Extracellular calcium affects the membrane currents of cultured human keratinocytes

Theodora M. Mauro, Pamela A. Pappone, Roslyn Rivkah Isseroff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Electrophysiologic properties of cultured human keratinocytes were studied using the patch voltage-clamp technique. Undifferentiated, proliferate keratinocytes grown in low Ca2+ medium had an average resting membrane potential of -24 mV. Voltage-clamp experiments showed that these cells had two membrane ionic currents: a large voltage-independent leak conductance, and a smaller voltage-dependent Cl- current that activated with depolarization. Increasing the extracellular Ca2+ concentration from 0.15 to 2 mM resulted in a doubling of the magnitude of the voltage-gated current and a shift in current activation to more negative potentials. Since levels of extracellular Ca2+ can alter the morphology and differentiation state of keratinocytes, the finding of a Ca2+-activated Cl- current in these cells suggests a role for this conductance in the initiation of differentiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13-20
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cellular Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology
  • Physiology


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