Calmodulin-regulated processes and intracellular calcium in the heat stress response of mammalian cells

Douglas Parker Evans, The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston


Three approaches were used to examine the role of Ca$\sp{2+}$- and/or calmodulin (CaM)-regulated processes in the mammalian heat stress response. The focus of the first approach was on the major Ca$\sp{2+}$-binding protein, CaM, and involved the use of CaM antagonists that perturbed CaM-regulated processes during heat stress. The second approach involved the use of a cell line and its BPV-1 transformants that express increased basal levels of CaM, or parvalbumin--a Ca$\sp{2+}$-binding protein not normally found in these cells. The last approach used Ca$\sp{2+}$ chelators to buffer Ca$\sp{2+}$-transients. The principle conclusions resulting from these three experimental approaches are: (1) CaM antagonists cause a temperature-dependent potentiation of heat killing, but do not inhibit the triggering and development of thermotolerance suggesting some targets for heat killing are different from those that lead to thermotolerance; (2) Members of major HSP families (especially HSP70) can bind to CaM in a Ca$\sp{2+}$-dependent manner in vitro, and HSP have been associated with events leading to thermotolerance. But, because thermotolerance is not affected by CaM antagonists, and antagonists should interfere with HSP binding to CaM, the events leading to triggering or developing thermotolerance were not strongly dependent on HSP binding to CaM; (3) CaM antagonists can also bind to HSP70 (and possibly other HSP) suggesting an alternative mechanism for the action of these agents in heat killing may involve direct binding to other proteins, like HSP70, whose function is important for survival following heating and inhibiting their activity; and (4) The signal governing the rate of synthesis of another major HSP group, the HSP26 family, can be largely abrogated by elevated Ca$\sp{2+}$-binding proteins or Ca$\sp{2+}$ chelators without significantly reducing survival or thermotolerance suggesting if the HSP26 family is involved in either end point, it may function in (Ca$\sp{2+}$) $\sb{\rm i}$ homeostasis.

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Recommended Citation

Evans, Douglas Parker, "Calmodulin-regulated processes and intracellular calcium in the heat stress response of mammalian cells" (1990). Texas Medical Center Dissertations (via ProQuest). AAI9033102.