Cell-specific effects on surface a7 nicotinic receptor expression revealed by over-expression and knockdown of rat RIC3 protein.

Journal of neurochemistry

PubMedID: 23157401

Koperniak TM, Garg BK, Boltax J, Loring RH. Cell-specific effects on surface a7 nicotinic receptor expression revealed by over-expression and knockdown of rat RIC3 protein. J Neurochem. 2013;124(3):300-9.
We tested whether surface a7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor expression is dependent on an endogenous chaperone named Resistance to Inhibitors of Cholinesterase 3 (RIC3) by comparing RIC3 protein in rat GH4C1 and human SH-EP1 cells, which express strikingly different surface receptor levels following a7 transfection. Cloned rat RIC3 exists in at least two isoforms because of an ambiguous splice site between exons 4 and 5. Both rat isoforms permit surface a7 expression in SH-EP1 and human embryonic kidney (HEK) cells measured by a-bungarotoxin binding. Contrary to expectations, endogenous RIC3 protein expression determined by immunoblots did not differ between untransfected GH4C1 or SH-EP1 cells. siRNA against rat RIC3 exon 4 and shRNA against exons 2, 5 and 6 knocked down transfected rat RIC3 expression in SH-EP1 cells and simultaneously blocked toxin binding. However, no RNAi construct blocked binding when co-transfected with a7 into GH4C1 cells. shRNA against rat exons 2 and 5 knocked down rat RIC3 protein transfected into GH4C1 cells with a time course suggesting a protein half-life of a few days. These results suggest GH4C1 cells may possess unknown chaperone(s) allowing high surface a7 expression in the absence of known RIC3 splice variants.