Calcium induced fusion of isolated secretory vesicles from the islet of Langerhans

Gerhard Dahl, M. Gratzl

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

31 Scopus citations


Isolated endocrine pancreatic secretory vesicles were exposed to series of cations. As revealed by freeze cleaving only Ca2+ was able to cause fusion of these vesicles forming a common lumen. Ca2+ specific fusion was preceded by an aggregation of membrane associated particles. Particle aggregation also occurred in vesicles incubated with the other cations (Ba2+, Sr2+, Mn2+, Mg2+, La3+) tested in 10-4 M concentrations. Fusion occurred in the assumed physiological range of free intracellular Ca2+ concentration. Fusion of secretory vesicles can already be observed at 10-6 M Ca2+ and is maximum at 10-5 M Ca2+, indicating that small variations of intracellular free calcium concentration may trigger fusion of secretory vesicles. As the Ca2+ specific fusion of isolated secretory vesicles takes place with the same morphological changes observed in intact cells during fusion of the vesicle membrane with the plasma membrane in the exocytotic process, it is concluded that Ca2+ may act as the final intracellular trigger in stimulus secretion coupling.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCytobiologie
Number of pages12
StatePublished - Dec 1 1976
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Anatomy


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