The purpose of this study was to clarify the roles of ERM proteins (ezrin/radixin/moesin) in the regulation of membrane localization and transport activity of transporters at the human blood–brain barrier (BBB). Ezrin or moesin knockdown in a human in vitro BBB model cell line (hCMEC/D3) reduced both BCRP and GLUT1 protein expression levels on the plasma membrane. Radixin knockdown reduced not only BCRP and GLUT1, but also P-gp membrane expression. These results indicate that P-gp, BCRP and GLUT1 proteins are maintained on the plasma membrane via different ERM proteins. Furthermore, moesin knockdown caused the largest decrease of P-gp and BCRP efflux activity among the ERM proteins, whereas GLUT1 influx activity was similarly reduced by knockdown of each ERM protein. To investigate how moesin knockdown reduced P-gp efflux activity without loss of P-gp from the plasma membrane, we examined the role of PKCβI. PKCβI increased P-gp phosphorylation and reduced P-gp efflux activity. Radixin and moesin proteins were detected in isolated human brain capillaries, and their protein abundances were within a 3-fold range, compared with those in hCMEC/D3 cell line. These findings may mean that ezrin, radixin and moesin maintain the functions of different transporters in different ways at the human BBB.
- Blood–brain barrier
- ERM proteins
- breast cancer resistance protein
- glucose transporter 1
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine