Alpha5beta1 integrin engagement increases large conductance, Ca2+-activated K+ channel current and Ca2+ sensitivity through c-src-mediated channel phosphorylation. Academic Article uri icon


  • Large conductance, calcium-activated K(+) (BK) channels are important regulators of cell excitability and recognized targets of intracellular kinases. BK channel modulation by tyrosine kinases, including focal adhesion kinase and c-src, suggests their potential involvement in integrin signaling. Recently, we found that fibronectin, an endogenous alpha5beta1 integrin ligand, enhances BK channel current through both Ca(2+)- and phosphorylation-dependent mechanisms in vascular smooth muscle. Here, we show that macroscopic currents from HEK 293 cells expressing murine BK channel alpha-subunits (mSlo) are acutely potentiated following alpha5beta1 integrin activation. The effect occurs in a Ca(2+)-dependent manner, 1-3 min after integrin engagement. After integrin activation, normalized conductance-voltage relations for mSlo are left-shifted at free Ca(2+) concentrations >or=1 microm. Overexpression of human c-src with mSlo, in the absence of integrin activation, leads to similar shifts in mSlo Ca(2+) sensitivity, whereas overexpression of catalytically inactive c-src blocks integrin-induced potentiation. However, neither integrin activation nor c-src overexpression potentiates current in BK channels containing a point mutation at Tyr-766. Biochemical tests confirmed the critical importance of residue Tyr-766 in integrin-induced channel phosphorylation. Thus, BK channel activity is enhanced by alpha5beta1 integrin activation, likely through an intracellular signaling pathway involving c-src phosphorylation of the channel alpha-subunit at Tyr-766. The net result is increased current amplitude, enhanced Ca(2+) sensitivity, and rate of activation of the BK channel, which would collectively promote smooth muscle hyperpolarization in response to integrin-extracellular matrix interactions.

published proceedings

  • J Biol Chem

author list (cited authors)

  • Yang, Y., Wu, X., Gui, P., Wu, J., Sheng, J., Ling, S., ... Davis, M. J.

citation count

  • 37

complete list of authors

  • Yang, Yan||Wu, Xin||Gui, Peichun||Wu, Jianbo||Sheng, Jian-Zhong||Ling, Shizhang||Braun, Andrew P||Davis, George E||Davis, Michael J

publication date

  • January 2010