Membrane-permeable calmodulin inhibitors (e.g. W-7/W-13) bind to membranes, changing the electrostatic surface potential: Dual effect of W-13 on epidermal growth factor receptor activation

Parijat Sengupta, María José Ruano, Francesc Tebar, Urszula Golebiewska, Irina Zaitseva, Carlos Enrich, Stuart McLaughlin, Antonio Villalobo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Membrane-permeable calmodulin inhibitors, such as the napthalenesulfonamide derivatives W-7/W-13, trifluoperazine, and calmidazolium, are used widely to investigate the role of calcium/calmodulin (Ca2+/CaM) in living cells. If two chemically different inhibitors (e.g. W-7 and trifluoperazine) produce similar effects, investigators often assume the effects are due to CaM inhibition. Zeta potential measurements, however, show that these amphipathic weak bases bind to phospholipid vesicles at the same concentrations as they inhibit Ca2+/CaM; this suggests that they also bind to the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane, reducing its negative electrostatic surface potential. This change will cause electrostatically bound clusters of basic residues on peripheral (e.g. Src and K-Ras4B) and integral (e.g. epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)) proteins to translocate from the membrane to the cytoplasm. We measured inhibitor-mediated translocation of a simple basic peptide corresponding to the calmodulin-binding juxtamembrane region of the EGFR on model membranes; W-7/W-13 causes translocation of this peptide from membrane to solution, suggesting that caution must be exercised when interpreting the results obtained with these inhibitors in living cells. We present evidence that they exert dual effects on autophosphorylation of EGFR; W-13 inhibits epidermal growth factor-dependent EGFR autophosphorylation under different experimental conditions, but in the absence of epidermal growth factor, W-13 stimulates autophosphorylation of the receptor in four different cell types. Our interpretation is that the former effect is due to W-13 inhibition of Ca 2+/CaM, but the latter results could be due to binding of W-13 to the plasma membrane.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8474-8486
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume282
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 16 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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