Hybrid duplex: a novel method to study the contractile function of heterogeneous myocardium.
Protsenko YL., Routkevitch SM., Gur'ev VY., Katsnelson LB., Solovyova O., Lookin ON., Balakin AA., Kohl P., Markhasin VS.
In an earlier study, we experimentally mimicked the effects of mechanical interaction between different regions of the ventricular wall by allowing pairs of independently maintained cardiac muscle fibers to interact mechanically in series or in parallel. This simple physiological model of heterogeneous myocardium, which has been termed "duplex," has provided new insight into basic effects of cardiac electromechanical heterogeneity. Here, we present a novel "hybrid duplex," where one of the elements is an isolated cardiac muscle and the other a "virtual cardiac muscle." The virtual muscle is represented by a computational model of cardiomyocyte electromechanical activity. We present in detail the computer-based digital control system that governs the mechanical interaction between virtual and biological muscle, the software used for data analysis, and working implementations of the model. Advantages of the hybrid duplex method are discussed, and experimental recordings are presented for illustration and as proof of the principle.