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J Biol Chem. 2006 Oct 20;281(42):31419-29. Epub 2006 Aug 22.

Extracellular NAD+ is an agonist of the human P2Y11 purinergic receptor in human granulocytes.

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  • 1Department of Experimental Medicine, Section of Biochemistry, and Center of Excellence for Biomedical Research (CEBR), University of Genova, Viale Benedetto XV/1, 16132 Genova, Italy.


Micromolar concentrations of extracellular beta-NAD+ (NAD(e)+) activate human granulocytes (superoxide and NO generation and chemotaxis) by triggering: (i) overproduction of cAMP, (ii) activation of protein kinase A, (iii) stimulation of ADP-ribosyl cyclase and overproduction of cyclic ADP-ribose (cADPR), a universal Ca2+ mobilizer, and (iv) influx of extracellular Ca2+. Here we demonstrate that exposure of granulocytes to millimolar rather than to micromolar NAD(e)+ generates both inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) and cAMP, with a two-step elevation of intracellular calcium levels ([Ca2+]i): a rapid, IP3-mediated Ca2+ release, followed by a sustained influx of extracellular Ca2+ mediated by cADPR. Suramin, an inhibitor of P2Y receptors, abrogated NAD(e)+-induced intracellular increases of IP3, cAMP, cADPR, and [Ca2+]i, suggesting a role for a P2Y receptor coupled to both phospholipase C and adenylyl cyclase. The P2Y(11) receptor is the only known member of the P2Y receptor subfamily coupled to both phospholipase C and adenylyl cyclase. Therefore, we performed experiments on hP2Y(11)-transfected 1321N1 astrocytoma cells: micromolar NAD(e)+ promoted a two-step elevation of the [Ca2+]i due to the enhanced intracellular production of IP3, cAMP, and cADPR in 1321N1-hP2Y(11) but not in untransfected 1321N1 cells. In human granulocytes NF157, a selective and potent inhibitor of P2Y(11), and the down-regulation of P2Y(11) expression by short interference RNA prevented NAD(e)+-induced intracellular increases of [Ca2+]i and chemotaxis. These results demonstrate that beta-NAD(e)+ is an agonist of the P2Y(11) purinoceptor and that P2Y(11) is the endogenous receptor in granulocytes mediating the sustained [Ca2+]i increase responsible for their functional activation.

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