Chronic hypoxia selectively enhances L- and T-type voltage-dependent Ca2+ channel activity in pulmonary artery by upregulating Cav1.2 and Cav3.2

Jun Wan, Aya Yamamura, Adriana M. Zimnicka, Guillaume Voiriot, Kimberly A. Smith, Haiyang Tang, Ramon J. Ayon, Moumita S.R. Choudhury, Eun A. Ko, Jun Wang, Chen Wang, Ayako Makino, Jason X.J. Yuan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Scopus citations


Hypoxia-induced pulmonary hypertension (HPH) is characterized by sustained pulmonary vasoconstriction and vascular remodeling, both of which are mediated by pulmonary artery smooth muscle cell (PASMC) contraction and proliferation, respectively. An increase in cytosolic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]cyt) is a major trigger for pulmonary vasoconstriction and an important stimulus for cell proliferation in PASMCs. Ca2+ influx through voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels (VDCC) is an important pathway for the regulation of [Ca2+]cyt. The potential role for L- and T-type VDCC in the development of HPH is still unclear. Using a hypoxic-induced pulmonary hypertension mouse model, we undertook this study to identify if VDCC in pulmonary artery (PA) are functionally upregulated and determine which type of VDCC are altered in HPH. Mice subjected to chronic hypoxia developed pulmonary hypertension within 4 wk, and high-K+- and U-46619-induced contraction of PA was greater in chronic hypoxic mice than that in normoxic control mice. Additionally, we demonstrate that high-K+- and U-46619-induced Ca2+ influx in PASMC is significantly increased in the hypoxic group. The VDCC activator, Bay K8864, induced greater contraction of the PA of hypoxic mice than in that of normoxic mice in isometric force measurements. L-type and T-type VDCC blockers significantly attenuated absolute contraction of the PA in hypoxic mice. Chronic hypoxia did not increase high-K+- and U-46619-induced contraction of mesenteric artery (MA). Compared with MA, PA displayed higher expression of calcium channel voltage-dependent L-type α1C-subunit (Cav1.2) and T-type α1H-subunit (Cav3.2) upon exposure to chronic hypoxia. In conclusion, both L-type and T-type VDCC were functionally upregulated in PA, but not MA, in HPH mice, which could result from selectively increased expression of Cav1.2 and Cav3.2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L154-L164
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jul 15 2013


  • Calcium channel voltage-dependent L-type α-subunit
  • Calcium channel voltage-dependent T-type α-subunit
  • Hypoxia
  • Mouse
  • Pulmonary artery
  • Voltage-dependent calcium ion channel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology


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