Ethanol-induced intracellular calcium mobilization rapidly alters gene expression in the mouse blastocyst

Cell Calcium. 1997 Dec;22(6):463-74. doi: 10.1016/s0143-4160(97)90074-9.


The induction of intracellular Ca2+ release in pre-implantation mouse embryos accelerates their subsequent rate of development in vitro through a calmodulin-dependent mechanism [Stachecki J.J., Armant D.R. Transient release of calcium from inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate-specific stores regulates mouse pre-implantation development. Development 1996; 122: 2485-2496]. To examine the hypothesis that intracellular Ca2+ signaling alters embryonic gene expression, individual transcript levels were compared by mRNA differential display before and 1 h after intracellular Ca2+ mobilization with ethanol in mouse blastocysts. Ten up-regulated and four down-regulated genes were observed, representing 3.5% of approximately 400 transcripts that were resolved. After sequencing, most of the DNA fragments appeared to be novel; however, two amplicons that increased after Ca2+ mobilization were identified as arginase and ubiquitin conjugating enzyme (E2). The up-regulation of arginase mRNA (3.5-fold after 2 h) was confirmed by reverse transcription and the polymerase chain reaction using specific oligonucleotide primers derived from the deduced mouse embryo sequence. A corresponding 2.5-fold increase in arginase enzymatic activity peaked 9 h after ethanol exposure. Increased expression of arginase and other genes may mediate the onset of rapid cell proliferation and differentiation that is induced by Ca2+ signaling during pre-implantation development.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arginase / genetics
  • Arginase / metabolism
  • Base Sequence
  • Blastomeres
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Calcimycin / pharmacology
  • Calcium / metabolism*
  • Ethanol / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental / drug effects*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Intracellular Fluid
  • Lysophospholipids / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Rats
  • Up-Regulation


  • Lysophospholipids
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Calcimycin
  • Ethanol
  • Arginase
  • Calcium

Associated data

  • GENBANK/U88541
  • GENBANK/U89877
  • GENBANK/U94840
  • GENBANK/U94841
  • GENBANK/U94842
  • GENBANK/U94843
  • GENBANK/U94845