Conductivity: An issue for the application of the conductance catheter system in mice

B. Yang, D. F. Larson, R. Kelley, J. Beischel, R. R. Watson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Background: A new conductance catheter system (CCS) has been developed to analyze in vivo left ventricular pressure-volume relationships in mice. As with other CCS designs, this murine system quantifies the left ventricular volume by measurement of the conductance (G) of the blood which is proportional to its conductivity (σ). One critical issue specific for the mouse model is the dilution of the blood with intravenous infusion of saline solutions and the resulting effect on σ. Therefore, the objective of this study was to define the saline volumes that could be infused in the mouse without significantly affecting the blood σ or the accuracy of the ventricular volumetric measurements obtained with the CCS. Methods: An in vitro system was developed to determine the effect of changes in σ on G. Seven cylindrical volumes in a plastic block modeling raw conductance volume signals (2 to 5 mm) were filled with mouse whole fresh blood diluted with 6% Hetastarch in 0.9% saline to final concentrations of 0%, 15% (5:1), 25% (3:1), 50% (1:1) and 100% Hetastarch solution. The conductance of each solution was measured by the CCS and plotted against the corresponding volume. Mice were infused with 200, 400, or 800 μl of 6% Hetastarch solution, equivalent to in vitro hemodilutions of 8%, 15%, and 25%, respectively. Pressure-volume loop analysis was performed with the CCS subsequent to the infusions. Results: The in vitro model demonstrated that the σ of 6% Hetastarch solution and 0.9% saline were 2.0 and 2.4 times greater, respectively, than that of murine fresh whole blood (p < 0.001). In both the in vitro and in vivo models, dilution of whole blood with Hetastarch in 0.9% saline by 15% or less did not significantly alter σ nor the pressure-volume loop parameters. We conclude that infusion of saline solutions in the mouse model should be restricted to 400 μl or less for the acquisition of accurate measurements of ventricular contractile properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-60
Number of pages4
JournalCardiovascular Engineering
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2000


  • Conductance catheter
  • Conductivity
  • Mice
  • Pressure volume relationship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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