Phagocytic Activity of Splenic Macrophages Is Enhanced and Accompanied by Cytosolic Alkalinization in TRPM7 Kinase-Dead Mice

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Transient receptor potential melastatin 7 (TRPM7) is a unique protein functioning as a cation channel as well as a serine/threonine kinase and is highly expressed in immune cells such as lymphocytes and macrophages. TRPM7 kinasedead (KD) mouse model has been used to investigate the role of this protein in immune cells; these animals display moderate splenomegaly and ectopic hemopoiesis. The basal TRPM7 current magnitudes in peritoneal macrophages isolated from KD mice were higher; however, the maximum currents, achieved after cytoplasmic Mg2+ washout, were not different. In the present study, we investigated the consequences of TRPM7 kinase inactivation in splenic and peritoneal macrophages. We measured the basal phagocytic activity of splenic macrophages using fluorescent latex beads, pHrodo zymosan bioparticles, and opsonized red blood cells. KD macrophages phagocytized more efficiently and had slightly higher baseline calcium levels compared to WT cells. We found no obvious differences in store‐operated Ca2+ entry between WT and KD macrophages. By contrast, the resting cytosolic pH in KD macrophages was significantly more alkaline than in WT. Pharmacological blockade of sodium hydrogen exchanger 1 (NHE1) reversed the cytosolic alkalinization and reduced phagocytosis in KD macrophages. Basal TRPM7 channel activity in KD macrophages was also reduced after NHE1 blockade. Cytosolic Mg2+ sensitivity of TRPM7 channels measured in peritoneal macrophages was similar in WT and KD mice. The higher basal TRPM7 channel activity in KD macrophages is likely due to alkalinization. Our results identify a novel role for TRPM7 kinase as a suppressor of basal phagocytosis and a regulator of cellular pH. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
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