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J Immunol. 2000 Feb 1;164(3):1153-60.

Differential Ca2+ influx, KCa channel activity, and Ca2+ clearance distinguish Th1 and Th2 lymphocytes.

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1
Department of Physiology, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA.

Abstract

In Th1 and Th2 lymphocytes, activation begins with identical stimuli but results in the production of different cytokines. The expression of some cytokine genes is differentially induced according to the amplitude and pattern of Ca2+ signaling. Using fura- 2 Ca2+ imaging of murine Th1 and Th2 clones, we observed that the Ca2+ rise elicited following store depletion with thapsigargin is significantly lower in Th2 cells than in Th1 cells. Maximal Ca2+ influx rates and whole-cell Ca2+ currents showed that both Th1 and Th2 cells express indistinguishable Ca2+-release-activated Ca2+ channels. Therefore, we investigated other mechanisms controlling the concentration of intracellular Ca2+, including K+ channels and Ca2+ clearance from the cytosol. Whole-cell recording demonstrated that there is no distinction in the amplitudes of voltage-gated K+ currents in the two cell types. Ca2+-activated K+ (KCa) currents, however, were significantly smaller in Th2 cells than in Th1 cells. Pharmacological equalization of Ca2+-activated K+ currents in the two cell types reduced but did not completely eliminate the difference between Th1 and Th2 Ca2+ responses, suggesting divergence in an additional Ca2+ regulatory mechanism. Therefore, we analyzed Ca2+ clearance from the cytosol of both cell types and found that Th2 cells extrude Ca2+ more quickly than Th1 cells. The combination of a faster Ca2+ clearance mechanism and smaller Ca2+-activated K+ currents in Th2 cells accounts for the lower Ca2+ response of Th2 cells compared with Th1 cells.

PMID:
10640725
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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