Implications of Field Induced Ca2 Gradients

Although the finding about perturbation in intracellular Ca2+ and induction of spatially gradients in [Ca2+]; by external electric fields is of fundamental biophysical interest, whether it is of any real consequence during defibrillation or other phenomenon involving application of high electric fields needs further investigation.84-86 Perhaps accounting for [Ca2+j; gradients is necessary to accurately predict the shock outcome during defibrillation.

Considering that Ca2+ is a ubiquitous second messenger and voltage-gated Ca2+ channels are present in several different cell types, the field-induced changes in [Ca2+]i could have implications beyond the cardiac system. For phenomena involving applications of long-lasting (pulsed) electric fields, one must consider the possibility that field-induced changes in [Ca2+]i may in fact be able to alter cellular signaling and impact cellular function, perhaps by design in some situations.

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