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The secrets to the success of the Rush–Larsen method and its generalizations

Abstract:

One of the most popular methods for solving the ordinary differential equations (ODEs) that describe the dynamic behaviour of myocardial cell models is known as the Rush– Larsen (RL) method. Its popularity stems from its improved stability over integrators such as the forward Euler (FE) method along with its easy implementation. The RL method partitions the ODEs into two sets: one for the gating variables, which are treated by an exponential integrator, and another for the
remaining equations, which are treated by the FE method. The success of the RL method can be understood in terms of its relatively good stability when treating the gating variables. However, this feature would not be expected to be of benefit on cell models for which the stiffness is not captured by the gating equations. We demonstrate that this is indeed the case on a number of stiff cell models. We further propose a new partitioned method based on the combination of a first-order generalization of the RL method with the FE method. This new method leads to simulations of stiff cell models that are often one or two orders of magnitude faster than the original RL method.

Authors: Megan E. Marsh, Saeed Torabi Ziaratgahi, Raymond J. Spiteri

Download: MarshEtAl2013