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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2009 May;1788(5):1168-75. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2009.02.006. Epub 2009 Feb 20.

Regulation of intracellular calcium concentration by nanosecond pulsed electric fields.

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  • 1Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA, USA.


Changes in [Ca(2+)](i) response of individual Jurkat cells to nanosecond pulsed electric fields (nsPEFs) of 60 ns and field strengths of 25, 50, and 100 kV/cm were investigated. The magnitude of the nsPEF-induced rise in [Ca(2+)](i) was dependent on the electric field strength. With 25 and 50 kV/cm, the [Ca(2+)](i) response was due to the release of Ca(2+) from intracellular stores and occurred in less than 18 ms. With 100 kV/cm, the increase in [Ca(2+)](i) was due to both internal release and to influx across the plasma membrane. Spontaneous changes in [Ca(2+)](i) exhibited a more gradual increase over several seconds. The initial, pulse-induced [Ca(2+)](i) response initiates at the poles of the cell with respect to electrode placement and co-localizes with the endoplasmic reticulum. The results suggest that nsPEFs target both the plasma membrane and subcellular membranes and that one of the mechanisms for Ca(2+) release may be due to nanopore formation in the endoplasmic reticulum.

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