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Can J Cardiol. 2005 May 1;21(6):509-16.

Therapeutic potential of novel Na+-Ca2+ exchange inhibitors in attenuating ischemia-reperfusion injury.

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Institute of Cardiovascular Sciences, St Boniface General Hospital Research Centre, Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada.


The cardiac Na+-Ca2+ exchanger (NCX) plays an essential role in regulating Ca2+ under physiological and pathophysiological conditions. In its forward mode of operation, which predominates under physiological conditions, it extrudes the Ca2+ that enters the cardiac myocyte on a beat-to-beat basis. During ischemia and reperfusion, increased intracellular Na+ leads to a decrease in Ca2+ efflux and enhanced Ca2+ influx via the NCX, potentially leading to Ca2+ overload, which is one of the major pathophysiological mechanisms for ischemia-reperfusion injury. Novel NCX inhibitors discovered in recent years have shown great promise in attenuating ischemia-reperfusion injury.

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