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Cardiovasc Res. 2008 Dec 1;80(3):407-15. doi: 10.1093/cvr/cvn216. Epub 2008 Aug 14.

Prostanoid F receptors elicit an inotropic effect in rat left ventricle by enhancing myosin light chain phosphorylation.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology, University of Oslo, Sognsvannsvn. 20, Building A2/A3, PO Box 1057 Blindern, N-0316 Oslo, Norway.



The aims of this study were to determine if the prostanoid F receptor (FPR)-mediated inotropic effect in rat ventricle is mediated by increased phosphorylation of myosin light chain-2 (MLC-2) and to elucidate the signalling pathway(s) activated by FPRs to regulate MLC-2 phosphorylation.


Contractility was measured in left ventricular strips from adult male rats. Strips were also snap-frozen, and changes in the phosphorylation level of both MLC-2 and myosin phosphatase targeting subunit-2 (MYPT-2) were quantified. FPR stimulation with fluprostenol increased contractility by approximately 100% above basal and increased phosphorylation of both MLC-2 (by approximately 30%) and MYPT-2 (by approximately 50%). The FPR-mediated inotropic effect and MLC-2 phosphorylation were reduced by a similar magnitude in the presence of the myosin light chain kinase (MLCK) inhibitor ML-7 (approximately 60-70%) and an inhibitor of Ca(2+)/calmodulin, W-7 (approximately 35%). Inhibition of Rho-associated kinase by Y-27632 reduced the FPR-mediated inotropic effect and MLC-2 phosphorylation by approximately 40-45% and MYPT-2 phosphorylation by approximately 70%. ML-7 and Y-27632 together reduced contractility and MLC-2 phosphorylation by approximately 70-80%. The FPR-mediated inotropic effect was only modestly affected by high concentrations of the inositol tris-phosphate (IP(3)) receptor blocker 2-APB, but not by the protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor bisindolylmaleimide.


The FPR-evoked inotropic effect is mediated by increasing the phosphorylation of MLC-2 through regulation of both MLCK and myosin light chain phosphatase activities. The second messenger IP(3) and PKC are unlikely to be involved in the signalling cascade of the FPR-mediated positive inotropic effect. Therefore, FPR signalling mechanism(s) regulating MLC-2 phosphorylation likely extend beyond those classically established for G(q/11)-coupled receptors.

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