Langendorff perfused heart – the 110 years old experimental model that gets better with age

Authors: Silvia Nicoleta MIRICA1, Valentin ORDODI2, Adrian APOSTOL4, Dorin ANA3, Andreea RĂDUCAN1, Oana DUICU1, Mircea HÂNCU1, Viviana IVAN4, Danina MUNTEAN1

Affiliation: 1 Department of Pathophysiology, “Victor Babeş” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Timişoara, Romania; 2 Department of Cellular and Molecular Biology, “Victor Babeş” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Timişoara, Romania; 3 Department of Pharmacology, “Victor Babeş” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Timişoara, Romania; 4 Cardiology Clinic I, City Hospital, Timişoara, Romania


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ABSTRACT. Myocardial ischemia-reperfusion (I-R) injury is one of the most extensively studied topics in cardiovascular research. Animal models of acute global or regional ischemia are critical for both understanding the underlying pathophysiology and testing novel cardioprotective strategies in the preclinical setting. The most extensively used isolated organ model is the Langendorff perfused mammalian heart. The setup consists of a heart whose coronary arteries are retrogradely perfused with heated and oxygenated buffer solutions through a cannula fixed in the ascending aorta, either at constant hydrostatic pressure (prefered for studies of ischemia) or at constant flow rate. The ventricles do not fill with the perfusate, but contract isovolumetrically after the insertion of an intraventricular latex balloon. Global ischemia is achieved by completely stopping the coronary flow followed by different reperfusion times. The isolated heart is particularly useful for the study of contractile function (recovery after global ischemia) as well as of the biochemical and metabolic events occurring during ischemia and early reperfusion.


Keywords: ischemia-reperfusion, isolated perfused heart, Langendorff preparation, cardiac function parameters