Park SJ*, Kim KH, Jeon WY, Seo J, Han JM, Kim JS, Chung HM, Lee JH, Moon SH*, Kim HH*. Enzyme catalyzed electrostimulation of human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes influence contractility and synchronization. Biochemical Engineering Journal. 2017 July 123: 95109.
Electrical stimulation is a major physiological mediator that has long been implicated by electro-physiologists to have therapeutic benefits. Here, we investigated electrostimulation as a promising mean for micro-scale electrical stimulation to enhance human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes. This study demonstrated an easy-to-use bioelectrical stimulation system that could operate without a power unit. It utilizes enzymes to generate electron rich or poor conditions by exploiting the oxidation-reduction capability of glucose and oxygen. Glucose oxidase (−1.03 to −1.31 μA/cm2) stimulated cardiomyocytes showed increased calcium levels as a result of increased gap junctions which lead to faster synchronization and contractility within 12 days. The simplicity and biocompatibility of this approach could hasten drug screening, cell therapy, and electrophysiological research by making studies much more practical through the enhancement of functional human embryonic stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes.