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Paper Chase

Formation of gap junctions by expression of connexins in Xenopus oocyte pairs.

Cell. Apr 07, 1989;57(1):145-55.
Swenson KI, Jordan JR, Beyer EC, Paul DL.

Department of Anatomy and Cellular Biology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115.


RNAs coding for connexins 32, 43, and the putative lens gap junction protein MP26 were tested for their ability to induce cell-cell coupling in Xenopus oocyte pairs. Large, voltage-insensitive conductances developed when connexin32 and 43 RNA-injected oocytes were paired both with themselves and with each other. Oocyte pairs injected with water manifested small conductances, which were symmetrically voltage-dependent. MP26 RNA-injected pairs displayed no conductances above control values. Unexpectedly, connexin43/water oocyte pairs developed high, asymmetrically voltage-dependent conductances, a property not displayed by the connexin32/water pairs. In single oocytes, these proteins remained intracellular until pairing, at which time the connexins, but not MP26, concentrated at the appositional areas.