Ca2+-triggers massive exocytosis in Chinese hamster ovary cells

J. R. Coorssen, H. Schmitt, W. Almers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

114 Scopus citations


We have tracked the cell surface area of CHO cells by measuring the membrane capacitance, C(m). An increase in cytosolic [Ca2+], [Ca2+](i), increased the cell surface area by 20-30%. At micromolar [Ca2+](i) the increase occurred in minutes, while at 20 μM or higher [Ca2+](i) it occurred in seconds and was transient. GTPγS caused a 3% increase even at 0.1 μM [Ca2+](i). We conclude that CHO cells, previously thought capable only of constitutive exocytosis, can perform Ca2+-triggered exocytosis that is both massive and rapid. Ca2+-triggered exocytosis was also observed in 3T3 fibroblasts. Our findings add evidence to the view that Ca induces exocytosis in cells other than known secretory cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3787-3791
Number of pages5
JournalEMBO Journal
Issue number15
StatePublished - Aug 1 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • 3T3 fibroblasts
  • Endocytosis
  • Flash photolysis
  • GTPγS
  • Plasmalemmal repair

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology


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