The Journal of pharmacology and experimental therapeutics

Muscarinic receptor stimulation of D-aspartate uptake into human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells is attenuated by hypoosmolarity.

PMID 20080957


In addition to its function as an excitatory neurotransmitter, glutamate plays a major role as an osmolyte within the central nervous system (CNS). Accordingly, mechanisms that regulate glutamate release and uptake are of physiological importance not only during conditions in which cell volume remains constant but also when cells are subjected to hypoosmotic stress. In the present study, the ability of muscarinic cholinergic receptors (mAChRs) to regulate the uptake of glutamate (monitored as D-aspartate) into human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells under isotonic or hypotonic conditions has been examined. In isotonic media, agonist activation of mAChRs resulted in a significant increase (250-300% of control) in the uptake of D-aspartate and, concurrently, a cellular redistribution of the excitatory amino acid transporter 3 (EAAT3) to the plasma membrane. mAChR-mediated increases in d-aspartate uptake were potently blocked by the EAAT3 inhibitor l-beta-threo-benzyl-aspartate. In hypotonic media, the ability of mAChR activation to facilitate D-aspartate uptake was significantly attenuated (40-50%), and the cellular distribution of EAAT3 was disrupted. Reduction of mAChR-stimulated D-aspartate uptake under hypoosmotic conditions could be fully reversed upon re-exposure of the cells to isotonic media. Under both isotonic and hypotonic conditions, mAChR-mediated increases in D-aspartate uptake depended on cytoskeletal integrity, protein kinase C and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase activities, and the availability of intracellular Ca2+. In contrast, dependence on extracellular Ca2+ was observed only under isotonic conditions. The results suggest that, although the uptake of D-aspartate into SH-SY5Y cells is enhanced after mAChR activation, this process is markedly attenuated by hypoosmolarity.

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Oxotremorine M, solid