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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Cocaine and its derivatives blunt neutrophil functions without influencing phosphorylation of a 47-kilodalton component of the reduced nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase.

Cocaine and its derivatives blunted responses of neutrophils (cell/cell aggregation, up-regulation of the receptor for C3bi ( CR3, CD11b/CD18), generation of superoxide anion (O2-) and degranulation to various stimuli. The order of potency of these agents was the same as that for local anesthesia: tetracaine greater than bupivacaine greater than cocaine greater than lidocaine. Neutrophil aggregation elicited by the chemoattractant FMLP (10(-7) M) was inhibited by cocaine (10 mM) to 13.6 +/- 6% of control (p less than 0.002); the IC50 was approximately 4 mM. Cocaine and the other local anesthetics not only inhibited the upregulation of CR3 and O2- generation, but also blocked degranulation of cytochalasin B-treated cells. Cocaine (10 mM) reduced beta-glucuronidase and lysozyme secretion to 4.3 +/- 0.7 and 13 +/- 2.2% controls, respectively; its IC50 was 4 mM. Local anesthetics added after ligand/receptor engagement (FMLP) interrupted aggregation and halted generation of O2-. Moreover, local anesthetics rapidly inhibited aggregation, O2- generation, and degranulation elicited by PMA (1 microgram/ml) or the Ca ionophore A23187 (10 microM): the effects of cocaine could therefore not be attributed to unique actions at the FMLP receptor. Peak levels of intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca]i) at 5 to 10 s, and levels of [Ca]i 120 s after FMLP in Fura 2-loaded cells were significantly lower in cells treated with lidocaine, findings that could be explained by enhanced 45Ca2+ efflux from neutrophils. In cells loaded with bis(carboxyethyl)carboxyfluorescine (pH indicator) local anesthetics failed to affect the initial FMLP-induced (0 to 15 s) drop of pHi but inhibited the later (120 s) realkalinization of the cytosol (lidocaine, bupivacaine). Most remarkably, autoradiographs of SDS gels prepared from stimulated, 32P-labeled neutrophils treated with local anesthetics showed no difference from resting cells, either with respect to patterns of phosphorylation and dephosphorylation or their kinetics. Labeling of a 47-kDa protein, a component of the reduced nicotinamide-adenine dinucleotide phosphate-oxidase system, was unchanged. The effects of local anesthetics, which blunt neutrophil responses without affecting protein phosphorylation, suggest that protein phosphorylation is an insufficient signal for neutrophil activation. Inasmuch as cocaine and its derivatives affect cell functions at sites distal to activation of protein kinase C, these agents should prove useful in uncoupling protein phosphorylation from functional responses.[1]


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