Repetitive transient rises in cytoplasmic free calcium in hormone-stimulated hepatocytes

Abstract

In the stressed animal, the vasoactive hormones vasopressin and angiotensin-II and the neurotransmitter noradrenaline induce liver cells to release glucose from glycogen. The intracellular signal that links the cell-surface receptors for noradrenaline (α1) and vasoactive peptides to activation of glycogenolysis is known to be a rise in the cytoplasmic concentration of free calcium ions (free Ca)1–3. The receptors for these agonists induce the hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate, a minor plasmalemma lipid, to produce inositol trisphosphate and diacylglycerol3–5. Inositol trisphosphate has been shown to mobilize intracellular calcium in hepatocytes3,6–8. We show here, by means of aequorin measurements in single, isolated rat hepatocytes, that the free Ca response to these agonists consists of a series of transients. Each transient rose within 3 s to a peak free Ca of at least 600 nM and had a duration of approximately 7 s. The transients were repeated at intervals of 0.3–4 min, depending on agonist concentration. Between transients, free Ca returned to the resting level of ˜200nM. Clearly, the mechanisms controlling free Ca in hepatocytes are more complex than hitherto suspected.

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Woods, N., Cuthbertson, K. & Cobbold, P. Repetitive transient rises in cytoplasmic free calcium in hormone-stimulated hepatocytes. Nature 319, 600–602 (1986). https://doi.org/10.1038/319600a0

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