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Friday 01 April 2005

Heterodimerization with beta2-adrenergic receptors promotes surface expression and functional activity of alpha1D-adrenergic receptors.

By: Uberti MA, Hague C, Oller H, Minneman KP, Hall RA.

J Pharmacol Exp Ther 2005 Apr;313(1):16-23

The alpha1D-adrenergic receptor (alpha1D-AR) is a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) that is poorly trafficked to the cell surface and largely nonfunctional when heterologously expressed by itself in a variety of cell types. We screened a library of approximately 30 other group I GPCRs in a quantitative luminometer assay for the ability to promote alpha1D-AR cell surface expression. Strikingly, these screens revealed only two receptors capable of inducing robust increases in the amount of alpha1D-AR at the cell surface: alpha1B-AR and beta2-AR. Confocal imaging confirmed that coexpression with beta2-AR resulted in translocation of alpha1D-AR from intracellular sites to the plasma membrane. Additionally, coimmunoprecipitation studies demonstrated that alpha1D-AR and beta2-AR specifically interact to form heterodimers when coexpressed in HEK-293 cells. Ligand binding studies revealed an increase in total alpha1D-AR binding sites upon coexpression with beta2-AR, but no apparent effect on the pharmacological properties of the receptors. In functional studies, coexpression with beta2-AR significantly enhanced the coupling of alpha1D-AR to norepinephrine-stimulated Ca2+ mobilization. Heterodimerization of beta2-AR with alpha1D-AR also conferred the ability of alpha1D-AR to cointernalize upon beta2-AR agonist stimulation, revealing a novel mechanism by which these different adrenergic receptor subtypes may regulate each other's activity. These findings demonstrate that the selective association of alpha1D-AR with other receptors is crucial for receptor surface expression and function and also shed light on a novel mechanism of cross talk between alpha1- and beta2-ARs that is mediated through heterodimerization and cross-internalization.

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