Down-regulation of the human norepinephrine transporter in intact 293-hNET cells exposed to desipramine.

Zhu MY, Blakely RD, Apparsundaram S, Ordway GA
J Neurochem. 1998 70 (4): 1547-55

PMID: 9523572 · DOI:10.1046/j.1471-4159.1998.70041547.x

The effects of continuous exposure of cultured cells expressing the human norepinephrine transporter (hNET) to the hNET inhibitor desipramine on hNET expression and function were studied. Exposure of HEK-293 cells transfected stably with the hNET cDNA (293-hNET cells) to desipramine for 3 days reduced the specific binding of [3H]nisoxetine in membrane homogenates in a concentration-dependent manner. The magnitude of the reductions in [3H]nisoxetine binding to hNET was dependent on the length of time of the exposure to desipramine, reaching 77% after a 21-day exposure. The reduction of [3H]nisoxetine binding returned to control levels within 72 h after a 3-day exposure to desipramine. Reductions in [3H]nisoxetine binding to hNET were accompanied by time-dependent and exposure concentration-dependent reductions in hNET protein levels as determined by western blotting. Similar to binding, hNET protein levels returned to control levels 72 h after cessation of desipramine exposure. Northern blotting indicated that exposure of 293-hNET cells to desipramine did not significantly alter hNET mRNA levels. Uptake of [3H]norepinephrine by 293-hNET cells was markedly reduced after a 3-day exposure to desipramine. However, desipramine exposure had no effect on uptake of [3H]glutamate or [3H]alanine. The present findings imply that down-regulation of the hNET in 293-hNET cells induced by desipramine results from a selective reduction in hNET protein levels, presumably a consequence of either a reduction in the translation of hNET mRNA or from an enhanced degradation of hNET protein.

MeSH Terms (13)

Adrenergic Uptake Inhibitors Blotting, Western Carrier Proteins Cell Line Desipramine Embryo, Mammalian Fluoxetine Humans Kidney Norepinephrine Norepinephrine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins RNA, Messenger Symporters

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