Cellular and molecular life sciences : CMLS

Methylphenidate-triggered ROS generation promotes caveolae-mediated transcytosis via Rac1 signaling and c-Src-dependent caveolin-1 phosphorylation in human brain endothelial cells.

PMID 27376435


Methylphenidate (MPH) is an amphetamine-like stimulant commonly prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Despite its widespread use, the cellular/molecular effects of MPH remain elusive. Here, we report a novel direct role of MPH on the regulation of macromolecular flux through human brain endothelial cells (ECs). MPH significantly increased caveolae-mediated transcytosis of horseradish peroxidase through ECs without affecting paracellular permeability. Using FRET-based live cell imaging, together with pharmacological inhibitors and lentiviral-mediated shRNA knockdown, we demonstrate that MPH promoted ROS generation via activation of Rac1-dependent NADPH oxidase (NOX) and c-Src activation at the plasma membrane. c-Src in turn was shown to mediate the phosphorylation of caveolin-1 (Cav1) on Tyr(14) leading to enhanced caveolae formation and transendothelial transport. Accordingly, the inhibition of Cav1 phosphorylation by overexpression of a phosphodefective Cav1(Y14F) mutant or knocking down Cav1 expression abrogated MPH-induced transcytosis. In addition, both vitamin C and inhibition of NOX blocked MPH-triggered vesicular transport. This study, therefore, identifies Rac1/NOX/c-Src-dependent signaling in MPH-induced increase in transendothelial permeability of brain endothelial cell monolayers via caveolae-mediated transcytosis.