Potential and current distributions in a cylindrical bundle of cardiac tissue.
The intracellular and interstitial potentials associated with each cell or fiber in multicellular preparations carrying a uniformly propagating wave are important for characterizing the electrophysiological behavior of the preparation and in particular, for evaluating the source contributed by each fiber. The aforementioned potentials depend on a number of factors including the conductivities characterizing the intracellular, interstitial, and extracellular domains, the thickness of the tissue, and the distance (depth) of the field point from the surface of the tissue. A model study is presented describing the extracellular and interstitial potential distribution and current flow in a cylindrical bundle of cardiac muscle arising from a planar wavefront. For simplicity, the bundle is considered as a bidomain. Using typical values of conductivity, the results show that the intracellular and interstitial potential of fibers near the center of a very large bundle (greater than 10 mm) may be approximated by the potentials of a single fiber surrounded by a limited extracellular space (a fiber in oil), hence justifying a core-conductor model. For smaller bundles, the peak interstitial potential is less than that predicted by the core-conductor model but still large enough to affect the overall source strength. The magnitude of the source strength is greatest for fibers lying near the center of the bundle and diminishes sharply for fibers within 50 microns of the surface.
Henriquez, CS; Trayanova, N; Plonsey, R
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