Effects of Mn2+ and Ca2+ on the mechanical properties of glycerinated myofibrillar bundles originating from slow S1 type muscle fibres of superficial flexor muscles of the lobster Nephrops norvegicus were investigated. Mn2+ (5-20 microM) activated the preparations in a dose-dependent manner. The sensitivity of myofibrillar force generation for Mn2+ was around 30 times lower than that for Ca2+. The maximal tension produced under Mn2+ activation was about 75% of that under Ca2+ activation. At higher free Mn2+ concentrations (>2 mM), the steady-state force decreased; it was completely abolished at 30 mM free Mn2+. These high Mn2+ solutions were accompanied by changed in MgATP and MnATP concentrations, and in the ionic strength. Control experiments have shown that none of these parameters seemed fo account fully for the observed force depression in high Mn2+ solutions. It is likely that direct effects of Mn2+ such as a change of the myofilament surface charges are responsible. The maximal unloaded shortening velocity of the myofibrillar preparations was shown to be similar under maximal Mn2+ and Ca2+ activation. Conversely, the kinetics of stretch-induced delayed force increase were about two to three times faster under Mn2+ activation. These results suggest that certain steps of the cross-bridge cycle depend on the ion species bound to the regulatory proteins.
We studied the sensitivity of mitochondrial permeability transition pore (MPTP) opening to natural inductors--Ca2+ ions in the rat heart mitochondria with chronic deficiency of nigrostriatal dopamine caused by an injection of selective neurotoxin 6-hydroxidofamine in an ascending lateral bundle of the forebrain. MPTP-opening was determined specrophotometrically (lamda=520 nm) by a decrease in an optical density resulting from mitochondrial swelling. It has been shown that the rat heart mitochondria with chronic deficiency of nigrostriatal dopamine are more sensitive to Ca2+ in its physiological concentration (10(-7) mol/l) and overload (10(-6) - 10(-4) mol/l) in comparison to control animals. Thus, obtained results lead to a conclusion that an increased sensitivity of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore to calcium and mitochondrial membrane permeability may be one of the causes previously reported of disturbance in contractile function of the rat heart with chronic deficiency of nigrostriatal dopamine.
A comparative study was performed for actomyosin complexes of the female rabbit myometrium in the state of labour (actomyosin of the control) and secondary uterine inertia (actomyosin of the model). Under the secondary uterine inertia the activity of actomyosin Ca2+- and Mg2+-ATPase decreases. When pH of the medium changes, ATPase of control actomyosin has two peaks of the activity: at rH 6.0 and pH 9.0, that of the model at pH 6.0. Actomyosin of the model and control differs by a degree and rate of superprecipitation, thermal stability and structure. It is supposed that the structural changes in actomyosin under the secondary uterine inertia occur due to accumulation of the metabolism products, the level of which with this pathology is beyond the limits of the adaptation potentialities of the organism.
In fall (November 2005) and winter (February 2006), we collected current-year foliage of native red spruce (Picea rubens Sarg.) growing in a reference watershed and in a watershed treated in 1999 with wollastonite (CaSiO(3), a slow-release calcium source) to simulate preindustrial soil calcium concentrations (Ca-addition watershed) at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest (Thornton, NH). We analyzed nutrition, soluble sugar concentrations, ascorbate peroxidase (APX) activity and cold tolerance, to evaluate the basis of recent (2003) differences between watersheds in red spruce foliar winter injury. Foliar Ca and total sugar concentrations were significantly higher in trees in the Ca-addition watershed than in trees in the reference watershed during both fall (P=0.037 and 0.035, respectively) and winter (P=0.055 and 0.036, respectively). The Ca-addition treatment significantly increased foliar fructose and glucose concentrations in November (P=0.013 and 0.007, respectively) and foliar sucrose concentrations in winter (P=0.040). Foliar APX activity was similar in trees in both watersheds during fall (P=0.28), but higher in trees in the Ca-addition watershed during winter (P=0.063). Cold tolerance of foliage was significantly greater in trees in the Ca-addition watershed than in trees in the reference watershed (P
Peptides derived from the precursor of A- and B-type natriuretic peptides (ANP and BNP) are powerful clinical markers of cardiac hypertrophy and dysfunction. It is known that many stimuli affecting the intracellular calcium concentration also induce ANP and BNP secretion. It was our intention to study the mechanisms by which calcium regulates the secretion of ANP and BNP. The effects of pacing and calcium-calmodulin kinase II activity on natriuretic peptide secretion were studied in isolated perfused rat atria and cultured rat neonatal cardiomyocytes. In isolated rat atrium pacing induced an increase in diastolic, systolic, and averaged intracellular free calcium concentration and a frequency-dependent increase in the secretion of both ANP and BNP. The molar ratio of the secreted natriuretic peptides (ANP to BNP) remained nearly constant ( approximately 1000) at all the pacing frequencies tested (1, 3, 6, and 8 Hz). Calmodulin kinase II inhibitor KN-93 (3 mum) did not affect intracellular free calcium concentration but showed a frequency-dependent inhibitory effect on ANP and BNP secretion without a change in ANP to BNP ratio. In the neonatal cardiomyocytes, KN-93 (3 mum) suppressed the secretion and gene expression of both ANP and BNP. Overexpression of constitutively active (T286D) or nuclear (delta(B)) calcium-calmodulin kinase II induced an increase in ANP and BNP gene expression. The results indicate that the calcium-dependent secretion and gene expression of A- and B-type natriuretic peptides are similarly regulated by calmodulin kinase II-dependent mechanisms. This is a plausible mechanism contributing to exercise-induced natriuretic peptide secretion and the augmented secretion in heart dysfunction due to impaired calcium handling.
