Cardiac myocytes coexpress multiple protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms which likely play distinct roles in signaling pathways leading to changes in contractility, hypertrophy, and ischemic preconditioning. Although PKC has been reported to be activated during myocardial ischemia, the effect of ischemia/hypoxia on individual PKC isoforms has not been determined. This study examines the effect of hypoxia on the subcellular distribution of individual PKC isoforms in cultured neonatal rat ventricular myocytes. Hypoxia induces the redistribution of PKC alpha and PKC epsilon from the soluble to the particulate compartment. This effect (which is presumed to represent activation of PKC alpha and PKC epsilon) is detectable by 1 h, sustained for up to 24 h, and reversible within 1 h of reoxygenation. Inhibition of phospholipase C with tricyclodecan-9-yl-xanthogenate (D609) prevents the hypoxia-induced redistribution of PKC alpha and PKC epsilon, whereas chelation of intracellular calcium with 1,2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (BAPTA) blocks the redistribution of PKC alpha, but not PKC epsilon; D609 and BAPTA do not influence the partitioning of PKC alpha and PKC epsilon in normoxic myocytes. Hypoxia, in contrast, decreases the membrane association of PKC delta via a mechanism that is distinct from the hypoxia-induced translocation/activation of PKC alpha/PKC epsilon, since the response is slower in onset, slowly reversible upon reoxygenation, and not blocked by D609 or BAPTA. The hypoxia-induced shift of PKC delta to the soluble compartment does not prevent subsequent 4-beta phorbol 12-myristate-13-acetate-dependent translocation/activation of PKC delta. Hypoxia does not alter the abundance of any PKC isoform nor does it alter the subcellular distribution of PKC lambda. The selective hypoxia-induced activation of PKC isoforms through a pathway involving phospholipase C (PKC alpha/PKC epsilon) and intracellular calcium (PKC alpha) may critically influence cardiac myocyte contractility, gene expression, and/or tolerance to ischemia.
M Goldberg, H L Zhang, S F Steinberg