Pharmacological characterization of the voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels present in synaptosomes from rat and chicken central nervous system

J Neurochem. 1995 Jun;64(6):2544-51. doi: 10.1046/j.1471-4159.1995.64062544.x.


The voltage-dependent calcium channels present in mammalian and chicken brain synaptosomes were characterized pharmacologically using specific blockers of L-type channels (1,4-dihydropyridines), N-type channels (omega-conotoxin GVIA), and P-type channels [funnel web toxin (FTX) and omega-agatoxin IVA]. K(+)-induced Ca2+ uptake by chicken synaptosomes was blocked by omega-conotoxin GVIA (IC50 = 250 nM). This toxin at 5 microM did not block Ca2+ entry into rat frontal cortex synaptosomes. FTX and omega-agatoxin IVA blocked Ca2+ uptake by rat synaptosomes (IC50 = 0.17 microliter/ml and 40 nM, respectively). Likewise, in chicken synaptosomes, FTX and omega-agatoxin IVA affected Ca2+ uptake, FTX (3 microliters/ml) exerted a maximal inhibition of 40% with an IC50 similar to the one obtained in rat preparations, whereas with omega-agatoxin IVA saturation was not reached even at 5 microM. In chicken preparations, the combined effect of saturating concentrations of FTX (1 microliter/ml) and different concentrations of omega-conotoxin GVIA showed no additive effects. However, the effect of saturating concentrations of FTX and omega-conotoxin GVIA was never greater than the one observed with omega-conotoxin GVIA. We also found that 60% of the Ca2+ uptake by rat and chicken synaptosomes was inhibited by omega-conotoxin MVIID (1 microM), a toxin that has a high index of discrimination against N-type channels. Conversely, nitrendipine (10 microM) had no significant effect on Ca2+ uptake in either the rat or the chicken. In conclusion, Ca2+ uptake by rat synaptosomes is potently inhibited by different P-type Ca2+ channel blockers, thus indicating that P-type channels are predominant in this preparation.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Cadmium / pharmacology
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / pharmacology
  • Calcium Channels / drug effects
  • Calcium Channels / physiology*
  • Chickens
  • Electrophysiology
  • Male
  • Mollusk Venoms / pharmacology
  • Polyamines / pharmacology
  • Potassium / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Synaptosomes / metabolism*


  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Calcium Channels
  • FTX, spider toxin
  • Mollusk Venoms
  • Polyamines
  • Cadmium
  • Potassium