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Glycine inhibits the LPS-induced increase in cytosolic Ca2+ concentration and TNFα production in cardiomyocytes by activating a glycine receptor

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      Previous studies have demonstrated that glycine (GLY) markedly reduces lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced myocardial injury. However, the mechanism of this effect is still unclear. The present study investigated the effect of GLY on cytosolic calcium concentration ([Ca 2+] c) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα) production in cardiomyocytes exposed to LPS, as well as whether the glycine-gated chloride channel is involved in this process.


      Neonatal rat cardiomyocytes were isolated, and the [Ca 2+] c and TNFα levels were determined by using Fura-2 and a Quantikine enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, respectively. The distribution of the GLY receptor and GLY-induced currents in cardiomyocytes were also investigated using immunocytochemistry and the whole-cell patch-clamp technique, respectively.


      LPS at concentrations ranging from 10 ng/mL to 100 μg/mL significantly stimulated TNFα production. GLY did not inhibit TNFα production induced by LPS at concentrations below 10 ng/mL but did significantly decrease TNFα release stimulated by 100 μg/mL LPS and prevented an LPS-induced increase in [Ca 2+] c, which was reversed by strychnine, a glycine receptor antagonist. GLY did not block the isoproterenol-induced increase in [Ca 2+] c, but did prevent the potassium chloride-induced increase in [Ca 2+] c in cardiomyocytes. Strychnine reversed the inhibition of the KCl–stimulated elevation in [Ca 2+] c by GLY. In chloride-free buffer, GLY had no effect on the dipotassium hydrogen phosphate-induced increase in [Ca 2+] c. Furthermore, GLY receptor α 1 and β subunit-immunoreactive spots were observed in cardiomyocytes, and GLY-evoked currents were blocked by strychnine.


      Cardiomyocytes possess the glycine-gated chloride channel, through which GLY prevents the increase in [Ca 2+] c and inhibits the TNFα production induced by LPS at high doses in neonatal rat cardiomyocytes.

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      Most cited references 17

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      Glycine-gated chloride channels in neutrophils attenuate calcium influx and superoxide production.

      Recently, it was demonstrated that liver injury and TNF-alpha production as a result of endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide, LPS) were attenuated by feeding animals a diet enriched with glycine. This phenomenon was shown to be a result of, at least in part, activation of a chloride channel in Kupffer cells by glycine, which hyperpolarizes the cell membrane and blunts increases in intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca(2+)](i)) similar to its action in the neuron. It is well known that hepatotoxicity due to LPS has a neutrophil-mediated component and that activation of neutrophils is dependent on increases in [Ca(2+)](i). Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine if glycine affected agonist-induced increases in [Ca(2+)](i) in rat neutrophils. The effect of glycine on increases in [Ca(2+)](i) elicited either by the bacterial-derived peptide formyl-methionine-leucine-phenylalanine (FMLP) or LPS was studied in individual neutrophils using Fura-2 and fluorescence microscopy. Both FMLP and LPS caused dose-dependent increases in [Ca(2+)](i), which were maximal at 1 microM FMLP and 100 microgram/ml LPS, respectively. LPS increased intracellular calcium in the presence and absence of extracellular calcium. Glycine blunted increases in [Ca(2+)](i) in a dose-dependent manner with an IC(50) of approximately 0.3 mM, values only slightly higher than plasma levels. Glycine was unable to prevent agonist-induced increases in [Ca(2+)](i) in chloride-free buffer. Moreover, strychnine (1 microM), an antagonist of the glycine-gated chloride channel in the central nervous system, reversed the effects of glycine (1 mM) on FMLP- or LPS-stimulated increases in [Ca(2+)](i). To provide hard evidence for a glycine-gated chloride channel in the neutrophil, the effect of glycine on radioactive chloride uptake was determined. Glycine caused a dose-dependent increase in chloride uptake into neutrophils with an ED(50) of approximately 0.4 mM, an effect also prevented by 1 microM strychnine. Glycine also significantly reduced the production of superoxide anion from FMLP-stimulated neutrophils. Taken together, these data provide clear evidence that neutrophils contain a glycine-gated chloride channel that can attenuate increases in [Ca(2+)](i) and diminish oxidant production by this important leukocyte.
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        LPS-induced TNF-alpha release from and apoptosis in rat cardiomyocytes: obligatory role for CD14 in mediating the LPS response.

