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Biochim Biophys Acta 2015 Nov 01;184811 Pt A:2942-51. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2015.09.009.
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Mechanosensitive activation of CFTR by increased cell volume and hydrostatic pressure but not shear stress.

Vitzthum C , Clauss WG , Fronius M .

The cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) is a Cl(-) channel that is essential for electrolyte and fluid homeostasis. Preliminary evidence indicates that CFTR is a mechanosensitive channel. In lung epithelia, CFTR is exposed to different mechanical forces such as shear stress (Ss) and membrane distention. The present study questioned whether Ss and/or stretch influence CFTR activity (wild type, ∆F508, G551D). Human CFTR (hCFTR) was heterologously expressed in Xenopus oocytes and the response to the mechanical stimulus and forskolin/IBMX (FI) was measured by two-electrode voltage-clamp experiments. Ss had no influence on hCFTR activity. Injection of an intracellular analogous solution to increase cell volume alone did not affect hCFTR activity. However, hCFTR activity was augmented by injection after pre-stimulation with FI. The response to injection was similar in channels carrying the common mutations ∆F508 and G551D compared to wild type hCFTR. Stretch-induced CFTR activation was further assessed in Ussing chamber measurements using Xenopus lung preparations. Under control conditions increased hydrostatic pressure (HP) decreased the measured ion current including activation of a Cl(-) secretion that was unmasked by the CFTR inhibitor GlyH-101. These data demonstrate activation of CFTR in vitro and in a native pulmonary epithelium in response to mechanical stress. Mechanosensitive regulation of CFTR is highly relevant for pulmonary physiology that relies on ion transport processes facilitated by pulmonary epithelial cells.

PubMed ID: 26357939
Article link: Biochim Biophys Acta

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: cftr