The defects identified in the mechanical activity of the hearts from type 1 diabetic animals include alteration of Ca2+ signaling via changes in critical processes that regulate intracellular Ca2+ concentration. These defects result partially from a dysfunction of cardiac ryanodine receptor calcium release channel (RyR2). The present study was designed to determine whether the properties of the Ca2+ sparks might provide insight into the role of RyR2 in the altered Ca2+ signaling in cardiomyocytes from diabetic animals when they were analyzed together with Ca2+ transients. Basal Ca2+ level as well as Ca2+ -spark frequency of cardiomyoctes isolated from 5-week streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats significantly increased with respect to aged-matched control rats. Ca2+ transients exhibited significantly reduced amplitude and prolonged time courses as well as depressed Ca2+ loading of sarcoplasmic reticulum. in diabetic rats. Spatio-temporal properties of the Ca2+ sparks in cardiomyocytes isolated from diabetic rats were also significantly altered to being almost parallel to the changes of Ca2+ transients. In addition, RyR2 from diabetic rat hearts were hyperphosphorylated and protein levels of both RyR2 and FKBP12.6 depleted. These data show that STZ-induced diabetic rat hearts exhibit altered local Ca2+ signaling with increased basal Ca2+ level.