We identified a Ca2+-sensitive cation channel in acutely dissociated epithelial cells from the endolymphatic sac (ES) of guinea pigs using the patch-clamp technique. Single-channel recordings showed that the cation channel had a conductance of 24.0 ± 1.3 pS (n= 8) in our standard solution. The relative ionic permeability of the channel was in the order K+= Na+ > Ca2+≫ Cl−. This channel was weakly voltage-dependent but was strongly activated by Ca2+ on the cytosolic side at a concentration of around 1 mm in inside-out excised patches. With cell-attached patches, however, the channel was activated by much lower Ca2+ concentrations. Treatment of the cells, under cell-attached configuration, with ionomycin (10 μm), carbonyl cyanide 3-chlorophenylhydrazone (CCCP, 20 μm), or ATP (1 mm), which increased intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i), activated the channel at an estimated [Ca2+]i from 0.6 μm to 10 μm. It is suggested that some activators of the channel were deteriorated or washed out during the formation of excised patches. Based on this Ca2+ sensitivity, we speculated that the channel contributes to the regulation of ionic balance and volume of the ES by absorbing Na+ under certain pathological conditions that will increase [Ca2+]i. This is the first report of single-channel recordings in endolymphatic sac epithelial cells.
The Journal of Membrane Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 15, 2001
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