Xestospongins (Xe's) A, C, D, araguspongine B, and demethylxestospongin B, a group of macrocyclic bis-1-oxaquinolizidines isolated from the Australian sponge, Xestospongia species, are shown to be potent blockers of IP3-mediated Ca2+ release from endoplasmic reticulum vesicles of rabbit cerebellum. XeC blocks IP3-induced Ca2+ release (IC50 = 358 nM) without interacting with the IP3-binding site, suggesting a mechanism that is independent of the IP3 effector site. Analysis of Pheochormocytoma cells and primary astrocytes loaded with Ca2+-sensitive dye reveals that XeC selectively blocks bradykinin- and carbamylcholine-induced Ca2+ efflux from endoplasmic reticulum stores. Xe's represent a new class of potent, membrane permeable IP3 receptor blockers exhibiting a high selectivity over ryanodine receptors. Xe's are a valuable tool for investigating the structure and function of IP3 receptors and Ca2+ signaling in neuronal and nonneuronal cells.
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