The Na +/H + exchanger NHE1 is required for directional migration stimulated via PDGFR-α in the primary cilium

Linda Schneider, Christian Martin Stock, Peter Dieterich, Bo Hammer Jensen, Lotte Bang Pedersen, Peter Satir, Albrecht Schwab, Soøren Tvorup Christensen, Stine Falsig Pedersen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Scopus citations


We previously demonstrated that the primary cilium coordinates platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) receptor (PDGFR) α-mediated migration in growth-arrested fibroblasts. In this study, we investigate the functional relationship between ciliary PDGFR-α and the Na +/H + exchanger NHE1 in directional cell migration. NHE1 messenger RNA and protein levels are up-regulated in NIH3T3 cells and mouse embryonic fibro-blasts (MEFs) during growth arrest, which is concomitant with cilium formation. NHE1 up-regulation is unaffected in Tg737 orpk MEFs, which have no or very short primary cilia. In growth-arrested NIH3T3 cells, NHE1 is activated by the specific PDGFR-a ligand PDGF-AA. In wound-healing assays on growth-arrested NIH3T3 cells and wild-type MEFs, NHE1 inhibition by 5'-(N-ethyl-N-isopropyl) amiloride potently reduces PDGF-AA-mediated directional migration. These effects are strongly attenuated in inter-phase NIH3T3 cells, which are devoid of primary cilia, and in Tg737 orpk MEFs. PDGF-AA failed to stimulate migration in NHE1-null fibroblasts. In conclusion, stimulation of directional migration in response to ciliary PDGFR-α signals is specifically dependent on NHE1 activity, indicating that NHE1 activation is a critical event in the physiological response to PDGFR-a stimulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-176
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Cell Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 6 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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