Heart: The hollow, muscular organ that maintains the circulation of the blood.Heart Rate: The number of times the HEART VENTRICLES contract per unit of time, usually per minute.Heart Failure: A heterogeneous condition in which the heart is unable to pump out sufficient blood to meet the metabolic need of the body. Heart failure can be caused by structural defects, functional abnormalities (VENTRICULAR DYSFUNCTION), or a sudden overload beyond its capacity. Chronic heart failure is more common than acute heart failure which results from sudden insult to cardiac function, such as MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION.Heart Diseases: Pathological conditions involving the HEART including its structural and functional abnormalities.Heart Transplantation: The transference of a heart from one human or animal to another.Heart Defects, Congenital: Developmental abnormalities involving structures of the heart. These defects are present at birth but may be discovered later in life.Fetal Heart: The heart of the fetus of any viviparous animal. It refers to the heart in the postembryonic period and is differentiated from the embryonic heart (HEART/embryology) only on the basis of time.Heart Valves: Flaps of tissue that prevent regurgitation of BLOOD from the HEART VENTRICLES to the HEART ATRIA or from the PULMONARY ARTERIES or AORTA to the ventricles.Heart Atria: The chambers of the heart, to which the BLOOD returns from the circulation.Heart Block: Impaired conduction of cardiac impulse that can occur anywhere along the conduction pathway, such as between the SINOATRIAL NODE and the right atrium (SA block) or between atria and ventricles (AV block). Heart blocks can be classified by the duration, frequency, or completeness of conduction block. Reversibility depends on the degree of structural or functional defects.Myocardium: The muscle tissue of the HEART. It is composed of striated, involuntary muscle cells (MYOCYTES, CARDIAC) connected to form the contractile pump to generate blood flow.Heart Arrest, Induced: A procedure to stop the contraction of MYOCARDIUM during HEART SURGERY. It is usually achieved with the use of chemicals (CARDIOPLEGIC SOLUTIONS) or cold temperature (such as chilled perfusate).Heart Function Tests: Examinations used to diagnose and treat heart conditions.Myocardial Contraction: Contractile activity of the MYOCARDIUM.Myocardial Ischemia: A disorder of cardiac function caused by insufficient blood flow to the muscle tissue of the heart. The decreased blood flow may be due to narrowing of the coronary arteries (CORONARY ARTERY DISEASE), to obstruction by a thrombus (CORONARY THROMBOSIS), or less commonly, to diffuse narrowing of arterioles and other small vessels within the heart. Severe interruption of the blood supply to the myocardial tissue may result in necrosis of cardiac muscle (MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION).Myocytes, Cardiac: Striated muscle cells found in the heart. They are derived from cardiac myoblasts (MYOBLASTS, CARDIAC).Coronary Disease: An imbalance between myocardial functional requirements and the capacity of the CORONARY VESSELS to supply sufficient blood flow. It is a form of MYOCARDIAL ISCHEMIA (insufficient blood supply to the heart muscle) caused by a decreased capacity of the coronary vessels.Hemodynamics: The movement and the forces involved in the movement of the blood through the CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM.Cardiac Output, Low: A state of subnormal or depressed cardiac output at rest or during stress. It is a characteristic of CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES, including congenital, valvular, rheumatic, hypertensive, coronary, and cardiomyopathic. The serious form of low cardiac output is characterized by marked reduction in STROKE VOLUME, and systemic vasoconstriction resulting in cold, pale, and sometimes cyanotic extremities.Ventricular Function, Left: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the left HEART VENTRICLE. Its measurement is an important aspect of the clinical evaluation of patients with heart disease to determine the effects of the disease on cardiac performance.Time Factors: Elements of limited time intervals, contributing to particular results or situations.Heart, Artificial: A pumping mechanism that duplicates the output, rate, and blood pressure of the natural heart. It may replace the function of the entire heart or a portion of it, and may be an intracorporeal, extracorporeal, or paracorporeal heart. (Dorland, 28th ed)Heart Failure, Systolic: Heart failure caused by abnormal myocardial contraction during SYSTOLE leading to defective cardiac emptying.Perfusion: Treatment process involving the injection of fluid into an organ or tissue.Cardiomyopathy, Dilated: A form of CARDIAC MUSCLE disease that is characterized by ventricular dilation, VENTRICULAR DYSFUNCTION, and HEART FAILURE. Risk factors include SMOKING; ALCOHOL DRINKING; HYPERTENSION; INFECTION; PREGNANCY; and mutations in the LMNA gene encoding LAMIN TYPE A, a NUCLEAR LAMINA protein.Cardiomegaly: Enlargement of the HEART, usually indicated by a cardiothoracic ratio above 0.50. Heart enlargement may involve the right, the left, or both HEART VENTRICLES or HEART ATRIA. Cardiomegaly is a nonspecific symptom seen in patients with chronic systolic heart failure (HEART FAILURE) or several forms of CARDIOMYOPATHIES.Myocardial Infarction: NECROSIS of the MYOCARDIUM caused by an obstruction of the blood supply to the heart (CORONARY CIRCULATION).Heart Injuries: General or unspecified injuries to the heart.Heart Rate, Fetal: The heart rate of the FETUS. The normal range at term is between 120 and 160 beats per minute.Heart Septum: This structure includes the thin muscular atrial septum between the two HEART ATRIA, and the thick muscular ventricular septum between the two HEART VENTRICLES.Cardiotonic Agents: Agents that have a strengthening effect on the heart or that can increase cardiac output. They may be CARDIAC GLYCOSIDES; SYMPATHOMIMETICS; or other drugs. They are used after MYOCARDIAL