We have, for the first time, developed a reliable method for freshly isolating viable endothelial cells from resistance-sized rat pulmonary arteries. The endothelial origin of these cells was confirmed using indirect immunofluorescence, utilizing fluorescently labeled low-density lipoprotein. Biophysical and pharmacological patch-clamp experiments conducted under quasiphysiological cationic gradients revealed that these cells had a mean resting membrane potential of ~ -38 mV and displayed a delayed-rectifying K+ current. Immunohistochemical staining of rat lung cross-sections revealed an abundance of K(V)1.5 channel protein in pulmonary endothelium. This is the first report of a delayed-rectifying K+ current in endothelial cells of resistance-sized pulmonary arteries. Since changes in membrane potential associated with K+ channel activity affect release of vasoactive substances from endothelial cells, this finding has important implications for understanding the mechanisms underlying control of pulmonary vascular tone.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 24 1999|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology