We recently reported that ATP is released from Necturus erythrocytes via a conductive pathway during hypotonic swelling and that extracellular ATP potentiates regulatory volume decrease (RVD). This study was designed to determine whether extracellular ATP exerts its effect via a purinoceptor. This was accomplished using three different experimental approaches: 1) hemolysis studies to examine osmotic fragility, 2) a Coulter counter to assess RVD, and 3) the whole-cell patch-clamp technique to measure membrane currents. We found extracellular ATP and ATPγS, two P2 agonists, decreased osmotic fragility, enhanced cell volume recovery in response to hypotonic shock, and increased whole-cell currents. In addition, 2-methylthio-ATP potentiated RVD. In contrast, UTP, α,β-methylene-ATP, and 2′-& 3′-O-(4-benzoyl-benzoyl) adenosine 5′-triphosphate and the P1 agonist adenosine had no effect regardless of experimental approach. Furthermore, the P2 antagonist suramin increased osmotic fragility, inhibited RVD, and reduced whole-cell conductance in swollen cells. Consistent with a previous study that indicated cell swelling activates a K+ conductance, suramin had no effect in the presence of gramicidin (a cationophore used to maintain a high K+ permeability). We also found the P2 antagonist pyridoxal-5-phosphate-6-azophenyl-2′4-disulfonic acid (PPADS) increased osmotic fragility; however, reactive blue 2 and the P1 antagonists caffeine and theophylline had no effect. Our results show that extracellular ATP activated a P2 receptor in Necturus erythrocytes during hypotonic swelling, which in turn potentiated RVD by stimulating K+ efflux. Pharmacological evidence suggested the presence of a P2X receptor subtype.
The Journal of Membrane Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 1, 2001
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