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Mol Carcinog. 1991;4(4):322-7.

Molecular mechanisms of TPA-mediated inhibition of gap-junctional intercellular communication: evidence for action on the assembly or function but not the expression of connexin 43 in rat liver epithelial cells.

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Programme of Multistage Carcinogenesis, International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France.


We found that a rat liver epithelial cell line (IAR 20) expresses connexin 43, the major cardiac gap-junction protein, but not connexin 26 or connexin 32, major liver gap-junction proteins. The effects of TPA on connexin 43 expression in IAR 20 were investigated using northern blot analysis, western blot analysis, and an immunofluorescence technique. Gap-junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) in this cell line decreased within 60 min of 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA) treatment and recovered after 24 h. The number of immunofluorescence spots of connexin 43 on IAR 20 was closely related to the change in GJIC induced by TPA. However, TPA did not change the level of mRNA measured by northern blot analysis. Moreover, connexin 43 protein expression analyzed by western blotting suggests that connexin 43 proteins were still present in TPA-treated cells at a similar level. These results suggest that GJIC of these rat liver epithelial cells was mediated by connexin 43 protein and that TPA inhibited GJIC by inhibiting posttranslational processing of connexin 43 proteins, e.g., localization or assembly.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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