Volume-sensitive KCl cotransport associated with human cervical carcinogenesis

Meng Ru Shen, Cheng Yang Chou, J. Clive Ellory

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63 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigates the volume-sensitive KCl cotransporter (KCC) in various types of human cervical epithelial cell, testing the hypothesis that cervical malignancy is accompanied by differential expression of volume-sensitive KCC. Normal human cervical epithelial cells have KCCs which are quiescent in normal physiological conditions and are relatively refractory to hypotonic stress. By contrast, cervical cancer cells have KCCs which are also nearly quiescent in normal physiological conditions but high transport rates are observed in response to hypotonic challenge. Using isoform-specific primers, mRNA transcripts of KCC1, KCC3 and KCC4 were identified by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) in several types of cervical cell, and confirmed by digestion with specific restriction endonucleases. By semiquantitative RT-PCR with β-actin as the internal standard, the results indicate that cervical carcinogenesis is accompanied by the up-regulation of mRNA transcripts in KCC1, KCC3 and KCC4. [(Dihydroindenyl)oxy] alkanoic acid (DIOA), a KCC inhibitor, blocked both the regulatory volume decrease (RVD) process and volume-sensitive 86Rb+ efflux from cervical cancer cells in a dose-dependent manner. The volume-sensitive 86Rb+ efflux from cervical cancer cells was also blocked by two protein phosphatase inhibitors, calyculin A and okadaic acid, with IC50 values of 0.8 and 6 nM, respectively. Conversely, protein kinase inhibitors, chelerythrine and staurosporine, increased Cl--dependent 86Rb+ efflux. NEM (1 mM) led to a fivefold stimulation of 86Rb+ efflux which was totally Cl- dependent in cervical cancer cells. Hypotonicity could not stimulate any further 86Rb+ efflux after NEM treatment. These results indicate that the volume-sensitive KCC in cervical cancer cells plays a significant role in volume regulation and that the activities are modulated by a phosphorylation cascade. Taken together with our previous studies, we suggest the volume-regulatory ion channels and the cotransport systems work synergistically for volume regulation in human cervical cancer cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)751-760
Number of pages10
JournalPflugers Archiv European Journal of Physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2000 Jan 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Physiology (medical)

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