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Br J Pharmacol. 1970 Aug;39(4):657-67.

The effect of amiodarone, a new anti-anginal drug, on cardiac muscle.


1. Amiodarone (2-butyl, 3-(4-diethylaminoethoxy, 3,5-diiodo, benzoyl) benzofuran hydrochloride), an anti-anginal drug which causes coronary dilatation and depresses myocardial oxygen consumption, was found to protect anaesthetized guinea-pigs against ouabain-induced ventricular fibrillation.2. A 5% (73.4 mM) solution of amiodarone had no local anaesthetic action on guinea-pig skin.3. Amiodarone, 20 mg/kg (29.4 mumol/kg) given daily for 6 weeks intraperitoneally, had no effect on the resting potential or action potential height, and only a small effect on the maximum rate of depolarization, of isolated rabbit atrial or ventricular muscle fibres as shown by intracellular recording. It caused a considerable prolongation of the action potential in both tissues.4. Simultaneous administration of thyroxine (5 mug; 6.26 nmol), given daily for 3 weeks intraperitoneally, prevented the prolongation by amiodarone of the duration of the action potential.5. Treatment of rabbits with 20 mg/kg of amiodarone daily intraperitoneally for 6 weeks had no effect on the weight of the thyroid gland, but was associated with a reduction in body growth rate.6. Treatment of rabbits with 10 mg/kg (60.3 mumol/kg) of potassium iodide (equal in its iodine content to that of 20 mg/kg of amiodarone), given daily for 6 weeks intraperitoneally, had no effect on body growth rate or the duration of cardiac action potentials.7. It was concluded that amiodarone had effects on cardiac action potentials similar to those which occur after thyroidectomy.

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