Interbacterial coaggregation between Actinomyces viscosus indigenous to the human mouth and Streptococcus pyogenes and Streptococcus agalactiae was studied. Fifteen of twenty-six strains of Streptococcus pyogenes and thirteen of thirty-one Streptococcus agalactiae showed a coaggregation with Actinomyces viscosus strain. The results show that the coaggregation mechanism required calcium and was dependent on pH. Some coaggregations were inhibited by 0.06 M. lactose and by 1 M. NaCl.
Denaturation of alpha-amylase from Aspergillus oryzae was studied under the effect of heating urea and some other denaturating agents. Inhibition in the enzyme denaturation, deviation from the first order equation and, consequently, establishment of the false equilibrium in the system are shown. The values are calculated for the reaction rate constants of alpha-amylase denaturation under the effect to heat (40 degrees C) and urea. A method is developed for isolating native amylase stabilized by heating at 40 degrees C during the period of inactivation slowing down and preservation to the 50-70% activity in the system. It is shown that in the presence of calcium ions the stability of the isolated native enzyme is 13.0 +/- 2.5% hihger on the average to heating up to 40 degrees C, 28.4 %/- 7.2% higher - to the effect of 5.5 M urea and 18.4 +/- 3.6% higher - to 18% alcohol.
The goal of this study was to develop a biotic ligand model (BLM) to predict the acute toxicity of cadmium to Daphnia pulex. Organisms were cultured in moderately soft water and standard 48h acute toxicity tests were used to determine EC50s in various water chemistries where the effects of Ca(2+), Na(+), Mg(2+), Cl(-), K(+), pH, and two sources of natural organic matter (Suwannee River and Nordic Reservoir) were evaluated. Overall, toxicity responses were consistent with the free-ion activity model and the principles inherent in the BLM. Increases in Ca(2+) resulted in higher EC50s, indicating that Cd(2+) competes with Ca(2+) for uptake at the biotic ligand. Similar cation competition effects were observed when Mg(2+) was varied but with a less pronounced protective effect relative to Ca(2+). Changes in Na(+) and K(+) concentrations had no significant effect on Cd toxicity. EC50 values did not change significantly when pH was adjusted over a range from 8.0 to 6.1. Additions of natural organic matter resulted in elevated dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations that significantly reduced Cd bioavailability via complexation of Cd(2+). An existing biotic ligand model (HydroQual BLM ver 2.2.3) was tested for its ability to predict acute Cd toxicity to D. pulex. Once the BLM was adjusted for the relatively sensitivity of D. pulex the protective effects of Ca and DOC could be predicted reasonably well but other test chemistries did not match with measured EC50s. Binding constants derived from the test results (logK(CaBL) of 4.1, logK(MgBL) of 3.7, logK(HBL) of 6.1 and logK(CdBL) of 7.0) were used to develop a modified BLM for the effects of Cd on D. pulex that accounted for the moderating effect of Ca and Mg on acute toxicity but overestimated the protective effect of DOC.
Capacitative calcium entry and calcium wave propagation were studied in keratinocytes from healthy volunteers and patients with type 1 neurofibromatosis (NF1) in calcium-depleted and in low calcium culture medium. In previous studies, we found evidence that mutations of the NF1 tumor suppressor gene can lead to altered calcium-mediated cell signaling in keratinocytes cultured in the presence of a high extracellular calcium concentration. The present study demonstrated that the differences between normal and NF1 keratinocytes were dependent on extracellular calcium concentration. Specifically, when keratinocytes were exposed to thapsigargin under calcium-depleted culture conditions the subsequent increase in free intracellular calcium concentration was moderate in NF1 keratinocytes compared to controls. The finding indicates lowered endoplasmic calcium stores in NF1 which may also in part explain the reduced activation signal for capacitative calcium influx and the wound-induced intracellular Ca2+ transient observed in NF1 keratinocytes maintained in culture medium containing 0.05 mM calcium. The differences between control and NF1 keratinocytes were most pronounced when the cells were cultured in the presence of a high (1.8 mM) calcium concentration. Since elevated extracellular calcium levels induce keratinocytes to form cellular contacts and lead to terminal differentiation, markedly aberrant responses of NF1 keratinocytes in the presence of a high calcium concentration may help to explain previous findings on impaired formation of cellular junctions and differentiation in NF1 deficient cells.