• Authors: Dubel, S. J., Altier, C., Chaumont, S., Lory, P., Bourinet, E., Nargeot, J.
  • Year: 2004
  • Journal: J Biol Chem 279 29263-9
  • Applications: in vitro / DNA / jetPEI
  • Cell types:
    1. Name: CHO
      Description: Chinese hamster ovary cells
    2. Name: HEK-293
      Description: Human embryonic kidney Fibroblast
      Known as: HEK293, 293


It has been suggested that the auxiliary subunits of high voltage-activated (HVA) calcium channels modulate T-type, low voltage-activated (LVA) calcium channels. Such a regulation has yet to be documented, especially because there has been no biochemical characterization of T-channels. To monitor total protein levels and plasma membrane expression of T-channels in living cells, external epitopes (hemagglutinin, FLAG) were introduced into human recombinant Ca(V)3 channels that were also N-terminally fused to green fluorescent protein. Utilizing Western blot techniques, fluorescence flow cytometry, immunofluorescence, luminometry, and electrophysiology, we describe here that beta(1b) and alpha(2)-delta(1) subunits enhance the level of Ca(V)3 proteins as well as their plasma membrane expression in various expression systems. We also report that, in both Xenopus oocytes and mammalian cells, the alpha(2)-delta(1) subunits increase by at least and beta(1b) 2-fold the current density of Ca(V)3 channels with no change in the electrophysiological properties. Altogether, these data indicate that HVA auxiliary subunits modulate Ca(V)3 channel surface expression, suggesting that the membrane targeting of HVA and LVA alpha(1) subunits is regulated dynamically through the expression of a common set of regulatory subunits.