Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Biophysics, Russian Academy of Sciences, 142290, Institutskaya 3, Pushchino, Moscow Region, Russia; Institute of Higher Nervous Activity and Neurophysiology, Russian Academy of Sciences, 117485, Butlerova 5A, Moscow, Russia. Electronic address: [Email]
Imidazoline receptor of the first type (I1R) in addition to the established inhibition of sympathetic neurons may mediate the direct control of myocellular functions. Earlier, we revealed that I1-mediated signaling in the normotensive rat cardiomyocytes suppresses the nitric oxide production by endothelial NO synthase, impairs sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase (SERCA) activity, and elevates intracellular calcium in the cytosol. Also, I1-agonists counteract β-adrenoceptor stimulation effects in respect to voltage-gated calcium currents. This study ascertains the I1R signal transduction in the normotensive Wistar and SHR cardiomyocytes. Reduction of Ca2+-currents by rilmenidine, a specific agonist of I1R, ensued from the phosphatidylcholine-specific phospholipase C-mediated activation of protein kinase C. There is a stimulation of serine/threonine phosphatase activity. In SHR cardiomyocytes, both the rilmenidine, and putative endogenous ligand, agmatine, almost twofold less effectively reduced L-type of Ca2+-currents. Average mRNA level of Nischarin, established functional component of I1R, is slightly decreased in SHR, as well as the intracellular Nischarin pool immunolabeled in the cytosol of SHR cardiomyocytes. Disturbance of I1R signal transduction in SHR may aggravate the development of this cardiovascular pathology.