Despite aggressive fluid resuscitation and topical antimicrobial therapy after burn trauma, sepsis frequently results from the loss of dermis; thus sepsis and resultant multiorgan failure are a major cause of death in the burn unit. Studies from the PI's lab and others' have shown that burn trauma and sepsis independently alter cardiocirculatory performance, and recent studies suggest that myocardial abnormalities after burn, trauma or sepsis are related to intracellular accumulation of calcium with subsequent cellular injury and dysfunction. Although this field has grown rapidly, much is still unknown about the cellular mechanisms underlying cardiac dysfunction after either trauma or sepsis. The PI's group have focused their attention on a clinically relevant model of burn injury complicated by sepsis (intratracheal administration of S. pneumoniae administered 24 hours postburn) and have shown progressive cardiocirculatory dysfunction in this two-hit model.
Specific Aim 1 a will determine if burn/sepsis exacerbates the increased [Ca2+] and [Na2+] shown to occur after burn alone and will determine the contribution of altered Na+/Ca2+ to cardiac contractile dysfunction.
Specific aim 1 b will determine the contribution of transient cellular acidosis and altered H+/Na+ exchange to increased [Na2+], and whether increased [Na+] in turn promotes Na+/Ca2+ exchange in [Ca2+] overload.
Specific Aim 2 will determine the contribution of burn/ sepsis-mediated alterations in SR Ca2+ handling (SR Ca2+ efflux, Ca2+-ATPase activity, SERCA, and SR Ca content) to cellular Ca2+ and cardiac contractile deficits and determine the contribution of burn/sepsis induced myofilament Ca2+ insensitivity to cardiac contractile dysfunction. Studies in Specific Aim 3 will examine the role of PKC activation in intracellular Na+/Ca2+ accumulation and cardiac contractile dysfunction in burn sepsis. Studies in Specific Aim 4 will determine the contribution of increased [Ca2+] and reactive oxygen species to apoptosis in burn/sepsis and further determine the contribution of apoptosis to burn/sepsis-induced ionic derangements as well as cardiac contractile dysfunction. Only by understanding the cellular events involved in the postburn inflammatory cascade can adequate prevention and treatment modalities be designed to improve outcome.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Surgery, Anesthesiology and Trauma Study Section (SAT)
Program Officer
Somers, Scott D
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
University of Texas Sw Medical Center Dallas
Schools of Medicine
United States
Zip Code
Huebinger, Ryan M; Gomez, Ruben; McGee, Daphne et al. (2010) Association of mitochondrial allele 4216C with increased risk for sepsis-related organ dysfunction and shock after burn injury. Shock 33:19-23
Zang, Qun S; Maass, David L; Wigginton, Jane G et al. (2010) Burn serum causes a CD14-dependent mitochondrial damage in primary cardiomyocytes. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 298:H1951-8
Zang, Qun; Maass, David L; Tsai, Sue Jean et al. (2007) Cardiac mitochondrial damage and inflammation responses in sepsis. Surg Infect (Larchmt) 8:41-54
Horton, Jureta W (2007) A model of myocardial inflammation and dysfunction in burn complicated by sepsis. Shock 28:326-33
Tan, Jing; Maass, David L; White, D Jean et al. (2007) Effects of burn injury on myocardial signaling and cytokine secretion: Possible role of PKC. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 292:R887-96
Horton, Jureta W; Tan, Jing; White, D Jean et al. (2007) Burn injury decreases myocardial Na-K-ATPase activity: role of PKC inhibition. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 293:R1684-92
Zang, Qun; Maass, David L; White, Jean et al. (2007) Cardiac mitochondrial damage and loss of ROS defense after burn injury: the beneficial effects of antioxidant therapy. J Appl Physiol 102:103-12
Horton, Jureta; Maass, David; White, Jean et al. (2006) Effect of aspiration pneumonia-induced sepsis on post-burn cardiac inflammation and function in mice. Surg Infect (Larchmt) 7:123-35
Horton, Jureta W; Maass, David L; Ballard-Croft, Cherry (2005) Rho-associated kinase modulates myocardial inflammatory cytokine responses. Shock 24:53-8
Sikes, Patricia J; Zhao, Piyu; Maass, David L et al. (2005) Sodium/hydrogen exchange activity in sepsis and in sepsis complicated by previous injury: 31P and 23Na NMR study. Crit Care Med 33:605-15

Showing the most recent 10 out of 18 publications