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IP3R-mediated Ca2+ signals govern hematopoietic and cardiac divergence of Flk1+ cells via the calcineurin-NFATc3-Etv2 pathway.

Abstract
Ca2+ signals participate in various cellular processes with spatial and temporal dynamics, among which, inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors (IP3Rs)-mediated Ca2+ signals are essential for early development. However, the underlying mechanisms of IP3R-regulated cell fate decision remain largely unknown. Here we report that IP3Rs are required for the hematopoietic and cardiac fate divergence of mouse embryonic stem cells (mESCs). Deletion of IP3Rs (IP3R-tKO) reduced Flk1+/PDGFRα- hematopoietic mesoderm, c-Kit+/CD41+ hematopoietic progenitor cell population, and the colony-forming unit activity, but increased cardiac progenitor markers as well as cardiomyocytes. Concomitantly, the expression of a key regulator of hematopoiesis, Etv2, was reduced in IP3R-tKO cells, which could be rescued by the activation of Ca2+ signals and calcineurin or overexpression of constitutively active form of NFATc3. Furthermore, IP3R-tKO impaired specific targeting of Etv2 by NFATc3 via its evolutionarily conserved cis-element in differentiating ESCs. Importantly, the activation of Ca2+-calcineurin-NFAT pathway reversed the phenotype of IP3R-tKO cells. These findings reveal an unrecognized governing role of IP3Rs in hematopoietic and cardiac fate commitment via IP3Rs-Ca2+-calcineurin-NFATc3-Etv2 pathway.

PMID: 28419336 [Pubmed - Publisher]

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