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Hypertension. 2011 Aug;58(2):325-31. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.111.172080. Epub 2011 Jun 27.

Dopamine receptor type 5 in the primary cilia has dual chemo- and mechano-sensory roles.

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  • 1University of Toledo, Health Science Campus, HEB 274, 3000 Arlington Ave, MS 1015, Toledo, OH 43614, USA.


Polycystic kidney disease is characterized by cardiovascular irregularities, including hypertension. Dopamine, a circulating hormone, is implicated in essential hypertension in humans and animal models. Vascular endothelial primary cilia are known to function as mechano-sensory organelles. Although both primary cilia and dopamine receptors play important roles in vascular hypertension, their relationship has never been explored. To determine the roles of the dopaminergic system and mechano-sensory cilia, we studied the effects of dopamine on ciliary length and function in wild-type and mechano-insensitive polycystic mutant cells (Pkd1(-/)(-) and Tg737(orpk/orpk)). We show for the first time that mouse vascular endothelia exhibit dopamine receptor-type 5 (DR5), which colocalizes to primary cilia in cultured cells and mouse arteries in vivo. DR5 activation increases cilia length in arteries and endothelial cells through cofilin and actin polymerization. DR5 activation also restores cilia function in the mutant cells. In addition, silencing DR5 completely abolishes mechano-ciliary function in WT cells. We found that DR5 plays very important roles in ciliary length and function. Furthermore, the chemo-sensory function of cilia can alter the mechano-sensory function through changes in sensitivity to fluid-shear stress. We propose that ciliary DR5 has functional chemo- and mechano-sensory roles in endothelial cells.

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