Modulation of erythrocyte deformability by PKC activity

Sofia De Oliveira, Ana S. Silva-Herdade, Carlota Saldanha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


The interactions between membrane, peripheral and cytoskeleton proteins are responsible for the maintenance of erythrocyte deformability (EEI) and some of these interactions are modulated by PKC activity. Protein band 3 of the erythrocyte membrane is phosphorylated by phosphotyrosine kinases (PTK) and dephosphorylated by phosphotyrosine phosphatase (PTP). It was previously described by us a signal transduction mechanism that describes a possible pathway connecting an erythrocyte external membrane protein, acetylcholinesterase (AChE), with protein band 3. So how does PKC activity modulate EEI when protein band 3 is phosphorylated or dephosphorylated in absence or presence of AChE effectors? To answer this we used phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) as an activator and chelerythrine chloride as inhibitor of PKC and also band 3 modulators of band 3 phosphorylation degree, in presence and absence of AChE effectors in order to measure in whole blood samples EEI. Our results showed that erythrocyte deformability was significantly (i) decreased by inhibition of PKC, in absence and presence of AChE inhibitor velnacrine (ii) increased with PMA in absence and presence of ACh and (iii) decreased in presence of calpeptin in absence and presence of either chelerythrine or PMA. These results establish dependence between cytoskeleton proteins, PKC activity, band 3 phosphorylation degrees and EEI. Better understanding of those proteins interactions on transduction mechanisms might trigger possible targets for drug action that would modulate EEI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)363-373
Number of pages11
JournalClinical Hemorheology and Microcirculation
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Acetylcholinesterase
  • Cytoskeleton
  • Erythrocyte protein band 3
  • Phosphotyrosine phosphatase
  • Protein kinase C
  • Protein tyrosine kinases

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Hematology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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