Here we demonstrated, by RT-PCR analysis, the expression of both angiotensin II (Ang II) receptor subtypes, AT1 and AT2, in a breast cancer epithelial cell line, MCF-7. Ang II was not able to affect the intracellular Ca2+ concentration in Fura-2 loaded cells suggesting that AT1-mediated phospholipid hydrolysis is not involved in its intracellular transduction pathway. Ang II modulated the activity of the Na+/K+ ATPase in a dose- and time-dependent manner and was mitogenic, with a dose-dependent (1-1000 nM) proliferative effect and a maximal response at 100 nM. Both Na+/K+ ATPase activation and stimulation of proliferation were mediated by binding of Ang II to AT1, as the effects were completely blocked by DuP 753, a specific AT1 antagonist. CGP 42112, an AT2 antagonist, did not affect Ang II actions. The main conclusion of this study is that Ang II exerts its effects on cell proliferation and Na+/K+ ATPase in breast cancer epithelial cells, MCF-7, via AT1 activation independently of the Ca2+ signalling mechanism.
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