INFARCT; CARDIAC SURGICAL PROCEDURES; in SHOCK; or in congestive heart failure (HEART FAILURE).Rheumatic Heart Disease: Cardiac manifestation of systemic rheumatological conditions, such as RHEUMATIC FEVER. Rheumatic heart disease can involve any part the heart, most often the HEART VALVES and the ENDOCARDIUM.Stroke Volume: The amount of BLOOD pumped out of the HEART per beat, not to be confused with cardiac output (volume/time). It is calculated as the difference between the end-diastolic volume and the end-systolic volume.Cardiomyopathies: A group of diseases in which the dominant feature is the involvement of the CARDIAC MUSCLE itself. Cardiomyopathies are classified according to their predominant pathophysiological features (DILATED CARDIOMYOPATHY; HYPERTROPHIC CARDIOMYOPATHY; RESTRICTIVE CARDIOMYOPATHY) or their etiological/pathological factors (CARDIOMYOPATHY, ALCOHOLIC; ENDOCARDIAL FIBROELASTOSIS).Echocardiography: Ultrasonic recording of the size, motion, and composition of the heart and surrounding tissues. The standard approach is transthoracic.Myocardial Reperfusion Injury: Damage to the MYOCARDIUM resulting from MYOCARDIAL REPERFUSION (restoration of blood flow to ischemic areas of the HEART.) Reperfusion takes place when there is spontaneous thrombolysis, THROMBOLYTIC THERAPY, collateral flow from other coronary vascular beds, or reversal of vasospasm.Heart Arrest: Cessation of heart beat or MYOCARDIAL CONTRACTION. If it is treated within a few minutes, heart arrest can be reversed in most cases to normal cardiac rhythm and effective circulation.Risk Factors: An aspect of personal behavior or lifestyle, environmental exposure, or inborn or inherited characteristic, which, on the basis of epidemiologic evidence, is known to be associated with a health-related condition considered important to prevent.Heart Valve Prosthesis: A device that substitutes for a heart valve. It may be composed of biological material (BIOPROSTHESIS) and/or synthetic material.Ventricular Dysfunction, Left: A condition in which the LEFT VENTRICLE of the heart was functionally impaired. This condition usually leads to HEART FAILURE; MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION; and other cardiovascular complications. Diagnosis is made by measuring the diminished ejection fraction and a depressed level of motility of the left ventricular wall.Adrenergic beta-Antagonists: Drugs that bind to but do not activate beta-adrenergic receptors thereby blocking the actions of beta-adrenergic agonists. Adrenergic beta-antagonists are used for treatment of hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, angina pectoris, glaucoma, migraine headaches, and anxiety.Heart Failure, Diastolic: Heart failure caused by abnormal myocardial relaxation during DIASTOLE leading to defective cardiac filling.American Heart Association: A voluntary organization concerned with the prevention and treatment of heart and vascular diseases.Ventricular Remodeling: The geometric and structural changes that the HEART VENTRICLES undergo, usually following MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION. It comprises expansion of the infarct and dilatation of the healthy ventricle segments. While most prevalent in the left ventricle, it can also occur in the right ventricle.Dogs: The domestic dog, Canis familiaris, comprising about 400 breeds, of the carnivore family CANIDAE. They are worldwide in distribution and live in association with people. (Walker's Mammals of the World, 5th ed, p1065)Prospective Studies: Observation of a population for a sufficient number of persons over a sufficient number of years to generate incidence or mortality rates subsequent to the selection of the study group.Oxygen Consumption: The rate at which oxygen is used by a tissue; microliters of oxygen STPD used per milligram of tissue per hour; the rate at which oxygen enters the blood from alveolar gas, equal in the steady state to the consumption of oxygen by tissue metabolism throughout the body. (Stedman, 25th ed, p346)Follow-Up Studies: Studies in which individuals or populations are followed to assess the outcome of exposures, procedures, or effects of a characteristic, e.g., occurrence of disease.Autonomic Nervous System: The ENTERIC NERVOUS SYSTEM; PARASYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM; and SYMPATHETIC NERVOUS SYSTEM taken together. Generally speaking, the autonomic nervous system regulates the internal environment during both peaceful activity and physical or emotional stress. Autonomic activity is controlled and integrated by the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM, especially the HYPOTHALAMUS and the SOLITARY NUCLEUS, which receive information relayed from VISCERAL AFFERENTS.Cardiac Pacing, Artificial: Regulation of the rate of contraction of the heart muscles by an artificial pacemaker.Heart Septal Defects: Abnormalities in any part of the HEART SEPTUM resulting in abnormal communication between the left and the right chambers of the heart. The abnormal blood flow inside the heart may be caused by defects in the ATRIAL SEPTUM, the VENTRICULAR SEPTUM, or both.Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome: A condition caused by underdevelopment of the whole left half of the heart. It is characterized by hypoplasia of the left cardiac chambers (HEART ATRIUM; HEART VENTRICLE), the AORTA, the AORTIC VALVE, and the MITRAL VALVE. Severe symptoms appear in early infancy when DUCTUS ARTERIOSUS closes.Heart Neoplasms: Tumors in any part of the heart. They include primary cardiac tumors and metastatic tumors to the heart. Their interference with normal cardiac functions can cause a wide variety of symptoms including HEART FAILURE; CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIAS; or EMBOLISM.Rats, Sprague-Dawley: A strain of albino rat used widely for experimental purposes because of its calmness and ease of handling. It was developed by the Sprague-Dawley Animal Company.Chronic Disease: Diseases which have one or more of the following characteristics: they are permanent, leave