PubMed 24025865

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: TRP , TRPV , TRPV4

Title: TRP channel Ca(2+) sparklets: fundamental signals underlying endothelium-dependent hyperpolarization.

Authors: Michelle N Sullivan, Scott Earley

Journal, date & volume: Am. J. Physiol., Cell Physiol., 2013 Nov 15 , 305, C999-C1008

PubMed link:

Important functions of the vascular endothelium, including permeability, production of antithrombotic factors, and control of vascular tone, are regulated by changes in intracellular Ca(2+). The molecular identities and regulation of Ca(2+) influx channels in the endothelium are incompletely understood, in part because of experimental difficulties associated with application of patch-clamp electrophysiology to native endothelial cells. However, advances in confocal and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy and the development of fast, high-affinity Ca(2+)-binding fluorophores have recently allowed for direct visualization and characterization of single-channel transient receptor potential (TRP) channel Ca(2+) influx events in endothelial cells. These events, called "TRP channel Ca(2+) sparklets," have been optically recorded from primary endothelial cells and the intact endothelium, and the biophysical properties and fundamental significance of these Ca(2+) signals in vasomotor regulation have been characterized. This review will first briefly discuss the role of endothelial cell TRP channel Ca(2+) influx in endothelium-dependent vasodilation, describe improved methods for recording unitary TRP channel activity using optical methods, and highlight discoveries regarding the regulation and physiological significance of TRPV4 Ca(2+) sparklets in the vascular endothelium enabled by this new technology. Perspectives on the potential use of these techniques to evaluate changes in TRP channel Ca(2+) influx activity associated with endothelial dysfunction are offered.