The metabolic effects of the hypoglycaemic agent pent-4-enoate were studied in isolated, beating or potassium-arrested rat hearts. The addition of 0.8mM-pent-4-enoate to the perfusion fluid increased O2 consumption by 76% in the arrested heart and by 14% in the beating heart; the concentration ratio of phosphocreatine/creatine increase concomitantly by 47% and 27% respectively. Perfusion of the heart with pent-4-enoate resulted in a 30-fold increase in the concentration of the pool of tricarboxylic acid-cycle intermediates in the tissue, about 90% of this increase being due to malate. The sum of the concentrations of the myocardial free amino acids remained virtually unchanged during the accumulation of the tricarboxylic acid-cycle intermediates. It was concluded that pent-4-enoate can be effectively metabolized in the myocardium and that its metabolism probably proceeds via propionyl-CoA, since pent-4-enoate reproduces many of the metabolic characteristics of propionate in the cardiac muscle. The accumulation of the tricarboxylic acid-cycle intermediates is probably due to carboxylation of propionyl-CoA. The response pattern of the metabolite concentrations in the cardiac muscle is quite different from that in the liver, in which decrease of the concentrations of the tricarboxylic acid-cycle intermediates has been observed previously [Williamson, Rostand & Peterson (1970) J. Biol. Chem. 245, 3242-3251].
- © 1978 London: The Biochemical Society