Normal Ca2+ extrusion by the Ca2+ pump of intact red blood cells exposed to high glucose concentrations

Julia E. Raftos*, Amanda Edgley, Robert M. Bookchin, Zipora Etzion, Virgilio L. Lew, Teresa Tiffert

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


The ATPase activity of the plasma membrane Ca2+ pump (PMCA) has been reported to be inhibited by exposure of red blood cell (RBC) PMCA preparations to high glucose concentrations. It has been claimed that this effect could have potential pathophysiological relevance in diabetes. To ascertain whether high glucose levels also affect PMCA transport function in intact RBCs, Ca2+ extrusion by the Ca2+-saturated pump [PMCA maximal velocity (Vmax)] was measured in human and rat RBCs exposed to high glucose in vivo or in vitro. Preincubation of normal human RBCs in 30-100 mM glucose for up to 6 h had no effect on PMCA Vmax. The mean Vmax of RBCs from 15 diabetic subjects of 12.9 ± 0.7 mmol·340 g Hb-1·h-1 was not significantly different from that of controls (14.3 ± 0.5 mmol.340 g Hb-1·h-1). Similarly, the PMCA Vmax of RBCs from 11 streptozotocin-diabetic rats was not affected by plasma glucose levels more than three times normal for 6-8 wk. Thus exposure to high glucose concentrations does not affect the ability of intact RBCs to extrude Ca2+.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)C1449-C1454
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2001


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