Dr. Matteo E. Mangoni
Prof. Dr. Joel Nargeot

Functional role of L-type VGCCs in cardiac pacemaking and arrhythmias

Institute of Functional Genomics, Dept. of Physiology, University of Montpellier I & II, France

The Department of Physiology at the IGF is centred on the functional role and structure-to-function relations of T- and L-VGCCs isoforms in the heart and in the peripheral nervous system. Our laboratory has been the first to describe the properties of VGCCs in human cardiac and vascular cells and to clone human T-type Ca2+ channel isoforms. Furthermore, we have also been the first to isolate and describe the properties of pacemaker and conduction cells from the mouse. A broad array of methodological techniques and experimental approaches are available in our department and in the whole institute. These include all molecular biological techniques (DNA, RNA techniques, siRNAs) and heterologous expression of ionic channels and receptors in mammalian cells. Electrophysiological techniques (whole cell patch-clamp, standard intracellular voltage-clamp), telemetric recordings of electrocardiograms and blood pressure are also available. We also have open access methodological platforms for confocal microscopy, Ca2+ imaging, dosing of intracellular second messengers, transcriptome, proteomics and heterologous expression with different kinds of viral vectors. We also bear adequate expertise in numerical modelling of pacemaker activity and can take advance of calculus resources by outstandingly powerful Unix servers. We feel that this point improves the multidisciplinary aspect of research inside the proposed network. In conclusion, our institute provides an excellent and stimulating environment for the training of young scientists.

Our group will be in charge to define the functional role of Cav1.3 channels in the autonomic regulation of pacemaker activity. Furthermore, the exchange of methodological expertise with NP10 will allow the study of Ca2+ signalling mediated by the sarcoplasmic and endoplasmic reticulum in pacemaker cells. Collaboration with NP08 will allow for the first time the definition of the role of atrial secretion of hormones in the modulation of pacemaking.

Our department already employs 10 tenured senior researchers, 3 post-docs and trains 6 graduate PhD students. The department substantially contributes teaching staff for the graduate programme "Biology and Health" of the Universities of Montpellier I and II.

CavNet0049 7071 2987644
L-type calcium channels in health and