Removal of FKBP12/12.6 from endothelial ryanodine receptors leads to an intracellular calcium leak and endothelial dysfunction. Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVES: FK506 Binding Protein 12 and its related isoform 12.6 (FKBP12/12.6) stabilize a closed state of intracellular Ca2+ release channels (ryanodine receptors [RyRs]), and in myocytes removal of FKBP12/12.6 from RyRs alters intracellular Ca2+ levels. The immunosuppressive drugs rapamycin and FK506 bind and displace FKBP12/12.6 from RyRs, and can also cause endothelial dysfunction and hypertension. We tested whether rapamycin and FK506 cause an intracellular Ca2+ leak in endothelial cells and whether this affects endothelial function and blood pressure regulation. METHODS AND RESULTS: Rapamycin or FK506 concentration-dependently caused a Ca2+ leak in isolated endothelial cells, decreased aortic NO production and endothelium-dependent dilation, and increased systolic blood pressure in control mice. Rapamycin or FK506 at 10 micromol/L abolished aortic NO production and endothelium-dependent dilation. Similar results were obtained in isolated endothelial cells and aortas from FKBP12.6-/- mice after displacement of FKBP12 with 1 micromol/L rapamycin or FK506. In hypertensive FKBP12.6-/- mice, systolic blood pressures were further elevated after treatment with either rapamycin or FK506. Blockade of the Ca2+ leak with ryanodine normalized NO production and endothelium-dependent dilation. CONCLUSIONS: Complete removal of FKBP12 and 12.6 from endothelial RyRs induces an intracellular Ca2+ leak which may contribute to the pathogenesis of endothelial dysfunction and hypertension caused by rapamycin or FK506.

published proceedings

  • Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol

author list (cited authors)

  • Long, C., Cook, L. G., Wu, G., & Mitchell, B. M.

citation count

  • 35

complete list of authors

  • Long, Cheng||Cook, Leslie G||Wu, Gang-Yi||Mitchell, Brett M

publication date

  • July 2007