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Drift and termination of spiral waves in optogenetically-modified cardiac tissue at sub-threshold illumination

By Sayedeh Hussaini, Vishalini Venkatesan, Valentina Biasci, José M. Romero Sepúlveda, Raúl A. Quiñonez Uribe, Leonardo Sacconi, Gil Bub, Claudia Richter, Valentin Krinski, Ulrich Parlitz, Rupamanjari Majumder, Stefan Luther

Posted 13 Jun 2020
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2020.06.12.148734

The development of new approaches to control cardiac arrhythmias requires a deep understanding of spiral wave dynamics. Optogenetics offers new possibilities for this. Preliminary experiments show that sub-threshold illumination affects electrical wave propagation in the mouse heart. However, a systematic exploration of these effects is technically challenging. Here, we use state-of-the-art computer models to study the dynamic control of spiral waves in a two-dimensional model of the adult mouse ventricle, using stationary and non-stationary patterns of sub-threshold illumination. Our results indicate a light intensity-dependent increase in cellular resting membrane potentials, which together with diffusive cell-cell coupling leads to the development of spatial voltage gradients over differently illuminated areas. A spiral wave drifts along the positive gradient. These gradients can be strategically applied to ensure drift-induced termination of a spiral wave, both in optogenetics and in conventional methods of electrical defibrillation. ### Competing Interest Statement The authors have declared no competing interest.

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