Characterization of effects of endothelin-1 on the L-type Ca2+ current in human atrial myocytes

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2001 Aug;281(2):H764-73. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.2001.281.2.H764.


The effects of endothelin-1 (ET-1) on the L-type Ca2+ current (I(Ca)) were examined in whole cell patch-clamped human atrial myocytes. Depending on the initial current density, ET-1 (10 nM) increased the amplitude of I(Ca) by 99 +/- 7% or decreased it by 33 +/- 2%. The stimulatory effect predominated on current of low density (2.3 +/- 0.2 pA/pF), whereas I(Ca) of higher density (5.8 +/- 0.3 pA/pF) was inhibited by ET-1. After I(Ca) stimulation by 1 microM isoproterenol, ET-1 always inhibited the current by 32 +/- 7% (P < 0.05), an effect that was suppressed by pretreating myocytes with pertussis toxin. Atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) inhibited I(Ca) (41 +/- 3%) by reducing intracellular cAMP concentration. In ANP-treated myocytes, the stimulatory effect of ET-1 on I(Ca) predominated (52 +/- 7%). The inhibitory effect of ET-1 on I(Ca) was blocked by the ET(A) antagonist BQ-123, whereas the stimulatory effect was suppressed by the ET(B) agonist BQ-788. We conclude that ET-1 has opposite effects on I(Ca) depending on the baseline amplitude of current, and both subtype ET receptors are implicated in the signal transduction pathways.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Calcium / metabolism*
  • Calcium Channels, L-Type / metabolism*
  • Child
  • Endothelin-1 / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Heart Atria / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Ion Transport / drug effects
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patch-Clamp Techniques


  • Calcium Channels, L-Type
  • Endothelin-1
  • Calcium