (AVN). However, the cellular basis of concealed conduction in AF remains poorly understood. Our hypothesis is that electrotonic modulation of AVN propagation by atrial impulses blocked repetitively within the AVN is responsible for changes in function that lead to irregular ventricular rhythms in patients with AF. We have tested this idea using two different simplified computer ionic models of the AVN. The first ("black-box") model consisted of three cells: one representing the atrium, another one representing the AVN, and a third one representing the ventricle. The black-box model was used to establish the rules of behavior and predictions to be tested in a second, more elaborate model of the AVN. The latter ("nine-cell" model) incorporated a linear array of nine cells separated into three different regions. The first region of two cells represented the atrium; the second region of five cells represented the AV node; and the third region of two cells represented the ventricle. Cells were connected by appropriate coupling resistances. During regular atrial pacing, both models reproduc...Continue Reading

  • References41
  • Citations21
  • References41
  • Citations21


Mentioned in this Paper

Atrial Fibrillation
Cardiac Conduction System
Structure of Atrioventricular Node
Metabolic Inhibition
NODAL gene
Entire Atrium
Heart Ventricle

About this Paper

Related Feeds

Cardiac Conduction System

The cardiac conduction system is a specialized tract of myocardial cells responsible for maintaining normal cardiac rhythm. Discover the latest research on the cardiac conduction system here.


Arrhythmias are abnormalities in heart rhythms, which can be either too fast or too slow. They can result from abnormalities of the initiation of an impulse or impulse conduction or a combination of both. Here is the latest research on arrhythmias.

Atrial Filbrillation

Atrial fibrillation refers to the abnormal heart rhythm characterized by rapid and irregular beating of the atria. Here is the latest research.

Atrial Fibrillation

Atrial fibrillation is a common arrhythmia that is associated with substantial morbidity and mortality, particularly due to stroke and thromboembolism. Here is the latest research.