Intracellular calcium in the isolated rat liver: Correlation to glucose release, K+ balance and bile flow

R. Wurzinger, R. Englisch, S. Roka, R. Langer, M. Roden, J. Graf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)


This study correlates whole organ measurements of intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) with hormone-induced (epinephrine, vasopressin) changes of liver functions (glucose release, K+ balance and bile flow). [Ca2+]i was measured in the isolated perfused rat liver using the sensor Fura-2 and applying liver surface fluorescence spectroscopy. The technique was improved by (i) minimizing biliary elimination of the sensor by employing a rat strain deficient in canalicular organic anion transport (TR- mutation) and (ii) by correcting for changes of interfering intrinsic organ fluorescence that was shown to depend on the oxidation-reduction state (NAD(P)H content) of the organ. Epinephrine (50 nM) elicits an instantaneous peak rise of [Ca2+]i to approx. 400 nM, followed by a sustained elevation that depends on the presence of extracellular Ca2+. The rise of [Ca2+]i coincides with initiation of glucose release, transient K+ uptake, and transient stimulation of bile flow. Vasopressin (2 nM) exerts qualitatively similar effects. The transient rise of bile flow is attributed to Ca2+-mediated contraction of the pericanalicular actin-myosin web of hepatocytes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-412
Number of pages10
JournalCell Calcium
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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