Functional Regulation of ClC-3 in the Migration of Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells

Inositol Signaling Group, Laboratory of Signal Transduction, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, Research Triangle Park, NC.
Hypertension (Impact Factor: 6.48). 11/2012; 61(1). DOI: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.112.194209
Source: PubMed


Migration of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) into neointima contributes to atherosclerosis and restenosis. This migration requires coordinated plasmalemmal fluxes of water and ions. Here, we show that aortic VSMC migration depends on the regulation of transmembrane Cl(-) flux by ClC-3, a Cl(-) channel/transporter. The contribution of ClC-3 to plasmalemmal Cl(-) current was studied in VSMCs by electrophysiological recordings. Cl(-) current was negligible in cells perfused with 0 [Ca(2+)]. Raising intracellular [Ca(2+)] to 0.5 μM activated a Cl(-) current (I(Cl.Ca)), approximately half of which was eliminated on inhibition by KN-93 of calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II. I(Cl.Ca) was also halved by inositol-3,4,5,6-tetrakisphosphate, a cellular signal with the biological function of specifically preventing calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II from activating I(Cl.Ca). Gene disruption of ClC-3 reduced I(Cl.Ca) by 50%. Moreover, I(Cl.Ca) in the ClC-3 null VSMCs was not affected by either KN-93 or inositol-3,4,5,6-tetrakisphosphate. We conclude that I(Cl.Ca) is composed of 2 components, one is ClC-3 independent whereas the other is ClC-3 dependent, activated by calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II and inhibited by inositol-3,4,5,6-tetrakisphosphate. We also assayed VSMC migration in transwell assays. Migration was halved in ClC-3 null cells versus wild-type cells. In addition, inhibition of ClC-3 by niflumic acid, KN-93, or inositol-3,4,5,6-tetrakisphosphate each reduced cell migration in wild-type cells but not in ClC-3 null cells. These cell-signaling roles of ClC-3 in VSMC migration suggest new therapeutic approaches to vascular remodeling diseases.

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