Is calmodulin involved in the regulation of gap junction permeability?
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The cell-to-cell channels of gap junctions mediate the direct exchange of ions and small metabolites between neighboring cells. A number of studies have shown that these channels close when the intracellular free calcium or hydrogen concentration increases, the result being cell-to-cell uncoupling. Since most of the calcium-activated biological phenomena are mediated by calmodulin (CaM), an obvious question is whether or not CaM is involved in the mechanism of cell coupling regulation. Data from the present study, showing the inhibitory effects of a calmodulin blocker on electrical uncoupling in Xenopus embryo cells, suggest a possible CaM participation in the uncoupling mechanism.
Key wordsGap junctions calmodulin trifluoperazine Xenopus embryo cell coupling
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