AN ESTIMATE OF THE EQUILIBRIUM DISSOCIATION CONSTANT FOR CALCIUM AS AN ANTAGONIST OF EVOKED ACETYLCHOLINE RELEASE: IMPLICATIONS FOR EXCITATION‐SECRETION COUPLING

E. M. SILINSKY*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

The equilibrium dissociation constant (Kd) for Ca2+ as an antagonist of evoked acetylcholine (ACh) release was determined in the hope of distinguishing whether divalent cations control excitation‐secretion coupling selectively (by binding with high affinity to an external membrane site) or non‐selectively (by screening fixed negative charges on the external surface of the nerve terminal). ACh release was detected electrophysiologically by means of conventional intracellular recording techniques at frog motor endplates. Ba2+ was used as the agonist to support the asynchronous release of ACh by repetitive motor nerve impulses. Despite its dispersed nature, release mediated by Ba2+ occurs through the same conductance pathway as synchronous release mediated by Ca2+. Ca2+ was found to be a potent antagonist of Ba2+‐dependent release with a Kd = 0.12 ± 0.02 mM (mean ± s.e. mean, n = 5). This value is 30‐50 times lower than the Kd for Mg2+ as an antagonist of the same release process. It is suggested that antagonism of release by Ca2+ is likely to be exerted at the same external site that binds other divalent cation antagonists, a site that appears essential for the agonist behaviour of Ca2+. The high affinity (low Kd) of Ca2+ as an antagonist of ACh release suggests that a selective, binding model appears to be the most appropriate single description of the action of divalent cations at the external surface of the motor nerve ending. 1977 British Pharmacological Society

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)691-693
Number of pages3
JournalBritish journal of pharmacology
Volume61
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1977

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology

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