residual disability, are caused by nonreversible pathological alteration, require special training of the patient for rehabilitation, or may be expected to require a long period of supervision, observation, or care. (Dictionary of Health Services Management, 2d ed)National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (U.S.): Component of the NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH. It conducts and supports research program related to diseases of the heart, blood vessels, lung, and blood; blood resources; and SLEEP WAKE DISORDERS. From 1948 until October 10, 1969, it was known as the National Heart Institute. From June 25, 1976, it was the National Heart and Lung Institute. Since October 1997, the NHLBI has also had administrative responsibility for the NIH Woman's Health Initiative.Natriuretic Peptide, Brain: A PEPTIDE that is secreted by the BRAIN and the HEART ATRIA, stored mainly in cardiac ventricular MYOCARDIUM. It can cause NATRIURESIS; DIURESIS; VASODILATION; and inhibits secretion of RENIN and ALDOSTERONE. It improves heart function. It contains 32 AMINO ACIDS.Disease Models, Animal: Naturally occurring or experimentally induced animal diseases with pathological processes sufficiently similar to those of human diseases. They are used as study models for human diseases.Rats, Wistar: A strain of albino rat developed at the Wistar Institute that has spread widely at other institutions. This has markedly diluted the original strain.Ventricular Pressure: The pressure within a CARDIAC VENTRICLE. Ventricular pressure waveforms can be measured in the beating heart by catheterization or estimated using imaging techniques (e.g., DOPPLER ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY). The information is useful in evaluating the function of the MYOCARDIUM; CARDIAC VALVES; and PERICARDIUM, particularly with simultaneous measurement of other (e.g., aortic or atrial) pressures.Treatment Outcome: Evaluation undertaken to assess the results or consequences of management and procedures used in combating disease in order to determine the efficacy, effectiveness, safety, and practicability of these interventions in individual cases or series.Exercise Test: Controlled physical activity which is performed in order to allow assessment of physiological functions, particularly cardiovascular and pulmonary, but also aerobic capacity. Maximal (most intense) exercise is usually required but submaximal exercise is also used.Sympathetic Nervous System: The thoracolumbar division of the autonomic nervous system. Sympathetic preganglionic fibers originate in neurons of the intermediolateral column of the spinal cord and project to the paravertebral and prevertebral ganglia, which in turn project to target organs. The sympathetic nervous system mediates the body's response to stressful situations, i.e., the fight or flight reactions. It often acts reciprocally to the parasympathetic system.Models, Cardiovascular: Theoretical representations that simulate the behavior or activity of the cardiovascular system, processes, or phenomena; includes the use of mathematical equations, computers and other electronic equipment.Systole: Period of contraction of the HEART, especially of the HEART VENTRICLES.Endocardium: The innermost layer of the heart, comprised of endothelial cells.Diastole: Post-systolic relaxation of the HEART, especially the HEART VENTRICLES.Isoproterenol: Isopropyl analog of EPINEPHRINE; beta-sympathomimetic that acts on the heart, bronchi, skeletal muscle, alimentary tract, etc. It is used mainly as bronchodilator and heart stimulant.Propanolamines: AMINO ALCOHOLS containing the propanolamine (NH2CH2CHOHCH2) group and its derivatives.Heart Septal Defects, Ventricular: Developmental abnormalities in any portion of the VENTRICULAR SEPTUM resulting in abnormal communications between the two lower chambers of the heart. Classification of ventricular septal defects is based on location of the communication, such as perimembranous, inlet, outlet (infundibular), central muscular, marginal muscular, or apical muscular defect.Biological Markers: Measurable and quantifiable biological parameters (e.g., specific enzyme concentration, specific hormone concentration, specific gene phenotype distribution in a population, presence of biological substances) which serve as indices for health- and physiology-related assessments, such as disease risk, psychiatric disorders, environmental exposure and its effects, disease diagnosis, metabolic processes, substance abuse, pregnancy, cell line development, epidemiologic studies, etc.Ischemic Preconditioning, Myocardial: Exposure of myocardial tissue to brief, repeated periods of vascular occlusion in order to render the myocardium resistant to the deleterious effects of ISCHEMIA or REPERFUSION. The period of pre-exposure and the number of times the tissue is exposed to ischemia and reperfusion vary, the average being 3 to 5 minutes.Rabbits: The species Oryctolagus cuniculus, in the family Leporidae, order LAGOMORPHA. Rabbits are born in burrows, furless, and with eyes and ears closed. In contrast with HARES, rabbits have 22 chromosome pairs.Myocarditis: Inflammatory processes of the muscular walls of the heart (MYOCARDIUM) which result in injury to the cardiac muscle cells (MYOCYTES, CARDIAC). Manifestations range from subclinical to sudden death (DEATH, SUDDEN). Myocarditis in association with cardiac dysfunction is classified as inflammatory CARDIOMYOPATHY usually caused by INFECTION, autoimmune diseases, or responses to toxic substances. Myocarditis is also a common cause of DILATED CARDIOMYOPATHY and other cardiomyopathies.Heart-Assist Devices: Small pumps, often implantable, designed for temporarily assisting the heart, usually the LEFT VENTRICLE, to pump blood. They consist of a pumping chamber and a power source, which may be partially or totally external to the body and activated by electromagnetic motors.Calcium: A basic element found in nearly all organized tissues. It is a member of the alkaline earth family of metals with the atomic symbol Ca, atomic number 20, and atomic weight 40. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and combines with phosphorus to form calcium phosphate in the bones and teeth. It is essential for the normal functioning of nerves and muscles and plays a role in blood coagulation (as factor IV) and in many enzymatic processes.Electrocardiography, Ambulatory: Method in which prolonged electrocardiographic recordings are made on a portable tape recorder (Holter-type system) or solid-state device ("real-time" system), while the patient undergoes normal daily activities. It is useful in the diagnosis and management of intermittent cardiac arrhythmias and transient myocardial ischemia.Cardiovascular Diseases: Pathological conditions involving the CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM including the HEART; the BLOOD VESSELS; or the PERICARDIUM.Norepinephrine: Precursor of epinephrine that is secreted by the adrenal medulla and is a widespread central and autonomic neurotransmitter. Norepinephrine is the principal transmitter of most postganglionic sympathetic fibers and of the diffuse projection system in the brain arising from the locus ceruleus. It is also found in plants and is used pharmacologically as a sympathomimetic.Prognosis: A prediction of the probable outcome of a disease based on a individual's condition and the usual course of the disease as seen in similar situations.Predictive Value of Tests: In screening and diagnostic tests, the probability that a person with a positive test is a true positive (i.e., has the disease), is referred to as the predictive value of a positive test; whereas, the predictive value of a negative test is the probability that the person with a negative test does not have the disease. Predictive value is related to the sensitivity and specificity of the test.Cohort Studies: Studies in which subsets of a defined population are identified. These groups may or may not be exposed to factors hypothesized to influence the probability of the occurrence of a particular disease or other outcome. Cohorts are defined populations which, as a whole, are followed in an attempt to determine distinguishing subgroup characteristics.Pseudomonas fluorescens: A species of nonpathogenic fluorescent bacteria found in feces, sewage, soil, and water, and which liquefy gelatin.Risk Assessment: The qualitative or quantitative estimation of the likelihood of adverse effects that may result from exposure to specified health hazards or from the absence of beneficial influences. (Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1988)Retrospective Studies: Studies used to test etiologic hypotheses in which inferences about an exposure to putative causal factors are derived from data relating to characteristics of persons under study or to events or experiences in their past. The essential feature is that some of the persons under study have the disease or outcome of interest and their characteristics are compared with those of unaffected persons.RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.Hypertrophy, Left Ventricular: Enlargement of the LEFT VENTRICLE of the heart. This increase in ventricular mass is attributed to sustained abnormal pressure or volume loads and is a contributor to cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.Myocardial Reperfusion: Generally, restoration of blood supply to heart tissue which is ischemic due to decrease in normal blood supply. The decrease may result from any source including atherosclerotic obstruction, narrowing of the artery, or surgical clamping. Reperfusion can be induced to treat ischemia. Methods include chemical dissolution of an occluding thrombus, administration of vasodilator drugs, angioplasty, catheterization, and artery bypass graft surgery. However, it is thought that reperfusion can itself further damage the ischemic tissue, causing MYOCARDIAL REPERFUSION INJURY.Heart Valve Prosthesis Implantation: Surgical insertion of synthetic material to repair injured or diseased heart valves.Heart Septal Defects, Atrial: Developmental abnormalities in any portion of the ATRIAL SEPTUM resulting in abnormal communications between the two upper chambers of the heart. Classification of atrial septal defects is based on location of the communication and types of incomplete fusion of atrial septa with the ENDOCARDIAL CUSHIONS in the fetal heart. They include ostium primum, ostium secundum, sinus venosus, and coronary sinus defects.Ventricular Dysfunction: A condition in which HEART VENTRICLES exhibit impaired function.Dose-Response Relationship, Drug: The relationship between the dose of an administered drug and the response of the organism to the drug.Cardiac Surgical Procedures: Surgery performed on the heart.Age Factors: Age as a constituent element or influence contributing to the production of a result. It may be applicable to the cause or the effect of a circumstance. It is used with human or animal concepts but should be differentiated from AGING, a physiological process, and TIME FACTORS which refers only to the passage of time.Baroreflex: A response by the BARORECEPTORS to increased BLOOD PRESSURE. Increased pressure stretches BLOOD VESSELS which activates the baroreceptors in the vessel walls. The net response of the CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM is a reduction of central sympathetic outflow. This reduces blood pressure both by decreasing peripheral VASCULAR RESISTANCE and by lowering CARDIAC OUTPUT. Because the baroreceptors are tonically active, the baroreflex can compensate rapidly for both increases and decreases in blood pressure.Fibrosis: Any pathological condition where fibrous connective tissue invades any organ, usually as a consequence of inflammation or other injury.Vascular Resistance: The force that opposes the flow of BLOOD through a vascular bed. It is equal to the difference in BLOOD PRESSURE across the vascular bed divided by the CARDIAC OUTPUT.Cardiac Catheterization: Procedures in which placement of CARDIAC CATHETERS is performed for therapeutic or diagnostic procedures.Echocardiography, Doppler: