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J Cell Biochem. 2004 Apr 1;91(5):938-50.

Cellular injury induces activation of MAPK via P2Y receptors.

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  • 1Departments of Biochemistry and Ophthalmology, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts 02118, USA.


Wound healing is a complex process that involves cell communication, migration, proliferation, and changes in gene expression. One of the first events after injury is the rapid release of Ca(2+) that propagates as a wave to neighboring cells (Klepeis et al. [2001]: J. Cell. Sci. 114:4185-4195). Our goal was to examine the signaling events induced by cellular injury and identify extracellular molecules that induce the activation of extracellular signal responsive kinase (ERK) (p42/44). In this study we demonstrated that injury induced ERK1/2 activation occurred within 2 min and was negligible by 15 min. Treatment of unwounded cells with wound media caused activation of ERK that could be inhibited by apyrase III. Stimulation with epidermal growth factor (EGF) did not mimic the injury response and it was not detected in the wound media. To identify the active component, size fractionation was performed and factor(s) less than 3 kDa that induced the release of Ca(2+) and activation of ERK1/2 were identified. Activity was not altered by heat denaturation, incubation with proteinase K but it was lost by treatment with apyrase. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP), uridine triphosphate (UTP), adenosine diphosphate (ADP), and uridine diphosphate (UDP) promoted activation by 2 min with similar profiles as that generated by injury. Preincubation with phospholipase C inhibitor, U73122, inhibited activation that was induced by injury and/or nucleotides. Lack of activation by alpha-beta-methylATP (alpha, beta-MeATP) and beta-gamma-methylATP (beta, gamma-MeATP) to purinergic (P)2X receptors further indicated that activation occurs via P2Y and not P2X purinergic receptors. These results indicate that injury-induced activation of ERK1/2 is mediated by a P2Y signaling pathway.

Copyright 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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