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

Purinergic receptor regulation of signal transduction in NCB-20 cells.

In the present paper, P1 and P2 purinergic receptors and their control of signal transduction pathways were investigated in NCB-20 cells. ATP elicited an increase in [Ca2+]i. The purinergic receptor subtype involved was identified by comparing the actions of a range of nucleotides. UTP was the most potent agonist in elevating [Ca2+]i, with an EC50 value of 6.2 +/- 0.5 microM. UTP, ATP (EC50, 17.3 +/- 1.5 microM), adenosine-5'-O-(3-thio)triphosphate (23 +/- 3 microM), and ITP (55 +/- 4 microM) exerted similar maximal effects. Other nucleotides tested, including beta, gamma-methylene-ATP and 2-methylthio-ATP, which are considered prototypic agonists for P2x and P2y receptors, respectively, were ineffective; in general, modifications in the ribose-triphosphate chain and substitution on the 2-position of the purines reduced the efficacy of nucleotides. This pharmacological characterization indicated that a putative P2u receptor mediates the [Ca2+]i elevation elicited by nucleotides in NCB-20 cells. The increase in [Ca2+]i originates from intracellular Ca2+ stores; blockade of Ca2+ entry does not affect the rise in [Ca2+]i. In contrast, pretreatment with the Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor thapsigargin or with bradykinin, a hormone that releases Ca2+ from inositol trisphosphate-sensitive stores, does preclude the increase in [Ca2+]i induced by ATP. ATP and UTP also transiently inhibit cAMP accumulation in the intact cell, presumably via a Ca(2+)-mediated mechanism. The finding of a P2u receptor in NCB-20 cells adds to a growing perception that P2 receptors are widely distributed. Besides the P2u receptor, NCB-20 cells express adenosine A2 receptors, coupled to stimulation of cAMP accumulation. The presence of both P1 and P2 purinergic receptors permits a sequential modulation of distinct second messenger levels associated with a common stimulus, ATP.[1]


  1. Purinergic receptor regulation of signal transduction in NCB-20 cells. Garritsen, A., Zhang, Y., Cooper, D.M. Mol. Pharmacol. (1992) [Pubmed]
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