Formation of gap junctions by expression of connexins in Xenopus oocyte pairs

Cell. 1989 Apr 7;57(1):145-55. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(89)90180-3.


RNAs coding for connexins 32, 43, and the putative lens gap junction protein MP26 were tested for their ability to induce cell-cell coupling in Xenopus oocyte pairs. Large, voltage-insensitive conductances developed when connexin32 and 43 RNA-injected oocytes were paired both with themselves and with each other. Oocyte pairs injected with water manifested small conductances, which were symmetrically voltage-dependent. MP26 RNA-injected pairs displayed no conductances above control values. Unexpectedly, connexin43/water oocyte pairs developed high, asymmetrically voltage-dependent conductances, a property not displayed by the connexin32/water pairs. In single oocytes, these proteins remained intracellular until pairing, at which time the connexins, but not MP26, concentrated at the appositional areas.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Communication
  • Cell Membrane
  • Connexins
  • Cytoplasm / analysis
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Intercellular Junctions / metabolism*
  • Ion Channels / physiology
  • Membrane Potentials
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics*
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Membrane Proteins / pharmacology
  • Oocytes / metabolism*
  • Oocytes / physiology
  • RNA, Messenger / physiology
  • Xenopus / genetics*


  • Connexins
  • Ion Channels
  • Membrane Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger