Suppression of Ca2+ oscillations in cultured rat hepatocytes by chemical hypoxia

T. Kawanishi, A. L. Nieminen, B. Herman, J. J. Lemasters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


The model of ''chemical hypoxia'' with KCN plus iodoacetic acid mimics the ATP depletion and reductive stress of hypoxia. Here, we examined the effects of chemical hypoxia on cytosolic free Na+ and Ca2+ in single cultured rat hepatocytes by multiparameter digitized video microscopy and ratio imaging of sodium-binding furan indicator (SBFI) and Fura-2. Intracellular Na+ increased from about 10 mM to more than 100 mM after 20 min of chemical hypoxia, whereas cytosolic free Ca2+ remained virtually unchanged. In normoxic hepatocytes, phenylephrine (50 μM) and Arg-vasopressin (20-40 nM) induced Ca2+ oscillations in 70 and 40% of cells, respectively. These Ca2+ oscillations were suppressed after one spike following the onset of chemical hypoxia. Phenylephrine and vasopressin also increased inositol phosphate formation by 22 and 147%, respectively. This effect was suppressed by KCN plus iodoacetate. Intracellular acidosis is characteristic of chemical hypoxia. Intracellular acidosis induced by 40 mM Na-acetate suppressed Ca2+ oscillations but did not inhibit hormone-induced inositol phosphate formation. Cytosolic alkalinization also suppressed Ca2+ oscillations. However, prevention of intracellular acidosis with monensin (10 μM) did not prevent suppression of Ca2+ oscillations during chemical hypoxia. Mitochondrial depolarization with uncoupler did not change free Ca2+ levels during chemical hypoxia, indicating that mitochondria do not regulate free Ca2+ during chemical hypoxia. From these results, we conclude: 1) chemical hypoxia does not block Na+ influx across the plasma membrane; 2) Chemical hypoxia inhibits hormone-stimulated Ca2+ flux pathways across cellular membranes by two different mechanisms: (a) by ATP depletion, which disrupts hormone-myo-inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate coupling, and (b) by intracellular acidosis, which inhibits myo-inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate-stimulated Ca2+ release from intracellular stores; 3) during ATP depletion by chemical hypoxia, mitochondria do not take up Ca2+ to maintain cytosolic free Ca2+ at low concentrations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20062-20069
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number30
StatePublished - 1991


Dive into the research topics of 'Suppression of Ca<sup>2+</sup> oscillations in cultured rat hepatocytes by chemical hypoxia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this