        The bacterial endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS) contributes to the cardiovascular collapse and death observed in patients with sepsis. Because LPS has such profound effects on cardiac performance, we speculate that direct effects of LPS could be demonstrated on cardiomyocytes in culture, and that these direct effects are mediated by the LPS receptor, CD14. Accordingly, in this study, we provide evidence for CD14-dependent cardiotoxic effects of LPS including the LPS-stimulated secretion of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) from cardiomyocytes. TNF-alpha is an inflammatory cytokine which is known for its negative inotropic effects on cardiac performance, but has not until recently been shown to be produced by cardiac cells. In this study, LPS was found to stimulate strongly in a dose-dependent manner the secretion of TNF-alpha from cultured adult rat cardiomyocytes. Further, LPS-induced TNF-alpha secretion was blocked by an inhibitor of TNF-alpha processing, metallomatrix protease inhibitor (TAPI). Molecular and immunological evidence demonstrated the presence of LPS receptors (CD14) on cardiomyocytes. Attenuated TNF-alpha secretion following PI-PLC treatment confirmed the functional importance of CD14 for LPS-mediated myocardial effects. Importantly, LPS also triggered apoptosis in cultured cardiomyocytes as quantified by single-cell gel electrophoresis of nuclei exhibiting DNA fragmentation patterns characteristic of apoptosis (i.e. cardiac comets). Apoptotic cell death was blocked by pre-incubation with the soluble TNF-alpha receptor fragment (TNFRII:Fc), suggesting that LPS-induced apoptosis was TNF-alpha-dependent and probably involved an autocrine function for the TNF-alpha whose secretion was under LPS control. The results of this study suggest that the cardiodepressant effects of LPS are dependent on CD14 signaling and may not only be due to acute negative inotropic effects of TNF-alpha but also may be complicated by TNF-alpha-induced apoptotic cell death which effectively reduces the number of working myocardial cells.
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          Molecular evidence for a glycine-gated chloride channel in macrophages and leukocytes.

          Recent studies have demonstrated that glycine blunts the response of Kupffer cells to endotoxin. Based on pharmacological evidence, it was hypothesized that Kupffer cells and other macrophages contain a glycine-gated chloride channel similar to the glycine receptor expressed in neuronal tissues. Moreover, glycine stimulates influx of radiolabeled chloride in Kupffer cells in a dose-dependent manner. RT-PCR was used to identify mRNA of both alpha- and beta-subunits of the glycine receptor in rat Kupffer cells, peritoneal neutrophils, and splenic and alveolar macrophages, similar to the sequence generated from rat spinal cord. Importantly, the sequence of the cloned Kupffer cell glycine receptor fragment for the beta-subunit was >95% homologous with the receptor from the spinal cord. Membranes of these cells also contain a protein that is immunoreactive with antibodies against the glycine-gated chloride channel. These data demonstrate that Kupffer cells, as well as other macrophages and leukocytes, express mRNA and protein for a glycine-gated chloride channel with both molecular and pharmacological properties similar to the channel expressed in the central nervous system.

            Author and article information

            [1 ]Department of Pathophysiology, School of Medicine, Ji-nan University , Guangzhou 510632, China
            [2 ]Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Ji-nan University , Guangzhou 510632, China
            Author notes

            These two authors contributed equally to the paper.

            Acta Pharmacol Sin
            Acta Pharmacol. Sin
            Acta Pharmacologica Sinica
            Nature Publishing Group
            August 2009
            20 July 2009
            : 30
            : 8
            : 1107-1114
            19617896 4006684 aps2009106 10.1038/aps.2009.106
            Copyright © 2009 CPS and SIMM
            Original Article


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