Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 32, Issue 1, pp 207–211 | Cite as

Parathyroid hormone as a calcium ionophore in bone cells: Tests of specificity

  • Robert Marcus
  • Francine B. Orner
Laboratory Investigation


Parathyroid Hormone (PTH) stimulates calcium entry into bone cells in vitro, and this effect has been proposed to mediate the actions of PTH on bone. Using cells harvested from infant rat calvaria by collagenase digestion, we evaluated the sensitivity and specificity of this phenomenon. Calcium uptake was temperture dependent, and was increased by PTH over the concentration range 0.01 to 0.50 units/ml. A series of nonhormonal peptides obtained during the purification of a single batch of PTH was found to stimulate calcium uptake. In addition, isoproterenol, ACTH, calcitonin, and glucagon stimulated calcium uptake. In no case, however, was the degree of stimulation as great as that produced by biologically active PTH. Prostaglandins are also potent resorbers of bone, and a series of prostaglandins also stimulated calcium uptake into bone cells. These results are compatible with a calcium ionophore model of PTH and prostaglandin action on bone.

Key words

PTH Bone cells Calcium uptake 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Peck, W.A., Klahr, S.: Cyclic nucleotides in bone and mineral metabolism, Adv. Cyclic Nucleotide Res.11:89–130, 1979PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Borle, A.B.: Kinetic analyses of calcium movements in cell cultures: III. Effects of calcium and parathyroid hormone in kidney cells, J. Gen. Physiol.55:163–186, 1970CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Parsons, J.A., Robinson, C.J.: Calcium shift into bone causing transient hypocalcemia after injection of parathyroid hormone, Nature230:581–582, 1971CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Dziak, R., Stern, P.H.: Calcium transport in isolated bone cells. III. Effects of parathyroid hormone and cyclic 3′,5′-AMP, Endocrinology97:1281–1287, 1975PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Dziak, R., Stern, P.H.: Response of fetal rat bone cells and bone organ cultures to the ionophore A23187, Calcif. Tissue Res.22:137–147, 1976CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Wong, G.L., Kent, G.N., Ku, K.Y., Cohn, D.V.: The interaction of parathormone and calcium on the hormone-regulated synthesis of hyaluronic acid and citrate decarboxylation in isolated bone cells, Endocrinology103:2274–2282, 1978PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Ivey, J.L., Wright, D.R., Tashjian, A.H., Jr.: Bone resorption in organ culture. Inhibition by the divalent cation ionophores A23187 and X-5378, J. Clin. Invest.58:1327–1338, 1976PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Marcus, R., Aurbach, G.D.: Bioassay of parathyroid hormone in vitro with a stable preparation of adenyl cyclase from rat kidney, Endocrinology85:801–810, 1969PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Berridge, M.J.: The interaction of Cyclic Nucleotides and calcium in the control of cellular activity, Adv. Cyclic Nucleotide Res.6:1–98, 1975PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Borle, A.B., Uchikawa, T.: Effects of adenosine 3′,5′-monophosphate, dibutyryl adenosine 3′,5′-monophosphate, aminophylline and imidazole on renal cellular calcium metabolism, Endocrinology104:122–129, 1979PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Wrenn, R.W., Biddulph, D.M.: Parathyroid hormone-induced calcium efflux from isolated renal cortical tubules: evidence for cyclic AMP mediation, Mol. Cell. Endocrinol.15:29–40, 1979CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Klein, D.C., Raisz, L.B.: Prostaglandins: stimulation of bone resorption in tissue culture, Endocrinology86:1436–1440, 1970PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Marcus, R., Orner, F.: Cyclic AMP production in infant rat calvaria in vitro: interaction of prostaglandins with parathyroid hormone, Endocrinology101:1570–1578, 1977PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kirtland, S.J., Baum, H.: Prostaglandin E1 may act as a “calcium ionophore,” Nature [New Biol.]236:47–49, 1972CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Horrobin, D.F.: Interactions between prostaglandins and calcium: the importance of bell-shaped dose-response curves, Prostaglandins14:667–677, 1977CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Dietrich, J.W., Goodson, J.M., Raisz, L.G.: Stimulation of bone resorption by various prostaglandins in organ culture. Prostaglandins10:231–240, 1975CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Luben, R.A., Wong, G.L., Cohn, D.V.: Biochemical characterization with parathormone and calcitonin of isolated bone cells: provisional identification of osteoclasts and osteoblasts, Endocrinology99:526–534, 1976PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Marcus
    • 1
    • 2
  • Francine B. Orner
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of MedicineStanford University School of MedicineUSA
  2. 2.the Geriatric ResearchEducation and Clinical Center, VA Medical CenterPalo AltoUSA

Personalised recommendations