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

Ca2+ homeostasis in unstimulated platelets.

Unstimulated platelets maintain a low cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration and a steep plasma membrane Ca2+ gradient. The mechanisms that are required have not been completely defined. In the present studies, 45Ca2+ was used to examine the kinetics of Ca2+ exchange in intact unstimulated platelets. Quin2 was used to measure the cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration. Under steady-state conditions, the maximum rate of Ca2+ exchange across the platelet plasma membrane, 2 pmol/10(8) platelets/min, was observed at extracellular free Ca2+ concentrations 20-fold less than in plasma. Two intracellular exchangeable Ca2+ pools were identified. The size of the more rapidly exchanging pool (t 1/2, 17 min) and the cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration were relatively unaffected by large changes in the extracellular Ca2+ concentration. In contrast, the size of the more slowly exchanging Ca2+ pool (t 1/2, 300 min) varied with the extracellular Ca2+ concentration, which suggests that it is physically as well as kinetically distinct from the rapidly exchangeable Ca2+ pool. The locations of the Ca2+ pools were determined by differential permeabilization of 45Ca2+-loaded platelets with digitonin. 45Ca2+ in the rapidly exchanging pool was released with lactate dehydrogenase, which suggests that it is located in the cytosol. 45Ca2+ in the slowly exchanging pool was released with markers for both the dense tubular system and mitochondria, but inhibition of mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake with carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone had no effect on the size of the slowly exchangeable Ca2+ pool or the cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration. In contrast, addition of metabolic inhibitors (KCN plus carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone plus deoxyglucose) or trifluoperazine caused a decrease in the size of the slowly exchangeable Ca2+ pool and an increase in the cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration. These observations suggest that Ca2+ homeostasis in unstimulated platelets is maintained by limiting Ca2+ influx from plasma, actively promoting Ca2+ efflux, and sequestering Ca2+ within an internal site, which is most likely the dense tubular system and not mitochondria.[1]


  1. Ca2+ homeostasis in unstimulated platelets. Brass, L.F. J. Biol. Chem. (1984) [Pubmed]
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