Carboxy terminus and pore-forming domain properties specific to Cx37 are necessary for Cx37-mediated suppression of insulinoma cell proliferation

Tasha K. Nelson, Paul L. Sorgen, Janis M. Burt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Scopus citations


Connexin 37 (Cx37) suppresses cell proliferation when expressed in rat insulinoma (Rin) cells, an effect also manifest in vivo during vascular development and in response to tissue injury. Mutant forms of Cx37 with nonfunctional channels but normally localized, wild-type carboxy termini are not growth suppressive. Here we determined whether the carboxy-terminal (CT) domain is required for Cx37-mediated growth suppression and whether the Cx37 pore-forming domain can be replaced with the Cx43 pore-forming domain and still retain growth-suppressive properties. We show that despite forming functional gap junction channels and hemichannels, Cx37 with residues subsequent to 273 replaced with a V5-epitope tag (Cx37-273tr*V5) had no effect on the proliferation of Rin cells, did not facilitate G1-cell cycle arrest with serum deprivation, and did not prolong cell cycle time comparably to the wild-type protein. The chimera Cx43*CT37, comprising the pore-forming domain of Cx43 and CT of Cx37, also did not suppress proliferation, despite forming functional gap junctions with a permselective profile similar to wild-type Cx37. Differences in channel behavior of both Cx37-273tr*V5 and Cx43*CT37 relative to their wild-type counterparts and failure of the Cx37-CT to interact as the Cx43-CT does with the Cx43 cytoplasmic loop suggest that the Cx37-CT and pore-forming domains are both essential to growth suppression by Cx37.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)C1246-C1256
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 15 2013



  • Connexin
  • Endothelium
  • Gap junction channel
  • Growth suppression
  • Protein interactome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cell Biology

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