Time filter

Source Type

Uvin P.,Laboratory of Experimental Urology | Uvin P.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Uvin P.,Catholic University of Leuven | Everaerts W.,Laboratory of Experimental Urology | And 20 more authors.
Journal of Visualized Experiments | Year: 2012

The lower urinary tract (LUT) functions as a dynamic reservoir that is able to store urine and to efficiently expel it at a convenient time. While storing urine, however, the bladder is exposed for prolonged periods to waste products. By acting as a tight barrier, the epithelial lining of the LUT, the urothelium, avoids re-absorption of harmful substances. Moreover, noxious chemicals stimulate the bladder's nociceptive innervation and initiate voiding contractions that expel the bladder's contents. Interestingly, the bladder's sensitivity to noxious chemicals has been used successfully in clinical practice, by intravesically infusing the TRPV1 agonist capsaicin to treat neurogenic bladder overactivity1. This underscores the advantage of viewing the bladder as a chemosensory organ and prompts for further clinical research. However, ethical issues severely limit the possibilities to perform, in human subjects, the invasive measurements that are necessary to unravel the molecular bases of LUT clinical pharmacology. A way to overcome this limitation is the use of several animal models2. Here we describe the implementation of cystometry in mice and rats, a technique that allows measuring the intravesical pressure in conditions of controlled bladder perfusion. After laparotomy, a catheter is implanted in the bladder dome and tunneled subcutaneously to the interscapular region. Then the bladder can be filled at a controlled rate, while the urethra is left free for micturition. During the repetitive cycles of filling and voiding, intravesical pressure can be measured via the implanted catheter. As such, the pressure changes can be quantified and analyzed. Moreover, simultaneous measurement of the voided volume allows distinguishing voiding contractions from non-voiding contractions3. Importantly, due to the differences in micturition control between rodents and humans, cystometric measurements in these animals have only limited translational value4. Nevertheless, they are quite instrumental in the study of bladder pathophysiology and pharmacology in experimental pre-clinical settings. Recent research using this technique has revealed the key role of novel molecular players in the mechano- and chemo-sensory properties of the bladder.


Gees M.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Alpizar Y.A.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Boonen B.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Sanchez A.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | And 9 more authors.
Molecular Pharmacology | Year: 2013

Allyl isothiocyanate (AITC; aka, mustard oil) is a powerful irritant produced by Brassica plants as a defensive trait against herbivores and confers pungency to mustard and wasabi. AITC is widely used experimentally as an inducer of acute pain and neurogenic inflammation, which are largely mediated by the activation of nociceptive cation channels transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 and transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1). Although it is generally accepted that electrophilic agents activate these channels through covalent modification of cytosolic cysteine residues, the mechanism underlying TRPV1 activation by AITC remains unknown. Here we show that, surprisingly, AITC-induced activation of TRPV1 does not require interaction with cysteine residues, but is largely dependent on S513, a residue that is involved in capsaicin binding. Furthermore, AITC acts in a membrane-delimited manner and induces a shift of the voltage dependence of activation toward negative voltages, which is reminiscent of capsaicin effects. These data indicate that AITC acts through reversible interactions with the capsaicin binding site. In addition, we show that TRPV1 is a locus for cross-sensitization between AITC and acidosis in nociceptive neurons. Furthermore, we show that residue F660, which is known to determine the stimulation by low pH in human TRPV1, is also essential for the cross-sensitization of the effects of AITC and low pH. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that not all reactive electrophiles stimulate TRPV1 via cysteine modification and help understanding the molecular bases underlying the surprisingly large role of this channel as mediator of the algesic properties of AITC. Copyright © 2013 by The American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.


Alpizar Y.A.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Boonen B.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Gees M.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | Sanchez A.,Laboratory for Ion Channel Research | And 4 more authors.
Pflugers Archiv European Journal of Physiology | Year: 2014

The powerful plant-derived irritant allyl isothiocyanate (AITC, aka mustard oil) induces hyperalgesia to heat in rodents and humans through mechanisms that are not yet fully understood. It is generally believed that AITC activates the broadly tuned chemosensory cation channel transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily A member 1 (TRPA1), triggering an inflammatory response that sensitizes the heat sensor transient receptor potential cation channel subfamily V member 1 (TRPV1). In the view of recent data demonstrating that AITC can directly activate TRPV1, we here explored the possibility that this compound sensitizes TRPV1 to heat stimulation in a TRPA1-independent manner. Patch-clamp recordings and intracellular Ca2+ imaging experiments in HEK293T cells over-expressing mouse TRPV1 revealed that the increase in channel activation induced by heating is larger in the presence of AITC than in control conditions. The analysis of the effects of AITC and heat on the current-voltage relationship of TRPV1 indicates that the mechanism of sensitization is based on additive shifts of the voltage dependence of activation towards negative voltages. Finally, intracellular Ca2+ imaging experiments in mouse sensory neurons isolated from Trpa1 KO mice yielded that AITC enhances the response to heat, specifically in the subpopulation expressing TRPV1. Furthermore, this effect was strongly reduced by the TRPV1 inhibitor capsazepine and virtually absent in neurons isolated from double Trpa1/Trpv1 KO mice. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that TRPV1 is a locus for cross sensitization between AITC and heat in sensory neurons and may help explaining, at least in part, the role of this channel in AITC-induced hyperalgesia to heat. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Loading Laboratory for Ion Channel Research collaborators
Loading Laboratory for Ion Channel Research collaborators