Indexed on: 26 Jul '05Published on: 26 Jul '05Published in: Trends in Cardiovascular Medicine
AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is activated during exercise and ischemia and is emerging as an important regulatory mechanism in the heart. AMPK promotes adenosine triphosphate-generating pathways, including glucose transport, glycolysis, and fatty acid oxidation, while inhibiting energy-consuming anabolic pathways. After ischemia-reperfusion, AMPK-deficient hearts from transgenic mice have severe left ventricular contractile dysfunction with increased apoptosis and necrosis. Mutations in the AMPKgamma(2) subunit lead to cardiac glycogen overload, Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, arrhythmias, and heart failure. This review focuses on the molecular mechanisms of activation and cardiovascular actions of AMPK in the heart.