Catecholamine secretion induced by various secretagogues in cultured bovine chromaffin cells has been correlated with Ca2+ influx and intracellular Ca2+ concentrations. Nicotine and high K+ caused prompt secretion of catecholamines from cells. Coincidently, both secretagogues evoked 45[Ca2+] influx with a parallel increase in free intracellular Ca2+ concentration, as determined by Quin 2 fluorescence. However, the rate of return of Ca2+ level to baseline after nicotine stimulation was more rapid than after K+ stimulation. In comparison, stimulation with veratridine produced a slow and prolonged Ca2+ influx accompanied by lower levels of intracellular Ca2+ than those observed after nicotine or K+ stimulation. Yet, during 15 min of stimulation, veratridine induced a substantial catecholamine release, which was larger than that obtained after nicotine or K+ stimulations. The Ca2+ ionophore A23187 (1 μM) induced a pronounced increase in intracellular Ca2+ levels, but did not evoke any significant catecholamine release. Finally, addition of the Ca2+ channel blocker verapamil following stimulation, at a time when intracellular Ca2+ concentration was at its peak level, did not affect the rate of decline in intracellular free Ca2+ concentration but promptly blocked Ca2+ uptake and catecholamine secretion. These findings suggest that the rate of Ca2+ influx, rather than the absolute level of intracellular Ca2+ concentration, determines the rate and extent of catecholamine release.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
- Cell Biology