Growth factor-induced cell migration underlies various physiological and pathological processes. The mechanisms by which growth factors regulate cell migration are not completely understood. Although intracellular elevation of Ca2+ is known to be critical in cell migration, the source of this Ca2+ elevation and the mechanism by which Ca2+ modulates this process in fibroblast cells are not well defined. Here we show that increase of cellular Ca2+ through Ca2+ influx, rather than Ca2+ release from intracellular stores, is essential for growth factor-induced fibroblast cell migration. Voltage-gated L-type Ca2+ channels, previously known to exist in excitable cells such as neurons and muscle cells, are shown here to be present in fibroblasts as -well. Furthermore, these channels are responsible for the Ca2+ influx. L-type Ca 2+ channel inhibitors block growth factor-induced Ca2+ influx and fibroblast cell migration. One mechanism by which Ca2+ signals control cell migration is to regulate the contraction of the trailing edge of migrating fibroblasts; this process is controlled by the small GTPase Rho in fast migrating cells such as leukocytes. Downstream of Ca2+, both calmodulin and myosin light chain kinase, but not calcineurin, are involved leading to phosphorylation of the myosin light chain at the trailing end. Thus, trailing edge contraction is critically regulated by Ca2+ influx through L-type Ca2+ channels in growth factor-induced fibroblast cell migration.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology