Abnormal cardiac function in the streptozotocin-diabetic rat: Changes in active and passive properties of the left ventricle

Sheldon E. Litwin, Thomas E. Raya, Peter G. Anderson, Sherry Daugherty, Steven Goldman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

126 Scopus citations


To provide an integrated assessment of changes in systolic and diastolic function in diabetic rats, we measured conscious hemodynamics and performed ex vivo analysis of left ventricular passive-elastic properties. Rats given streptozotocin (STZ) 65 mg/kg i.v. (n = 14) were compared with untreated agematched controls (n = 15) and rats treated with insulin after administration of STZ (H = 11). After 7 d, diabetic rats exhibited decreases in heart rate and peak developed left ventricular (LV) pressure during aortic occlusion. After 26 d of diabetes there were significant decreases in resting LV systolic pressure, developed pressure, and maximal +dP/dt, whereas LV end-diastolic pressure increased and the time constant of LV relaxation was prolonged. The passive LV pressure-volume relationship was progressively shifted away from the pressure axis, and the overall chamber stiffness constant was decreased. However, "operating chamber stiffness" calculated at end-diastolic pressure was increased at 7 d, and unchanged at 26 d. LV cavity/wall volume and end-diastolic volume were increased after 26 d of diabetes. Myocardial stiffness was unchanged at both time intervals. All of the above abnormalities were reversed by the administration of insulin. We conclude that the hemodynamic and passive-elastic changes that occur in diabetic rats represent an early dilated cardiomyopathy which is reversible with insulin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)481-488
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 1990


  • Diabetes
  • Diastole
  • Passive-elastic
  • Systolic function
  • Ventricular relaxation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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