Chemotaxis of newt eosinophils: calcium regulation of chemotactic response

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Department of Physiology

Publication Date


Document Type



Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


Local chemical events underlying chemotaxis were characterized in a new model cell, the newt eosinophil. These cells exhibit a chemotactic response to a trypsin-sensitive component of newt serum. Ca2+ plays a role in this process, since treatments expected to diminish Ca2+ availability from the medium [ethylene glycol-bis (beta-aminoethyl ether)-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid, Co2+, and verapamil], to break down transmembrane Ca2+ gradients (ionomycin), or to interfere with the function of intracellular Ca2+ stores (caffeine and neomycin) inhibited cell polarization and movement. Using imaging techniques we found that cytosolic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) increased in response to newt serum. Migrating newt eosinophils exhibited a dynamic heterogeneous distribution of [Ca2+]i. [Ca2+]i was elevated in cells undergoing a change of direction relative to cells migrating persistently in one direction. Migrating cells contained gradients of [Ca2+]i along their long axis, with the front of the cell having consistently lower [Ca2+]i than the rear. When cells were loaded with the cell-permeant form of fura 2, fura 2 acetoxymethyl ester, a caffeine-sensitive membrane-delimited region of elevated [Ca2+]i was seen associated with the microtubule organizing center. A model is proposed relating the distribution of [Ca2+]i and the location of the external stimulus to the generation and interaction of substances within the cell that both simulate and inhibit increases in [Ca2+]i.

DOI of Published Version



Am J Physiol. 1993 Dec;265(6 Pt 1):C1527-43.

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The American journal of physiology

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

PubMed ID