News from CEXS-UPF
This research identified an unprecedented functional interaction of three membrane proteins to accelerate cilia beating in response to progesterone. The study is published this month in Science Signaling and involves researchers from the laboratories of Molecular Physiology at the Department of Experimental and Health Sciences (UPF) and the Pharmacology Unit at IDIBELL-Universitat de Barcelona. Many cells lining the airways and the reproductive tract contain projections called cilia, whose function is, in the case of the airways, brushing away foreign particles, pathogens and allergens. Failure of this ciliary action contributes to respiratory pathology. Similarly, the transport of gametes and embryos through the Fallopian tube also depends on ciliary activity. The propelling effect exerted by the cilia depends on different factors, one of the most important being an increase in intracellular calcium concentration and the subsequent acceleration of the ciliary beat frequency (CBF). The Molecular Physiology Laboratory at the UPF has previously identified one of the key proteins that form the pathway for calcium entry, thereby, controlling ciliary activity.
This research identified an unprecedented functional interaction of three membrane proteisn to accelerate cilia beating in response to progesterone: two types of receptors for a neurotransmitter typically associated to brain function (GABA) and an ion channel (TRPV4) with a prominent role in the regulation of ciliated epithelia. In addition, the study opens new lines of research for therapeutic possibilities to tackle dysfunctions of in the oviduct transport of eggs” says Valverde.
C. Jung, V. Fernández-Dueñas, C. Plata, A. Garcia-Elias, F. Ciruela, J. M. Fernández-Fernández, M. A. Valverde. Functional coupling of GABAA/B receptors and the channel TRPV4 mediates rapid progesterone signaling in the oviduct. Sci. Signal. 11, eaam6558 (2018). DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aam6558