The variable heartbeat of Japanese moles (Mogera spp.)

Journal of Comparative Physiology. B, Biochemical, Systemic, and Environmental Physiology
Taiki MatsuoNaomi Wada


This report demonstrates the variable cardiac rhythm in two species of subterranean mole, the large Japanese mole (Mogera wogura) and the lesser Japanese mole (Mogera imaizumii). The phenomenon was revealed using X-ray videos of M. wogura and investigated in detail using electrocardiogram (ECG) traces recorded with implanted electrodes in this species and M. imaizumii. Cessation of heartbeat and extended R-R intervals were observed in the ECGs from both species during short bouts of rest in wakeful specimens of both species under normoxic conditions at room temperature. The mean durations of R-R intervals were 288.8 ± 3.3 ms for M. wogura and 191.9 ± 2.4 ms for M. imaizumii. The cardiac rhythm in both species became more unstable and R-R interval was prolonged by 153.5% ± 17.7 after injection of a sympathetic blocker (propranolol), whereas the application of a parasympathetic blocker (atropine) resulted in increasing stability and a reduced interval between R wave peaks (R-R) 64.2% ± 4.8. ECGs of two related soricomorphs, the fossorial Japanese shrew-mole (Urotrichus talpoides) and surface-dwelling Japanese white-toothed shrew (Crocidura dsinezumi) were also recorded and compared for comparison. The heartbeats of these species ...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Heart Beat
Potassium Channel Blockers
Parasympathetic Nerve Structure
Genus Mogera
Plain X-ray
Injection Procedure
Home Environment
Cardiac Rhythm Type

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