Measurement of intracardiac blood flow using an M-mode and/or two-dimensional (2-D) echocardiogram while simultaneously recording the spectrum of the audible Doppler signal (e.g., velocity, direction, amplitude, intensity, timing) reflected from the moving column of red blood cells.Sinoatrial Node: The small mass of modified cardiac muscle fibers located at the junction of the superior vena cava (VENA CAVA, SUPERIOR) and right atrium. Contraction impulses probably start in this node, spread over the atrium (HEART ATRIUM) and are then transmitted by the atrioventricular bundle (BUNDLE OF HIS) to the ventricle (HEART VENTRICLE).Mice, Inbred C57BLTachycardia: Abnormally rapid heartbeat, usually with a HEART RATE above 100 beats per minute for adults. Tachycardia accompanied by disturbance in the cardiac depolarization (cardiac arrhythmia) is called tachyarrhythmia.Receptors, Adrenergic, beta: One of two major pharmacologically defined classes of adrenergic receptors. The beta adrenergic receptors play an important role in regulating CARDIAC MUSCLE contraction, SMOOTH MUSCLE relaxation, and GLYCOGENOLYSIS.Vagus Nerve: The 10th cranial nerve. The vagus is a mixed nerve which contains somatic afferents (from skin in back of the ear and the external auditory meatus), visceral afferents (from the pharynx, larynx, thorax, and abdomen), parasympathetic efferents (to the thorax and abdomen), and efferents to striated muscle (of the larynx and pharynx).Adrenergic beta-Agonists: Drugs that selectively bind to and activate beta-adrenergic receptors.Severity of Illness Index: Levels within a diagnostic group which are established by various measurement criteria applied to the seriousness of a patient's disorder.Exercise: Physical activity which is usually regular and done with the intention of improving or maintaining PHYSICAL FITNESS or HEALTH. Contrast with PHYSICAL EXERTION which is concerned largely with the physiologic and metabolic response to energy expenditure.Energy Metabolism: The chemical reactions involved in the production and utilization of various forms of energy in cells.Mice, Knockout: Strains of mice in which certain GENES of their GENOMES have been disrupted, or "knocked-out". To produce knockouts, using RECOMBINANT DNA technology, the normal DNA sequence of the gene being studied is altered to prevent synthesis of a normal gene product. Cloned cells in which this DNA alteration is successful are then injected into mouse EMBRYOS to produce chimeric mice. The chimeric mice are then bred to yield a strain in which all the cells of the mouse contain the disrupted gene. Knockout mice are used as EXPERIMENTAL ANIMAL MODELS for diseases (DISEASE MODELS, ANIMAL) and to clarify the functions of the genes.Proportional Hazards Models: Statistical models used in survival analysis that assert that the effect of the study factors on the hazard rate in the study population is multiplicative and does not change over time.Reference Values: The range or frequency distribution of a measurement in a population (of organisms, organs or things) that has not been selected for the presence of disease or abnormality.Death, Sudden, Cardiac: Unexpected rapid natural death due to cardiovascular collapse within one hour of initial symptoms. It is usually caused by the worsening of existing heart diseases. The sudden onset of symptoms, such as CHEST PAIN and CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIAS, particularly VENTRICULAR TACHYCARDIA, can lead to the loss of consciousness and cardiac arrest followed by biological death. (from Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine, 7th ed., 2005)Vasodilator Agents: Drugs used to cause dilation of the blood vessels.Pacemaker, Artificial: A device designed to stimulate, by electric impulses, contraction of the heart muscles. It may be temporary (external) or permanent (internal or internal-external).Creatine Kinase: A transferase that catalyzes formation of PHOSPHOCREATINE from ATP + CREATINE. The reaction stores ATP energy as phosphocreatine. Three cytoplasmic ISOENZYMES have been identified in human tissues: the MM type from SKELETAL MUSCLE, the MB type from myocardial tissue and the BB type from nervous tissue as well as a mitochondrial isoenzyme. Macro-creatine kinase refers to creatine kinase complexed with other serum proteins.Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Calcium-Transporting ATPases: Calcium-transporting ATPases that catalyze the active transport of CALCIUM into the SARCOPLASMIC RETICULUM vesicles from the CYTOPLASM. They are primarily found in MUSCLE CELLS and play a role in the relaxation of MUSCLES.Double-Blind Method: A method of studying a drug or procedure in which both the subjects and investigators are kept unaware of who is actually getting which specific treatment.Propranolol: A widely used non-cardioselective beta-adrenergic antagonist. Propranolol has been used for MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION; ARRHYTHMIA; ANGINA PECTORIS; HYPERTENSION; HYPERTHYROIDISM; MIGRAINE; PHEOCHROMOCYTOMA; and ANXIETY but adverse effects instigate replacement by newer drugs.Atrioventricular Node: A small nodular mass of specialized muscle fibers located in the interatrial septum near the opening of the coronary sinus. It gives rise to the atrioventricular bundle of the conduction system of the heart.Metoprolol: A selective adrenergic beta-1 blocking agent that is commonly used to treat ANGINA PECTORIS; HYPERTENSION; and CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIAS.Hospitalization: The confinement of a patient in a hospital.Diuretics: Agents that promote the excretion of urine through their effects on kidney function.Parasympathetic Nervous System: The craniosacral division of the autonomic nervous system. The cell bodies of the parasympathetic preganglionic fibers are in brain stem nuclei and in the sacral spinal cord. They synapse in cranial autonomic ganglia or in terminal ganglia near target organs. The parasympathetic nervous system generally acts to conserve resources and restore