We previously demonstrated that oscillatory fluid flow activates MC3T3-E1 osteoblastic cell calcium signaling pathways via a mechanism involving ATP releases and P2Y2 puringeric receptors. However, the molecular mechanisms by which fluid flow initiates cellular responses are still unclear. Accumulating evidence suggests that lipid rafts, one of the important membrane structural components, may play an important role in transducing extracellular fluid shear stress to intracellular responses. Due to the limitations of current techniques, there is no direct approach to study the role of lipid rafts in transmitting fluid shear stress. In this study, we targeted two important membrane components associated with lipid rafts, cholesterol, and glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored proteins (GPI-anchored proteins), to disrupt the integrity of cell membrane structures. We first demonstrated that membrane cholesterol depletion with the treatment of methyl-β-cyclodextrin inhibits oscillatory fluid flow induced intracellular calcium mobilization and ERK1/2 phosphorylation in MC3T3-E1 osteoblastic cells. Secondly, we used a novel approach to decrease the levels of GPI-anchored proteins on cell membranes by overexpressing glycosylphosphatidylinositol-specific phospholipase D in MC3T3-E1 osteoblastic cells. This resulted in significant inhibition of intracellular calcium mobilization and ERK1/2 phosphorylation in response to oscillatory fluid flow. Finally, we demonstrated that cholesterol depletion inhibited oscillatory fluid flow induced ATP releases, which were responsible for the activation of calcium signaling pathways in MC3T3-E1 osteoblastic cells. Our findings suggest that cholesterol and GPI-anchored proteins, two membrane structural components related to lipid rafts, may play an important role in osteoblastic cell mechanotransduction.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Cell Biology