PubMed 25395009

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: TRP , TRPA , TRPA1

Title: Activation of the chemosensing transient receptor potential channel A1 (TRPA1) by alkylating agents.

Authors: Bernhard Stenger, Franziska Zehfuss, Harald Mückter, Annette Schmidt, Frank Balszuweit, Eva Schäfer, Thomas Büch, Thomas Gudermann, Horst Thiermann, Dirk Steinritz

Journal, date & volume: Arch. Toxicol., 2015 Sep , 89, 1631-43

PubMed link:

The transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) cation channel is expressed in different tissues including skin, lung and neuronal tissue. Recent reports identified TRPA1 as a sensor for noxious substances, implicating a functional role in the molecular toxicology. TRPA1 is activated by various potentially harmful electrophilic substances. The chemical warfare agent sulfur mustard (SM) is a highly reactive alkylating agent that binds to numerous biological targets. Although SM is known for almost 200 years, detailed knowledge about the pathophysiology resulting from exposure is lacking. A specific therapy is not available. In this study, we investigated whether the alkylating agent 2-chloroethyl-ethylsulfide (CEES, a model substance for SM-promoted effects) and SM are able to activate TRPA1 channels. CEES induced a marked increase in the intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) in TRPA1-expressing but not in TRPA1-negative cells. The TRP-channel blocker AP18 diminished the CEES-induced calcium influx. HEK293 cells permanently expressing TRPA1 were more sensitive toward cytotoxic effects of CEES compared with wild-type cells. At low CEES concentrations, CEES-induced cytotoxicity was prevented by AP18. Proof-of-concept experiments using SM resulted in a pronounced increase in [Ca(2+)]i in HEK293-A1-E cells. Human A549 lung epithelial cells, which express TRPA1 endogenously, reacted with a transient calcium influx in response to CEES exposure. The CEES-dependent calcium response was diminished by AP18. In summary, our results demonstrate that alkylating agents are able to activate TRPA1. Inhibition of TRPA1 counteracted cellular toxicity and could thus represent a feasible approach to mitigate SM-induced cell damage.