homeostasis, often with effects reciprocal to the sympathetic nervous system.Incidence: The number of new cases of a given disease during a given period in a specified population. It also is used for the rate at which new events occur in a defined population. It is differentiated from PREVALENCE, which refers to all cases, new or old, in the population at a given time.Aging: The gradual irreversible changes in structure and function of an organism that occur as a result of the passage of time.Sarcolemma: The excitable plasma membrane of a muscle cell. (Glick, Glossary of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 1990)United StatesModels, Animal: Non-human animals, selected because of specific characteristics, for use in experimental research, teaching, or testing.Atrial Fibrillation: Abnormal cardiac rhythm that is characterized by rapid, uncoordinated firing of electrical impulses in the upper chambers of the heart (HEART ATRIA). In such case, blood cannot be effectively pumped into the lower chambers of the heart (HEART VENTRICLES). It is caused by abnormal impulse generation.Guinea Pigs: A common name used for the genus Cavia. The most common species is Cavia porcellus which is the domesticated guinea pig used for pets and biomedical research.Signal Transduction: The intracellular transfer of information (biological activation/inhibition) through a signal pathway. In each signal transduction system, an activation/inhibition signal from a biologically active molecule (hormone, neurotransmitter) is mediated via the coupling of a receptor/enzyme to a second messenger system or to an ion channel. Signal transduction plays an important role in activating cellular functions, cell differentiation, and cell proliferation. Examples of signal transduction systems are the GAMMA-AMINOBUTYRIC ACID-postsynaptic receptor-calcium ion channel system, the receptor-mediated T-cell activation pathway, and the receptor-mediated activation of phospholipases. Those coupled to membrane depolarization or intracellular release of calcium include the receptor-mediated activation of cytotoxic functions in granulocytes and the synaptic potentiation of protein kinase activation. Some signal transduction pathways may be part of larger signal transduction pathways; for example, protein kinase activation is part of the platelet activation signal pathway.Cardiology: The study of the heart, its physiology, and its functions.Case-Control Studies: Studies which start with the identification of persons with a disease of interest and a control (comparison, referent) group without the disease. The relationship of an attribute to the disease is examined by comparing diseased and non-diseased persons with regard to the frequency or levels of the attribute in each group.Telemetry: Transmission of the readings of instruments to a remote location by means of wires, radio waves, or other means. (McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms, 4th ed)Infant, Newborn: An infant during the first month after birth.Respiration: The act of breathing with the LUNGS, consisting of INHALATION, or the taking into the lungs of the ambient air, and of EXHALATION, or the expelling of the modified air which contains more CARBON DIOXIDE than the air taken in (Blakiston's Gould Medical Dictionary, 4th ed.). This does not include tissue respiration (= OXYGEN CONSUMPTION) or cell respiration (= CELL RESPIRATION).Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Kidney: Body organ that filters blood for the secretion of URINE and that regulates ion concentrations.Ventricular Fibrillation: A potentially lethal cardiac arrhythmia that is characterized by uncoordinated extremely rapid firing of electrical impulses (400-600/min) in HEART VENTRICLES. Such asynchronous ventricular quivering or fibrillation prevents any effective cardiac output and results in unconsciousness (SYNCOPE). It is one of the major electrocardiographic patterns seen with CARDIAC ARREST.Tissue Distribution: Accumulation of a drug or chemical substance in various organs (including those not relevant to its pharmacologic or therapeutic action). This distribution depends on the blood flow or perfusion rate of the organ, the ability of the drug to penetrate organ membranes, tissue specificity, protein binding. The distribution is usually expressed as tissue to plasma ratios.Action Potentials: Abrupt changes in the membrane potential that sweep along the CELL MEMBRANE of excitable cells in response to excitation stimuli.Sex Factors: Maleness or femaleness as a constituent element or influence contributing to the production of a result. It may be applicable to the cause or effect of a circumstance. It is used with human or animal concepts but should be differentiated from SEX CHARACTERISTICS, anatomical or physiological manifestations of sex, and from SEX DISTRIBUTION, the number of males and females in given circumstances.Body Weight: The mass or quantity of heaviness of an individual. It is expressed by units of pounds or kilograms.Digoxin: A cardiotonic glycoside obtained mainly from Digitalis lanata; it consists of three sugars and the aglycone DIGOXIGENIN. Digoxin has positive inotropic and negative chronotropic activity. It is used to control ventricular rate in ATRIAL FIBRILLATION and in the management of congestive heart failure with atrial fibrillation. Its use in congestive heart failure and sinus rhythm is less certain. The margin between toxic and therapeutic doses is small. (From Martindale, The Extra Pharmacopoeia, 30th ed, p666)Cardiovascular Physiological Phenomena: Processes and properties of the CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM as a whole or of any of its parts.Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control of gene action during the developmental stages of an organism.Cardiac Volume: The volume of the HEART, usually relating to the volume of BLOOD contained within it at various periods of the cardiac cycle. The amount of blood ejected from a ventricle at each beat is STROKE VOLUME.Muscle Proteins: The protein constituents of muscle, the major ones being ACTINS and MYOSINS. More than a dozen accessory proteins exist including TROPONIN; TROPOMYOSIN; and DYSTROPHIN.Animals, Newborn: Refers to animals in the period of time just after birth.Muscle, Skeletal: A subtype of striated muscle, attached by TENDONS to the SKELETON. Skeletal muscles are innervated and their movement can be consciously controlled. They are also called voluntary muscles.Cyanosis: A bluish or purplish discoloration of the skin and mucous membranes due to an increase in the amount of deoxygenated hemoglobin in the blood or a structural defect in the hemoglobin molecule.Adenosine Triphosphate: An adenine nucleotide containing three phosphate groups esterified to the sugar moiety. In addition to its crucial roles in metabolism adenosine triphosphate is a neurotransmitter.Organ Specificity: Characteristic restricted to a particular organ of the body, such as a cell type, metabolic response or expression of a particular protein or antigen.Rats, Inbred Strains: Genetically identical individuals developed from brother and sister matings which have been carried out for twenty or more generations or by parent x offspring matings carried out with certain restrictions. This also includes animals with a long history of closed colony breeding.Anoxia: Relatively complete absence of oxygen in one or more tissues.Carbazoles: Benzo-indoles similar to CARBOLINES which are pyrido-indoles. In plants, carbazoles are derived from indole and form some of the INDOLE ALKALOIDS.Sarcoplasmic Reticulum: A network of tubules and sacs in the cytoplasm of SKELETAL MUSCLE FIBERS that assist with muscle contraction and relaxation by releasing and storing calcium ions.Molecular Sequence Data: Descriptions of specific amino acid, carbohydrate, or nucleotide sequences which have appeared in the published literature and/or are deposited in and maintained by databanks such as GENBANK, European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), National Biomedical Research Foundation (NBRF), or other sequence repositories.Reproducibility of Results: The statistical reproducibility of measurements (often in a clinical context), including the testing of instrumentation or techniques to obtain reproducible results. The concept includes reproducibility of physiological measurements, which may be used to develop rules to assess probability or prognosis, or response to a stimulus; reproducibility of occurrence of a condition; and reproducibility of experimental results.Endomyocardial Fibrosis: A condition characterized by the thickening of the ventricular ENDOCARDIUM and subendocardium (MYOCARDIUM), seen mostly in children and young adults in the TROPICAL CLIMATE. The fibrous tissue extends from the apex toward and often involves the HEART VALVES causing restrictive blood flow into the respective ventricles (CARDIOMYOPATHY, RESTRICTIVE).Prevalence: The total number of cases of a given disease in a specified population at a designated time. It is differentiated from INCIDENCE, which refers to the number of new cases in the population at a given time.Oxygen: An element with atomic symbol O, atomic number 8, and atomic weight [15.99903; 15.99977]. It is the most abundant element on earth and essential for respiration.Antihypertensive Agents: Drugs used in the treatment of acute or chronic vascular HYPERTENSION regardless of pharmacological mechanism. Among the antihypertensive agents are DIURETICS; (especially DIURETICS, THIAZIDE); ADRENERGIC BETA-ANTAGONISTS; ADRENERGIC ALPHA-ANTAGONISTS; ANGIOTENSIN-CONVERTING ENZYME INHIBITORS; CALCIUM CHANNEL BLOCKERS; GANGLIONIC BLOCKERS; and VASODILATOR AGENTS.Phosphocreatine: An endogenous substance found mainly in skeletal muscle of vertebrates. It has been tried in the treatment of cardiac disorders and has been added to cardioplegic solutions. (Reynolds JEF(Ed): Martindale: The Extra Pharmacopoeia (electronic version). Micromedex, Inc, Englewood, CO, 1996)Survival Analysis: A class of statistical procedures for estimating the survival function (function of time, starting with a population 100% well at a given time and providing the percentage of the population still well at later times). The survival analysis is then used for making inferences about the effects of treatments, prognostic factors, exposures, and other covariates on the function.Gene Expression: The phenotypic manifestation of a gene or genes by the processes of GENETIC TRANSCRIPTION and GENETIC TRANSLATION.Survival Rate: The proportion of survivors in a group, e.g., of patients, studied and followed over a period, or the proportion of persons in a specified group alive at the beginning of a time interval who survive to the end of the interval. It is often studied using life table methods.Pulmonary Wedge Pressure: The blood pressure as recorded after wedging a CATHETER in a small PULMONARY ARTERY; believed to reflect the PRESSURE in the pulmonary CAPILLARIES.Epinephrine: The active sympathomimetic hormone from the ADRENAL MEDULLA. It stimulates both the alpha- and beta- adrenergic systems, causes systemic VASOCONSTRICTION and gastrointestinal relaxation, stimulates the HEART, and dilates BRONCHI and cerebral vessels. It is used in ASTHMA and CARDIAC FAILURE and to delay absorption of local ANESTHETICS.Cardiac Myosins: Myosin type II isoforms found in cardiac muscle.Cause of Death: Factors which produce cessation of all vital bodily functions. They can be analyzed from an epidemiologic viewpoint.Atrial Function: The hemodynamic and electrophysiological action of the HEART ATRIA.Blood Flow Velocity: A value equal to the total volume flow divided by the cross-sectional area of the vascular bed.Heart Aneurysm: A localized bulging or dilatation in the muscle wall of a heart (MYOCARDIUM), usually in the LEFT VENTRICLE. Blood-filled aneurysms are dangerous because they may burst. Fibrous aneurysms interfere with the heart function through the loss of contractility. True aneurysm is bound by the vessel wall or cardiac wall. False aneurysms are HEMATOMA caused by myocardial rupture.Tachycardia, Ventricular: