Caveolin-1 and lipid microdomains regulate Gs trafficking and attenuate Gs/adenylyl cyclase signaling

John A. Allen, Jiang Z. Yu, Rahul H. Dave, Anushree Bhatnagar, Bryan L. Roth, Mark M. Rasenick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Lipid rafts and caveolae are specialized membrane microdomains implicated in regulating G protein-coupled receptor signaling cascades. Previous studies have suggested that rafts/ caveolae may regulate β-adrenergic receptor/Gαs signaling, but underlying molecular mechanisms are largely undefined. Using a simplified model system in C6 glioma cells, this study disrupts rafts/caveolae using both pharmacological and genetic approaches to test whether caveolin-1 and lipid microdomains regulate Gs trafficking and signaling. Lipid rafts/caveolae were disrupted in C6 cells by either short-term cholesterol chelation using methyl-β-cyclodextrin or by stable knockdown of caveolin-1 and -2 by RNA interference. In imaging studies examining Gαs-GFP during signaling, stimulation with the βAR agonist isoproterenol resulted in internalization of Gαs-GFP; however, this trafficking was blocked by methyl-β-cyclodextrin or by caveolin knockdown. Caveolin knockdown significantly decreased Gαs localization in detergent insoluble lipid raft/caveolae membrane fractions, suggesting that caveolin localizes a portion of Gαs to these membrane microdomains. Methyl-β-cyclodextrin or caveolin knockdown significantly increased isoproterenol or thyrotropin- stimulated cAMP accumulation. Furthermore, forskolin- and aluminum tetrafluoride-stimulated adenylyl cyclase activity was significantly increased by caveolin knockdown in cells or in brain membranes obtained from caveolin-1 knockout mice, indicating that caveolin attenuates signaling at the level of Gαs/ adenylyl cyclase and distal to GPCRs. Taken together, these results demonstrate that caveolin-1 and lipid microdomains exert a major effect on Gαs trafficking and signaling. It is suggested that lipid rafts/caveolae are sites that remove Gαs from membrane signaling cascades and caveolins might dampen globally Gαs/ adenylyl cyclase/cAMP signaling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1082-1093
Number of pages12
JournalMolecular pharmacology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2009
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology


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