Differential G protein-mediated coupling of D2 dopamine receptors to K+ and Ca2+ currents in rat anterior pituitary cells

Neuron. 1992 Mar;8(3):455-63. doi: 10.1016/0896-6273(92)90273-g.


In anterior pituitary cells, dopamine, acting on D2 dopamine receptors, concomitantly reduces calcium currents and increases potassium currents. These dopamine effects require the presence of intracellular GTP and are blocked by pretreatment of the cells with pertussis toxin, suggesting that one or more G protein is involved. To identify the G proteins involved in coupling D2 receptors to these currents, we performed patch-clamp recordings in the whole-cell configuration using pipettes containing affinity-purified polyclonal antibodies raised against either Go alpha, Gi3 alpha, or Gi1,2 alpha. Dialysis with Go alpha antiserum significantly reduced the inhibition of calcium currents induced by dopamine, while increase of potassium currents was markedly attenuated only by Gi3 alpha antiserum. We therefore conclude that in pituitary cells, two different G proteins are involved in the signal transduction mechanism that links D2 receptor activation to a specific modulation of the four types of ionic channels studied here.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Diphosphate Ribose / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Calcium / physiology
  • Calcium Channels / physiology*
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Dopamine / physiology
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Immunologic Techniques
  • Ion Channel Gating
  • Membrane Potentials
  • Pituitary Gland, Anterior / physiology*
  • Potassium / physiology
  • Potassium Channels / physiology*
  • Rats
  • Receptors, Dopamine / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Calcium Channels
  • Potassium Channels
  • Receptors, Dopamine
  • Adenosine Diphosphate Ribose
  • GTP-Binding Proteins
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • Dopamine