PubMed 20125181

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Cav3.1 , Cav3.2

Title: Dihydropyridine-insensitive calcium currents contribute to function of small cerebral arteries.

Authors: Ivana Y Kuo, Anthie Ellis, Victoria A L Seymour, Shaun L Sandow, Caryl E Hill

Journal, date & volume: J. Cereb. Blood Flow Metab., 2010 Jun , 30, 1226-39

PubMed link:

Although dihydropyridines are widely used for the treatment of vasospasm, their effectiveness is questionable, suggesting that other voltage-dependent calcium channels (VDCCs) contribute to control of cerebrovascular tone. This study therefore investigated the role of dihydropyridine-insensitive VDCCs in cerebrovascular function. Using quantitative PCR and immunohistochemistry, we found mRNA and protein for L-type (Ca(V)1.2) and T-type (Ca(V)3.1 and Ca(V)3.2) channels in adult rat basilar and middle cerebral arteries and their branches. Immunoelectron microscopy revealed both L- and T-type channels in smooth muscle cell (SMC) membranes. Using patch clamp electrophysiology, we found that a high-voltage-activated calcium current, showing T-type channel kinetics and insensitivity to nifedipine and nimodipine, comprised approximately 20% of current in SMCs of the main arteries and approximately 45% of current in SMCs from branches. Both components were abolished by the T-type antagonists mibefradil, NNC 55-0396, and efonidipine. Although nifedipine completely blocked vasoconstriction in pressurized basilar arteries, a nifedipine-insensitive constriction was found in branches and this increased in magnitude as vessel size decreased. We conclude that a heterogeneous population of VDCCs contributes to cerebrovascular function, with dihydropyridine-insensitive channels having a larger role in smaller vessels. Sensitivity of these currents to nonselective T-type channel antagonists suggests that these drugs may provide a more effective treatment for therapy-refractory cerebrovascular constriction.