Swipe om te navigeren naar een ander artikel
†F. L. Meijler died on December 28, 2010. Correspondence should be addressed to E. E. van der Wall.
Forty years ago, we started our quest for ‘The Holy Grail’ of understanding ventricular rate control and rhythm in atrial fibrillation (AF). We therefore studied the morphology and function of a wide range of mammalian hearts. From mouse to whale, we found that all hearts show similar structural and functional characteristics. This suggests that the mammalian heart remained well conserved during evolution and in this aspect it differs from other organs and parts of the mammalian body. The archetype of the mammalian heart was apparently so successful that adaptation by natural selection (evolution) caused by varying habitat demands, as occurred in other organs and many other aspects of mammalian anatomy, bypassed the heart. The structure and function of the heart of placental mammals have thus been strikingly conserved throughout evolution. The changes in the mammalian heart that did take place were mostly adjustments (scaling), to compensate for variations in body size and shape. A remarkable scaling effect is, for instance, the difference in atrioventricular (AV) conduction time, which is vital for optimal cardiac function in all mammals, small and large. Scaling of AV conduction takes place in the AV node (AVN), but its substrate is unknown. This sheds new light on the vital role of the AVN in health and disease. The AVN is master and servant of the heart at the same time and is of salient importance for our understanding of supraventricular arrhythmias in humans, especially AF. In Information Technology a software infra-structure called ‘enterprise service bus’ (ESB) may provide understanding of the mammalian heart’s conservation during evolution. The ESB is quite unspecific (and thus general) when compared with the specialised components it has to support. For instance, one of the functions of an ESB is the routing of messages between system nodes. This routing is independent and unaware of the content of the messages. The function of the heart is likewise independent and unaware of the routing of blood (oxygen) and of the specialised components of the mammalian body it has to support. Conclusions Evolution seems to have bypassed the heart, which is in contrast to the sometimes similarly looking, but yet quite differently functioning of the other organs of the mammalian body.
Bootsma BK, Hoelen AJ, Strackee J, et al. Analysis of R-R intervals in patients with atrial fibrillation at rest and during exercise. Circulation. 1970;41:783–94. PubMed
Moe GK. On the multiple wavelet hypothesis of atrial fibrillation. Arch Int Pharmacodyn. 1962;140:183–8.
Meijler FL, Janse MJ. Morphology and electrophysiology of the mammalian atrioventricular node. Physiol Rev. 1988;68:608–47. PubMed
Meijler FL. The mismatch between size and function of the heart. Proc R Neth Acad Sci. 1990;93:463–7.
Gould SJ. Archetype and adaptation. Nat Hist. 1986;95/10:6–27.
Reznick DN. The Origin Then and Now; An Interpretive Guide to the Origin of Species. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press; 2010. p. 37.
Clegg PC, Clegg AG. Biology of the Mammal. London: Heinemann; 1975. p. 227.
Barth E, Stämmler G, Speiser B, et al. Ultrastructural quantification of mitochondria and myofilaments in cardiac muscle from 10 different species including man. J Moll Cell Cardiol. 1992;24:669–81. CrossRef
Sommer JR, Johnson EA. Ultrastructure of cardiac muscle. In: Berne RM, Sperelakis N, Geiger SR, editors. Handbook of Physiology. The Cardiovascular System. I. The heart. Bethesda: American Physiological Society; 1979. p. 113–86.
Schaper J, Stämmler G. Comparative morphometry of mammalian myocardium. Proc R Neth Acad Sci. 1990;93:501–5.
Meyling HA, ter Borg H. The conduction system of the heart in hoofed animals. Cornell Vet. 1957;47:419–55. PubMed
Slijper EJ. Walvissen. Amsterdam: DB Centen’s Uitgeversmaatschappij; 1958. p. 190–1.
Rowlatt U. Comparative anatomy of the heart of mammals. Zool J Linn Soc. 1990;98:73–110. CrossRef
Alpert NR, Brosseau C, Federico A, et al. Molecular mechanics of mouse cardiac myosin isoforms. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2002;283:H1446–54. PubMed
Durrer D, van Dam RTh, Freud GE et al. Total excitation of the isolated human heart. Circulation. 1970;41:895–912.
Durrer D, Janse MJ, Lie KI, et al. Human cardiac electrophysiology. In: Dickinson CJ, Marks J, editors. Developments in Cardiovascular Medicine. Lancaster: MTP Press; 1975. p. 53–75.
Galileo Galilei, translated by Henry Crew and Alfonso de Salvio. Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences . McGraw-Hill Paperbacks: Northwestern University Press; (1963), p. 126.
Schmidt Nielsen, K. Scaling Why is Animal Size so important? Cambridge UK: Cambridge University Press; 1984, pp. 143-5.
Prothero J. Heart weight as a function of body weight in mammals. Growth. 1979;43:139–50. PubMed
Teissier G. Biometrie de la cellule. Tabulae Biol. 1939;19:1–64.
Clark AJ. Comparative Physiology of the Heart. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press; 1927. p. 49–51.
Meijler FL, Van der Tweel LH. De elektrocardiogrammen van 10 olifanten en van de orka in Harderwijk. Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 1986;130:2344–8. PubMed
Wassenaar C. Comparative electrocardiography in mammals [thesis]. Utrecht: University of Utrecht; 1993.
Van Wezel-Meijler G, van Genderen HR, Meijler FL. Atrioventriculaire geleidingstijd bij te vroeg geborenen ongeveer de helft van die bij volwassenen. Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 1997;141:244–7. PubMed
Van der Tweel LH, Strackee J, Stokhof AA, et al. ECG of the ‘Newborn’ mouse (Mus Domesticus) with specific reference to comparative AV transmission. J Cardiovasc Electrophyiol. 1999;10:168–73. CrossRef
Gould SJ. Freudian Slip. Nat Hist. 1987;96/2:14–22.
- Archetype, adaptation and the mammalian heart
F. L. Meijler
T. D. Meijler
- Bohn Stafleu van Loghum