Kinetic Studies of K-CL Cotransport in Cultured Rat Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells
During aging, and development of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease (CVD), aortic vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) transition from healthy contractile to diseased synthetic phenotypes. K-Cl cotransport (KCC) maintains cell volume and ion homeostasis in growth and differentiation, and hence is important for VSMC proliferation and migration. Therefore, KCC activity may play a role in the contractile-to-synthetic VSMC phenotypic transition. Early, medium, and late synthetic passage VSMCs were tested for specific cytoskeletal protein expression. KCC-mediated ouabain- and bumetanide-insensitive Rb+ (a K+ congener) influx was determined as Cl−-dependent Rb+ influx at different external Rb+ and Cl− ion concentrations, [Rb+]o and [Cl−]o. Expressions of the cytoskeletal proteins α-actin, vimentin, and desmin fell from early through late synthetic VSMCs. KCC kinetic parameters, such as maximum velocity (Vm), and apparent Cl− and Rb+ affinities (Km), were calculated with Lineweaver-Burk, Hanes-Woolf, and Hill approximations. Vm values of both Rb+- and Cl−-dependent influxes were of equal magnitude, commensurate with a KCC stoichiometry of unity, and rose threefold from early to late synthetic VSMCs. Hill coefficients for Rb+ and Cl− correlated with cell passage number, suggesting increased KCC ligand cooperativity. However, Km values for [Cl−]o were strikingly bimodal with 60–80 mM in early, ~20–30 mM in medium, and 60 mM in late passage cells. In contrast, Km values for [Rb+]o remained steady at ~17 mM. Since total KCC isoform expression was similar with cell passage, structure/function changes of the KCC signalosome may accompany the transition of aortic VSMCs from a healthy to a diseased phenotype.
Lauf, P. K.,
& Adragna, N. C.
(2019). Kinetic Studies of K-CL Cotransport in Cultured Rat Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells. American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology, 316 (2), C274-C284.