Alternative splice variants of plasma membrane calcium-ATPases in human corneal epithelium

Ernest F. Talarico, Nancy J. Mangini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations


Plasma membrane calcium-ATPases (PMCAs) play a critical role in regulating intracellular calcium concentration. Four genes encode PMCA proteins with alternative splicing of transcripts at three sites (A, B and C) serving to increase isoform diversity. Our previous work shows that all four PMCAs are expressed and have specific locations in human corneal epithelium (hCE). The present work examined which splice variants of PMCAs are expressed in hCE. Total RNA was extracted from hCE scraped from cadaver corneas of five different donors (two females and three males, age range 55-76 years). RT-PCR was performed using PMCA isoform-specific primers designed to amplify transcripts that included either splice site A or splice sites B and C. PMCA cDNAs were sequenced or cloned, and then sequenced. There was uniformity in the PMCA1 and PMCA4 expression profile among the five donors. Specifically, every donor expressed PMCA4 transcripts (4x at site A and 4b at site B/C). Every donor also expressed PMCA1 transcripts at sites B/C, specifically PMCA1b and PMCA1kb. In contrast, PMCA2 and PMCA3 expression varied; PCR DNAs were detected in two of five donors. One donor expressed PMCA2a and a novel PMCA2 variant we termed PMCA2(i). PMCA3a transcript was demonstrated in a different donor. Finally, for all the donors, bands encoding site A transcripts for PMCA4 were obtained but no PCR transcripts were detected at site A for PMCA1, PMCA2 and PMCA3. This investigation showed that hCE expressed multiple splice variants of PMCA isoforms. Furthermore, this study documented the expression of the PMCA1k variant (PMCA1kb) previously only described in intestine and pancreatic beta cells and describes a novel PMCA2(i) variant. Finally, this study suggests that the molecular configuration of PMCA1, PMCA2 and PMCA3 in the region of splice site A in hCE must be different than in other tissues since the same primers that produced site A transcripts in several other tissues were ineffective in priming PCR in hCE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)869-879
Number of pages11
JournalExperimental eye research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2007


  • alternative splice variants
  • calcium
  • cornea
  • epithelium
  • PCR
  • PMCA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems

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