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J Cell Physiol. 2007 Jan;210(1):81-6.

Exogenous expression of claudin-5 induces barrier properties in cultured rat brain capillary endothelial cells.

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Department of Molecular Biopharmacy and Genetics, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences,Tohoku University, Aoba, Aramaki, Aoba-ku, Sendai, Japan.


Claudins are thought to be major components of tight junctions (TJs), and claudin-5 and -12 are localized at TJs of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Claudin-5-deficient mice exhibit size-selective (<800 Da) opening of the BBB. The purpose of this study was to clarify the expression levels of claudin-5 and -12 in rat brain capillary endothelial cells, and to examine the ability of claudin-5 to form TJs in cultured rat brain capillary endothelial cells (TR-BBB). Expression of claudin-5 mRNA in rat brain capillary fraction was 751-fold greater than that of claudin-12. The level of claudin-5 mRNA in the rat brain capillary fraction (per total mRNA) was 35.6-fold greater than that in whole brain, while the level of claudin-12 mRNA was only 13.9% of that in whole brain, suggesting that expression of claudin-12 mRNA is not restricted to brain capillaries. Transfection of TR-BBB cells with the claudin-5 gene afforded TR-BBB/CLD5 cells, which showed no change in expression of claudin-12 or ZO-1, while the expressed claudin-5 was detected at the cell-cell boundaries. The permeability surface product of [(14)C]inulin at a TR-BBB/CLD5 cell monolayer was significantly smaller (P < 0.01) than that for the parental TR-BBB cells, and the values of the permeability coefficient (Pe) were 1.14 x 10(-3) and 11.6 x 10(-3) cm/min, respectively. These results indicate that claudin-5, but not claudin-12, is predominantly expressed in brain capillaries, and plays a key role in the appearance of barrier properties of brain capillary endothelial cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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