Inhibition of intercellular communication via gap junction in cultured aortic endothelial cells by elevated glucose and phorbol ester

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1995 Mar 17;208(2):492-7. doi: 10.1006/bbrc.1995.1365.


Gap junctional intercellular communication (GJIC) is important in coordinating the cells in maintaining tissue homeostasis and in regulating signal transmission. We examined the effect of elevated glucose on GJIC activity in cultured bovine aortic endothelial cells. GJIC activity was assessed by quantitating the transfer from cell to cell of directly microinjected fluorescent dye molecules. GJIC was activated in the subconfluent monolayer. In this condition, exposing the cells to elevated glucose (400 mg/dl) for 24 hrs significantly inhibited GJIC activity, as compared with low glucose (100 mg/dl). This inhibition of GJIC activity induced by elevated glucose was mimicked by addition of 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate and was restored by addition of staurosporin (10(-8)M), a PKC inhibitor. These results suggest that inhibition of GJIC activity induced by elevated glucose probably through activation of PKC may be involved in the vascular endothelial cell dysfunction associated with diabetes.

MeSH terms

  • Alkaloids / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Aorta / cytology
  • Cattle
  • Cell Communication / drug effects*
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiology*
  • Gap Junctions / physiology*
  • Glucose / pharmacology*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Protein Kinase C / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Protein Kinase C / physiology*
  • Staurosporine
  • Tetradecanoylphorbol Acetate / pharmacology
  • Triazines / pharmacology


  • Alkaloids
  • Triazines
  • Protein Kinase C
  • Staurosporine
  • Glucose
  • Tetradecanoylphorbol Acetate
  • irsogladine