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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1996 Feb 16;1299(3):342-52.

Arachidonate mobilization is coupled to depletion of intracellular calcium stores and influx of extracellular calcium in differentiated U937 cells.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk, Virginia 23501, USA.


We have previously reported that dimethylsulfoxide-differentiation of U937 cells induced significant A23187-stimulatable arachidonate mobilization, consistent with characteristics of cytosolic phospholipase A2 (Rzigalinski, B.A. and Rosenthal, M.D. (1994) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1223, 219-225). The present report demonstrates that differentiated cells attained higher elevations of intracellular free calcium in response to A23187 and thapsigargin, consistent with enhancement of the capacitative calcium influx pathway. Differentiation induced as significant increase in the size of the intracellular calcium stores, as well as in the capacity for store-activated calcium influx. Alterations in the capacitative calcium influx pathway were coupled to differentiation-induced activation of cPLA2 and mobilization of arachidonate in response to thapsigargin and fMLP stimulation. Although cPLA2 activity is often associated with influx of extracellular calcium, arachidonate mobilization in response to thapsigargin or fMPL was not simply a consequence of calcium influx. Assessment of intracellular free calcium elevations during thapsigargin or fMPL-induced stimulation suggest that a low level of arachidonic acid release was initiated upon release of intracellular store calcium. This initial release of arachidonate was unaffected by inhibition of calcium influx with nickel, EGTA, or SKF96365. Arachidonate release was observed when extracellular calcium was replaced with extracellular strontium, suggesting activation of the cytosolic PLA2 rather than secretory PLA2. Inhibition of PLA2 with prostaglandin B oligomer prevented both thapsigargin and fMLP-stimulated influx of extracellular calcium. Furthermore, exogenous free arachidonate stimulated influx of extracellular calcium in differentiated U937 cells. These results suggest that cPLA2-mediated release of free arachidonate may participate in the formation of a calcium influx factor which controls influx of extracellular calcium through store-controlled channels in the plasma membrane.

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