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J Auton Nerv Syst. 2000 Jul 3;81(1-3):75-81.

Regulated expression of the rat recombinant P2X(3) receptor in stably transfected CHO-K1 tTA cells.

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Neurobiology Unit, Center for Biological Research, Roche Bioscience, 3401 Hillview Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94304, USA.


In this report, the regulatable expression by tetracycline of the rat recombinant P2X(3) receptor in stably transfected Chinese hamster ovary (CHO-K1) expressing the tetracycline-controlled transactivator (tTA) is described. cDNA encoding the rat P2X(3)-receptor was subcloned into pTRE (a tetracycline-repressible expression vector) which was used to transfect stably CHO-K1 tTA cells. Using whole cell patch clamp techniques, 100 microM ATP evoked inward currents of 2.9+/-1.6 nA in transfected cells grown in the absence of tetracycline (tet-). The P2X(3) receptor protein was detectable by immunoblot as early as 24 h and protein expression levels continued to increase as much as 192 h following activation of tTA by the removal of the antibiotic. Saturation binding isotherms using [35S]ATP gamma S yielded a pK(d) of 8.2+/-0.1 and a B(max) of 31.9+/-3.5 pmol/mg protein in tet- cell membranes and a pK(d) of 8.1+/-0.1 and a B(max) of 5.8+/-0.8 pmol/mg protein in tet+ cell membranes. The agonist ligands 2MeSATP and alpha beta MeATP displaced the binding of [35S]ATP gamma S in tet- cell membranes with very high affinity, yielding pIC(50) values of 9.4+/-0.2 and 7.5+/-0. 2, respectively. In tet+ cell membrane, displacement of [35S]ATP gamma S by 2MeSATP and alpha beta MeATP was of much lower affinity (pIC(50) values of 7.8 and 6.2, respectively). ATP, ADP and UTP showed similar displacement of [35S]ATP gamma S binding in tet- and tet+ cell membranes. In other experiments, cytosolic Ca(2+) was monitored using the fluorescent indicator, fluo-3. Increases in cytosolic Ca(2+) were elicited by 100 nM alpha beta MeATP in tet- cells while no increases in cytosolic Ca(2+) were detected below 100 microM alpha beta MeATP in either tet+ cells or untransfected cells. These calcium responses to alpha beta MeATP had a pEC(50) of 6.7 and were transient, returning to baseline within 120 s. Suramin produced concentration-dependent, parallel, dextral shifts of E/[A] curves to alpha beta MeATP yielding a pK(B) of 5.6. PPADS produced non-parallel, dextral shifts of E/[A] curves to alpha beta MeATP which were insurmountable. These results show for the first time, expression of a functional, homomeric recombinant rat P2X(3) receptor which is under regulated expression in a stably transfected mammalian cell line.

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