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Ca²⁺ Signaling Evoked by Activation of Na⁺ Channels and Na⁺/ Ca²⁺ Exchangers Is Required for GABA-Induced NG2 Cell Migration

Xiao-ping Tong, Xiang-yao Li, Bing Zhou, Wanhua Shen, Zhi-jun Zhang, Tian-le Xu and Shumin Duan
The Journal of Cell Biology
Vol. 186, No. 1 (Jul. 13, 2009), pp. 113-128
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40234303
Page Count: 16
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Ca²⁺ Signaling Evoked by Activation of Na⁺ Channels and Na⁺/ Ca²⁺ Exchangers Is Required for GABA-Induced NG2 Cell Migration
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Abstract

NG2 cells originate from various brain regions and migrate to their destinations during early development. These cells express voltage-gated Na⁺ channels but fail to produce typical action potentials. The physiological role of Na⁺ channels in these cells is unclear. We found that GABA induces membrane depolarization and Ca²⁺ elevation in NG2 cells, a process requiring activation of $GABA_A $ receptors, Na⁺ channels, and Na⁺/Ca²⁺ exchangers (NCXs), but not Ca²⁺ channels. We have identified tified a persistent Na⁺ current in these cells that may underlie the GABA-induced pathway of prolonged Na⁺ elevation, which in turn triggers Ca²⁺ influx via NCXs. This unique Ca²⁺ signaling pathway is further shown to be involved in the migration of NG2 cells. Thus, GABAergic signaling mediated by sequential activation of $GABA_A $ receptors, noninactivating Na⁺ channels, and NCXs may play an important role in the development and function of NG2 glial cells in the brain.

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