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J Biol Chem. 2000 Feb 18;275(7):5228-37.

Platelet-derived growth factor rapidly increases activity and cell surface expression of the EAAC1 subtype of glutamate transporter through activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase.

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  • 1Department of Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Na(+)-dependent glutamate transporters are the primary mechanism for removal of excitatory amino acids (EAAs) from the extracellular space of the central nervous system and influence both physiologic and pathologic effects of these compounds. Recent evidence suggests that the activity and cell surface expression of a neuronal subtype of glutamate transporter, EAAC1, are rapidly increased by direct activation of protein kinase C and are decreased by wortmannin, an inhibitor of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-K). We hypothesized that this regulation could be analogous to insulin-induced stimulation of the GLUT4 subtype of glucose transporter, which is dependent upon activation of PI3-K. Using C6 glioma, a cell line that endogenously and selectively expresses EAAC1, we report that platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) increased Na(+)-dependent L-[(3)H]-glutamate transport activity within 30 min. This effect of PDGF was not due to a change in total cellular EAAC1 immunoreactivity but was instead correlated with an increase cell surface expression of EAAC1, as measured using a membrane impermeant biotinylation reagent combined with Western blotting. A decrease in nonbiotinylated intracellular EAAC1 was also observed. These studies suggest that PDGF causes a redistribution of EAAC1 from an intracellular compartment to the cell surface. These effects of PDGF were accompanied by a 35-fold increase in PI3-K activity and were blocked by the PI3-K inhibitors, wortmannin and LY 294002, but not by an inhibitor of protein kinase C. Other growth factors, including insulin, nerve growth factor, and epidermal growth factor had no effect on glutamate transport nor did they increase PI3-K activity. These studies suggest that, as is observed for insulin-mediated translocation of GLUT4, EAAC1 cell surface expression can be rapidly increased by PDGF through activation of PI3-K. It is possible that this PDGF-mediated increase in EAAC1 activity may contribute to the previously demonstrated neuroprotective effects of PDGF.

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