Propagation of cytosolic calcium waves into the nuclei of hepatocytes

C. Lin, G. Hajnóczky, A. P. Thomas

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40 Scopus citations


The temporal and spatial organization of [Ca2+] changes within the nucleus of Fura-2 loaded hepatocytes maintained in primary culture has been investigated. Vasopressin stimulation induced oscillatory waves of cytosolic free [Ca2+] increase, which propagated freely through the nuclear region. Based on the amplitude of the Fura-2 signals from this region, the morphology of the hepatocyte nucleus and the rapid penetration of the nucleus by injected Fura-2, it can be concluded that the nuclear Ca2+ responses reflect changes occurring within the nucleoplasm. Intranuclear Ca2+ increases occurred as waves that appear to be directed by the Ca2+ waves passing through the surrounding cytoplasm. The apparent velocity of Ca2+ waves was higher in the nucleoplasm than in the cytoplasm (19.5 ± 2.9 versus 11.0 ± 1.1 μm/s). The nucleoplasm does not contain vesicular Ca2+ stores that might be released by Ins(1,4,5)P3. However, the nuclear envelope functions as a Ca2+ store that is sensitive to mobilization by Ins(1,4,5)P3. We conclude that the [Ca2+] in the nucleoplasm of the hepatocyte is close to equilibrium with the cytosolic [Ca2+] and that oscillatory waves of cytosolic [Ca2+] are closely paralleled by similar [Ca2+] changes in the nucleoplasm. The nuclear envelope is a component of the intracellular Ins(1,4,5)P3-sensitive Ca2+ storage pool and may serve as a reservoir for [Ca2+] elevations within the nucleus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)247-258
Number of pages12
JournalCell Calcium
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1994
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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