Neuroepithelial bodies as mechanotransducers in the intrapulmonary airway epithelium : involvement of TRPC5
Faculty of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences . Biomedical Sciences
New York, N.Y.
American journal of respiratory cell and molecular biology / American Thoracic Society. - New York, N.Y., 1989 - 2010
, p. 315-323
University of Antwerp
In rodent lungs, a major part of the myelinated vagal airway afferents selectively contacts pulmonary neuroepithelial bodies (NEBs). Because most myelinated vagal airway afferents concern physiologically characterized mechanoreceptors, the present study aimed at unraveling the potential involvement of NEB cells in transducing mechanosensory information from the airways to the central nervous system. Physiological studies were performed using confocal Ca2+ imaging of airway epithelium in murine lung slices. Mechanical stimulation by short-term application of a mild hypoosmotic solution (230 mosmol) resulted in a selective, fast, reversible, and reproducible Ca2+ rise in NEB cells. Other airway epithelial cells could only be activated using more severe hypoosmotic stimuli (< 200 mosmol). NEB cells selectively expressed the Ca2+permeable osmo- and mechanosensitive transient receptor potential canonical channel 5 (TRPC5) in their apical membranes, whereas immunoreactivity for TRP vanilloid-4 and TRP melastatin-3 was abundant in virtually all other airway epithelial cells. Hypoosmotic activation of NEB cells was prevented by GsMTx-4, an inhibitor of mechanosensitive ion channels, and by SKF96365, an inhibitor of TRPC channels. Short application of gadolinium, reported to activate TRPC5 channels, evoked a transient Ca2+ rise in NEB cells. Osmomechanical activation of NEB cells gave rise to a typical delayed activation of Clara-like cells due to the release of ATP from NEB cells. Because ATP may activate the NEB-associated P2X2/3 ATP receptor expressing myelinated vagal afferents, the current observations strongly suggest that pulmonary NEB cells are fully equipped to initiate mechanosensory signal transduction to the central nervous system via a purinergic signaling pathway.