Intracellular Ca2+ pool content is linked to control of cell growth

Alison D. Short, Junhui Bian, Tarun K. Ghosh, Richard T. Waldron, Sheree L. Rybak, Donald L. Gill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

262 Scopus citations


A close correlation was observed between intracellular Ca2+ pool depletion and refilling and the onset of DNA synthesis and proliferation of DDT1MF-2 smooth muscle cells. The intracellular Ca2+ pump inhibitors 2,5-di-tert-butylhydroquinone (DBHQ) and thapsigargin (TG) specifically emptied identical inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (InsP3)-sensitive Ca2+ pools and both arrested cell growth at concentrations corresponding to Ca2+ pump blockade. However, an important distinction was observed between the two inhibitors with respect to their reversibility of action. Upon removal of DBHQ from DBHQ-arrested cells, Ca2+ pools immediately refilled, and 14 hr later cells entered S phase followed by normal cell proliferation; the time for entry into S phase was identical to that for cells released from confluence arrest. Although TG irreversibly blocked Ca2+ pumping and emptied Ca2+ pools, high serum treatment of TG-arrested cells induced recovery of functional Ca2+ pools in 6 hr (via probable synthesis of new pump); thereafter cells proceeded to S phase and normal cell proliferation within the same time period (14 hr) as that following release of DBHQ-arrested cells. The precise relationship between Ca2+ pump blockade and growth arrest indicates that Ca2+ pool emptying maintains cells in a G0-like quiescent state; upon refilling of pools, normal progression into the cell cycle is resumed. It is possible that a specific cell cycle event necessary for G0 to G1 transition depends upon signals generated from the InsP3-sensitive Ca2+ pool.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4986-4990
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 1 1993

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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