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J Insect Physiol. 1998 Mar;44(3-4):279-286.

Intracellular calcium in prothoracic glands of Manduca sexta.

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Saxon Academy of Sciences at Leipzig, AG Prof. Dr. H. Penzlin, Erbertstr.1 PF 100322, 07703, Jena, Germany


Cytosolic free calcium was measured in individual prothoracic gland cells of Manduca larvae with Fura-2. During the last larval instar there was no correlation between intracellular calcium concentration and ecdysteroid secretion by the glands. The addition of prothoracicotropic hormone (PTTH) from brains of Manduca larvae to prothoracic glands in vitro resulted in a significant increase in the calcium concentration of the gland cells. The effect of PTTH was inhibited by the inorganic calcium channel antagonists, cadmium, lanthanum and nickel, and by the antagonist of T-type calcium channels, amiloride, whereas all the other antagonists tested failed to block the action of PTTH. TMB-8, an inhibitor of intracellular calcium mobilization, did not reduce the PTTH-induced rise in calcium, which suggests that IP(3)-dependent intracellular calcium stores are not involved in the calcium-mediated stimulation of ecdysteroid synthesis. Moreover, PTTH is thought to increase intracellular calcium in prothoracic glands of Manduca by influencing calcium channels in the plasma membrane.

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