An abnormally rapid ventricular rhythm usually in excess of 150 beats per minute. It is generated within the ventricle below the BUNDLE OF HIS, either as autonomic impulse formation or reentrant impulse conduction. Depending on the etiology, onset of ventricular tachycardia can be paroxysmal (sudden) or nonparoxysmal, its wide QRS complexes can be uniform or polymorphic, and the ventricular beating may be independent of the atrial beating (AV dissociation).Atropine: An alkaloid, originally from Atropa belladonna, but found in other plants, mainly SOLANACEAE. Hyoscyamine is the 3(S)-endo isomer of atropine.Regression Analysis: Procedures for finding the mathematical function which best describes the relationship between a dependent variable and one or more independent variables. In linear regression (see LINEAR MODELS) the relationship is constrained to be a straight line and LEAST-SQUARES ANALYSIS is used to determine the best fit. In logistic regression (see LOGISTIC MODELS) the dependent variable is qualitative rather than continuously variable and LIKELIHOOD FUNCTIONS are used to find the best relationship. In multiple regression, the dependent variable is considered to depend on more than a single independent variable.Regional Blood Flow: The flow of BLOOD through or around an organ or region of the body.Kinetics: The rate dynamics in chemical or physical systems.Pulmonary Heart Disease: Hypertrophy and dilation of the RIGHT VENTRICLE of the heart that is caused by PULMONARY HYPERTENSION. This condition is often associated with pulmonary parenchymal or vascular diseases, such as CHRONIC OBSTRUCTIVE PULMONARY DISEASE and PULMONARY EMBOLISM.Sodium-Calcium Exchanger: An electrogenic ion exchange protein that maintains a steady level of calcium by removing an amount of calcium equal to that which enters the cells. It is widely distributed in most excitable membranes, including the brain and heart.Risk: The probability that an event will occur. It encompasses a variety of measures of the probability of a generally unfavorable outcome.Adenosine: A nucleoside that is composed of ADENINE and D-RIBOSE. Adenosine or adenosine derivatives play many important biological roles in addition to being components of DNA and RNA. Adenosine itself is a neurotransmitter.Rest: Freedom from activity.Papillary Muscles: Conical muscular projections from the walls of the cardiac ventricles, attached to the cusps of the atrioventricular valves by the chordae tendineae.Aorta: The main trunk of the systemic arteries.Gene Expression Regulation: Any of the processes by which nuclear, cytoplasmic, or intercellular factors influence the differential control (induction or repression) of gene action at the level of transcription or translation.Blotting, Western: Identification of proteins or peptides that have been electrophoretically separated by blot transferring from the electrophoresis gel to strips of nitrocellulose paper, followed by labeling with antibody probes.Myosin Heavy Chains: The larger subunits of MYOSINS. The heavy chains have a molecular weight of about 230 kDa and each heavy chain is usually associated with a dissimilar pair of MYOSIN LIGHT CHAINS. The heavy chains possess actin-binding and ATPase activity.Acute Disease: Disease having a short and relatively severe course.Phenotype: The outward appearance of the individual. It is the product of interactions between genes, and between the GENOTYPE and the environment.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Phonocardiography: Graphic registration of the heart sounds picked up as vibrations and transformed by a piezoelectric crystal microphone into a varying electrical output according to the stresses imposed by the sound waves. The electrical output is amplified by a stethograph amplifier and recorded by a device incorporated into the electrocardiograph or by a multichannel recording machine.Nitric Oxide: A free radical gas produced endogenously by a variety of mammalian cells, synthesized from ARGININE by NITRIC OXIDE SYNTHASE. Nitric oxide is one of the ENDOTHELIUM-DEPENDENT RELAXING FACTORS released by the vascular endothelium and mediates VASODILATION. It also inhibits platelet aggregation, induces disaggregation of aggregated platelets, and inhibits platelet adhesion to the vascular endothelium. Nitric oxide activates cytosolic GUANYLATE CYCLASE and thus elevates intracellular levels of CYCLIC GMP.Sensitivity and Specificity: Binary classification measures to assess test results. Sensitivity or recall rate is the proportion of true positives. Specificity is the probability of correctly determining the absence of a condition. (From Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 2d ed)Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic: A form of CARDIAC MUSCLE disease, characterized by left and/or right ventricular hypertrophy (HYPERTROPHY, LEFT VENTRICULAR; HYPERTROPHY, RIGHT VENTRICULAR), frequent asymmetrical involvement of the HEART SEPTUM, and normal or reduced left ventricular volume. Risk factors include HYPERTENSION; AORTIC STENOSIS; and gene MUTATION; (FAMILIAL HYPERTROPHIC CARDIOMYOPATHY).Troponin I: One of the three polypeptide chains that make up the TROPONIN complex. It inhibits F-actin-myosin interactions.Pressoreceptors: Receptors in the vascular system, particularly the aorta and carotid sinus, which are sensitive to stretch of the vessel walls.Oxidative Stress: A disturbance in the prooxidant-antioxidant balance in favor of the former, leading to potential damage. Indicators of oxidative stress include damaged DNA bases, protein oxidation products, and lipid peroxidation products (Sies, Oxidative Stress, 1991, pxv-xvi).Angina Pectoris: The symptom of paroxysmal pain consequent to MYOCARDIAL ISCHEMIA usually of distinctive character, location and radiation. It is thought to be provoked by a transient stressful situation during which the oxygen requirements of the MYOCARDIUM exceed that supplied by the CORONARY CIRCULATION.Catecholamines: A general class of ortho-dihydroxyphenylalkylamines derived from tyrosine.