First Advisor

Jonathan Abramson

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Physics






Delphinidin, Pelargonidin, Cardiovascular system -- Diseases, Ventricular tachycardia, Ryanodine -- Receptors, Calcium channels, Antioxidants, Anthocyanidins



Physical Description

1 online resource (viii, 102 p.) : ill.


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) claims more lives than any other disease in the world. Although numerous biological pathways share the blame, ventricular tachyarrhythmia (VT) is estimated to account for ~25% of all CVD deaths. A complete understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying VT is unknown but recent studies have linked VT to improper calcium handling in the heart (canine). The principle calcium regulator in the muscle cell is the calcium ion release channel (aka RyR). Numerous endogenous and exogenous compounds can affect the way the RyR regulates calcium. In particular, abnormal levels of oxidants (reactive oxygen species) can oxidize critical thiol groups on the RyR and modulate its activity. Interestingly, high levels of oxidants are also associated with numerous bodily disease states including cancers, muscle fatigue/failure, and CVD. In this thesis, two important dietary antioxidant compounds, the anthocyanidins pelargonidin and delphinidin, are evaluated for their effects on regulating the transport of calcium through the calcium release channel (RyR1) of the sarcoplasmic reticulum of skeletal muscle. Pelargonidin and delphinidin are structurally similar with delphinidin only differing from pelargonidin by the addition of two hydroxyl groups. Both compounds undergo time dependent structural changes in aqueous solutions at physiological pH and a mixture of more than four structures of each compound can be present in solution simultaneously. Pelargonidin and delphinidin show distinct differences in their calcium flux regulating effect on the RyR1. Delphinidin stimulates calcium flux and RyR1 activity where as pelargonidin can cause both inhibition and stimulation of the RyR1. The strength of stimulation and inhibition of calcium transport through the RyR by delphinidin and pelargonidin may be attributed to the structural and chemical changes in those compounds that occur in solutions near physiological pH and the subsequent chemical characteristics of the diverse set of structures that are simultaneously present in solution.


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Portland State University. Dept. of Physics

Persistent Identifier