Phospholamban regulates nuclear Ca2+ stores and inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate mediated nuclear Ca2+ cycling in cardiomyocytes

Mu Chen, Dongzhu Xu, Adonis Z. Wu, Evangelia Kranias, Shien-Fong Lin, Peng Sheng Chen, Zhenhui Chen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations


Aims: Phospholamban (PLB) is the key regulator of the cardiac Ca2+ pump (SERCA2a)-mediated sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ stores. We recently reported that PLB is highly concentrated in the nuclear envelope (NE) from where it can modulate perinuclear Ca2+ handling of the cardiomyocytes (CMs). Since inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) receptor (IP3R) mediates nuclear Ca2+ release, we examined whether the nuclear pool of PLB regulates IP3-induced nuclear Ca2+ handling. Methods and results: Fluo-4 based confocal Ca2+ imaging was performed to measure Ca2+ dynamics across both nucleus and cytosol in saponin-permeabilized CMs isolated from wild-type (WT) or PLB-knockout (PLB-KO) mice. At diastolic intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i = 100 nM), the Fab fragment of the monoclonal PLB antibody (anti-PLB Fab) facilitated the formation and increased the length of spontaneous Ca2+ waves (SCWs) originating from the nuclear region in CMs from WT but not from PLB-KO mice. We next examined nuclear Ca2+ activities at basal condition and after sequential addition of IP3, anti-PLB Fab, and the IP3R inhibitor 2-aminoethoxydiphenyl borate (2-APB) at a series of [Ca2+]i. In WT mice, at 10 nM [Ca2+]i where ryanodine receptor (RyR2) based spontaneous Ca2+ sparks rarely occurred, IP3 increased fluorescence amplitude (F/F0) of overall nuclear region to 1.19 ± 0.02. Subsequent addition of anti-PLB Fab significantly decreased F/F0 to 1.09 ± 0.02. At 50 nM [Ca2+]i, anti-PLB Fab not only decreased the overall nuclear F/F0 previously elevated by IP3, but also increased the amplitude and duration of spark-like nuclear Ca2+ release events. These nuclear Ca2+ releases were blocked by 2-APB. At 100 nM [Ca2+]i, IP3 induced short SCWs originating from nucleus. Anti-PLB Fab transformed those short waves into long SCWs with propagation from the nucleus into the cytosol. In contrast, neither nuclear nor cytosolic Ca2+ dynamics was affected by anti-PLB Fab in CMs from PLB-KO mice in all these conditions. Furthermore, in WT CMs pretreated with RyR2 blocker tetracaine, IP3 and anti-PLB Fab still increased the magnitude of nuclear Ca2+ release but failed to regenerate SCWs. Finally, anti-PLB Fab increased low Ca2+ affinity mag-fluo 4 fluorescence intensity in the lumen of NE of nuclei isolated from WT but not in PLB-KO mice. Conclusion: PLB regulates nuclear Ca2+ handling. By increasing Ca2+ uptake into lumen of the NE and perhaps other perinuclear membranes, the acute reversal of PLB inhibition decreases global Ca2+ concentration at rest in the nucleoplasm, and increases Ca2+ release into the nucleus, through mechanisms involving IP3R and RyR2 in the vicinity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-197
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Molecular and Cellular Cardiology
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2018


  • 1,4,5-Trisphosphate receptor
  • Calcium signaling
  • Cardiomyocyte
  • Nuclear Ca dynamics
  • Nuclear membranes
  • Phospholamban
  • Sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca cycling

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