The effect of Purkinje fiber distribution on the electrical axis of the heart in large animals

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Kirstine Calloe


University of Copenhagen


DKK 419,018




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The pumping action of the heart is critically dependant on a concerted activation of the many cells in the walls of the cardiac chambers. This is obviously true of animals of all sizes, and it remains both unanswered and astounding how the electrical signals can spread and simultaneously activate all the ventricular layers large mammals, such as lions, rhinos, elephants and whales. In this project, we will unravel the evolution of the different adaptive solutions that secure coordinated contraction in mammals with particular focus on large species. We will elucidate how the distribution of the Purkinje cells within the ventricular wall is reflected in the ECG and the electrical axis of the heart.

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