MadSci Network: General Biology

Re: How and why does aspirin affect the heart rate of Daphnia?

Date: Wed Jan 26 08:08:55 2000
Posted By: Terry Hebert, Faculty, Universite de Montreal, Biochemistry, Montréal Heart Institute
Area of science: General Biology
ID: 947672259.Gb

Dear Rakesh,
	That's an interesting question. Aspirin is often used to treat patients 
who have had a heart attack or who suffer from partial blockages of the 
coronary blood vessels (angina) because it can prevent blood clotting which 
often makes these conditions potentially fatal. It does this by inhibiting 
an enzyme called cyclo-oxygenase which is involved in the clotting cascade. 
As for the direct effects of aspirin on heart rate, there hasn't been a 
great deal of research in this area. Some reports I've seen suggest that 
aspirin can lower heart rate in different disease states and one report 
shows that it has no effect itself on heart rate. Thus, the jury is still 
out about aspirin's effects on heart rate. I suppose you could try some 
experiments yourself on Daphnia...

Good luck,


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