We previously reported that the myocardial energetic state, as defined by the ratio of phosphocreatine to ATP (PCr/ATP), was preserved at baseline (BL) in a swine model of chronic myocardial ischemia with mild reduction of myocardial blood flow (MBF) 10 wk after the placement of an external constrictor on the left anterior descending coronary artery. It remains to be seen whether this stable energetic state is maintained at a longer-term follow-up. Hibernating myocardium (HB) was created in minipigs (n = 7) by the placement of an external constrictor (1.25 mm internal diameter) on the left anterior descending coronary artery. Function was assessed with MRI at regular intervals until 6 mo. At 6 mo, myocardial energetic in the HB was assessed by 31P-magnetic resonance spectrometry and myocardial oxygenation was examined from the deoxymyoglobin signal using 1H-magnetic resonance spectrometry during BL, coronary vasodilation with adenosine, and high cardiac workload with dopamine and dobutamine (DpDb). MBF was measured with radiolabeled microspheres. At BL, systolic thickening fraction was significantly lower in the HB compared with remote region (34.4 ± 9.4 vs. 50.1 ± 10.7, P = 0.006). This was associated with a decreased MBF in the HB compared with the remote region (0.73 ± 0.08 vs. 0.97 ± 0.07 ml·min−1·g, P = 0.03). The HB PCr/ATP at BL was normal. DpDb resulted in a significant increase in rate pressure product, which caused a twofold increase in MBF in the HB and a threefold increase in the remote region. The systolic thickening fraction increased with DpDb, which was significantly higher in the remote region than HB (P < 0.05). The high cardiac workload was associated with a significant reduction in the HB PCr/ATP (P < 0.02), but this response was similar to normal myocardium. Thus HB has stable BL myocardial energetic despite the reduction MBF and regional left ventricular function. More importantly, HB has a reduced contractile reserve but has a similar energetic response to high cardiac workload like normal myocardium
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