Activation of G protein-coupled estrogen receptor induces endothelium-independent relaxation of coronary artery smooth muscle.
ABSTRACT Estrogens can either relax or contract arteries via rapid, nongenomic mechanisms involving classic estrogen receptors (ER). In addition to ERα and ERβ, estrogen may also stimulate G protein-coupled estrogen receptor 1 (GPER) in nonvascular tissue; however, a potential role for GPER in coronary arteries is unclear. The purpose of this study was to determine how GPER activity influenced coronary artery reactivity. In vitro isometric force recordings were performed on endothelium-denuded porcine arteries. These studies were augmented by RT-PCR and single-cell patch-clamp experiments. RT-PCR and immunoblot studies confirmed expression of GPER mRNA and protein, respectively, in smooth muscle from either porcine or human coronary arteries. G-1, a selective GPER agonist, produced a concentration-dependent relaxation of endothelium-denuded porcine coronary arteries in vitro. This response was attenuated by G15, a GPER-selective antagonist, or by inhibiting large-conductance calcium-activated potassium (BK(Ca)) channels with iberiotoxin, but not by inhibiting NO signaling. Last, single-channel patch-clamp studies demonstrated that G-1 stimulates BK(Ca) channel activity in intact smooth muscle cells from either porcine or human coronary arteries but had no effect on channels isolated in excised membrane patches. In summary, GPER activation relaxes coronary artery smooth muscle by increasing potassium efflux via BK(Ca) channels and requires an intact cellular signaling mechanism. This novel action of estrogen-like compounds may help clarify some of the controversy surrounding the vascular effects of estrogens.
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ABSTRACT: The large-conductance voltage- and Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channel (BKCa) is an important regulator of membrane excitability in a wide variety of cells and tissues. In myometrial smooth muscle, activation of BKCa plays essential roles in buffering contractility to maintain uterine quiescence during pregnancy and in the transition to a more contractile state at the onset of labor. Multiple mechanisms of modulation have been described to alter BKCa channel activity, expression, and cellular localization. In the myometrium, BKCa is regulated by alternative splicing, protein targeting to the plasma membrane, compartmentation in membrane microdomains, and posttranslational modifications. In addition, interaction with auxiliary proteins (i.e., β1- and β2-subunits), association with G-protein coupled receptor signaling pathways, such as those activated by adrenergic and oxytocin receptors, and hormonal regulation provide further mechanisms of variable modulation of BKCa channel function in myometrial smooth muscle. Here, we provide an overview of these mechanisms of BKCa channel modulation and provide a context for them in relation to myometrial function.Frontiers in physiology. 01/2014; 5:289.
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ABSTRACT: Coronary heart disease (CHD) continues to be the greatest mortality risk factor in the developed world. Estrogens are recognized to have great therapeutic potential to treat CHD and other cardiovascular diseases; however, a significant array of potentially debilitating side effects continues to limit their use. Moreover, recent clinical trials have indicated that long-term postmenopausal estrogen therapy may actually be detrimental to cardiovascular health. An exciting new development is the finding that the more recently discovered G-protein-coupled estrogen receptor (GPER) is expressed in coronary arteries-both in coronary endothelium and in smooth muscle within the vascular wall. Accumulating evidence indicates that GPER activation dilates coronary arteries and can also inhibit the proliferation and migration of coronary smooth muscle cells. Thus, selective GPER activation has the potential to increase coronary blood flow and possibly limit the debilitating consequences of coronary atherosclerotic disease. This review will highlight what is currently known regarding the impact of GPER activation on coronary arteries and the potential signaling mechanisms stimulated by GPER agonists in these vessels. A thorough understanding of GPER function in coronary arteries may promote the development of new therapies that would help alleviate CHD, while limiting the potentially dangerous side effects of estrogen therapy.World journal of cardiology. 06/2014; 6(6):367-75.
Article: Estrogen and the Female Heart.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Estrogen has a plethora of effects in the cardiovascular system. Studies of estrogen and the heart span human clinical trials and basic cell and molecular investigations. Greater understanding of cell and molecular responses to estrogens can provide further insights into the findings of clinical studies. Differences in expression and cellular/intracellular distribution of the two main receptors, estrogen receptor (ER) α and β, are thought to account for the specificity and differences in responses to estrogen. Much remains to be learned in this area, but cellular distribution within the cardiovascular system is becoming clearer. Identification of GPER as a third ER has introduced further complexity to the system. 17β-estradiol (E2), the most potent human estrogen, clearly has protective properties activating a signaling cascade leading to cellular protection and also influencing expression of the protective heat shock proteins (HSP). E2 protects the heart from ischemic injury in basic studies, but the picture is more involved in the whole organism and clinical studies. Here the complexity of E2's widespread effects comes into play and makes interpretation of findings more challenging. Estrogen loss occurs primarily with aging, but few studies have used aged models despite clear evidence of differences between the response to E2 deficiency in adult and aged animals. Thus more work is needed focusing on the effects of aging vs. estrogen loss on the cardiovascular system.Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology 01/2014; · 4.04 Impact Factor