Agonist-evoked, intracellular Ca2+-signalling events are associated with active extrusion of Ca2+ across the plasrna membrane, implying a local increase in Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]) at the extracellular face of the cell. The possibility that these external [Ca2+] changes may have specific physiological functions has received little consideration in the past. Here we show that physiological ambient [Ca2+], Ca2+ mobilization in one cell produces an extracellular signal that can be detected in nearby cells expressing the extracellular Ca2+-sensing receptor (CaR), a cell-surface receptor for divalent cations wth a widespread tissue distribution. The CaR may therefore mediate a universal form of intercellular communication that allows cells to be informed of the Ca2+-signalling status of their neighbours.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cell Biology