Lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) induces diverse biological responses in many types of cells and tissues by activating its specific G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs). Previously, three cognate LPA GPCRs (LP A1/VZG-1/EDG-2, LPA2/EDG-4, and LPA3/EDG-7) were identified in mammals. By contrast, an unrelated GPCR, PSP24, was reported to be a high affinity LPA receptor in Xenopus laevis oocytes, raising the possibility that Xenopus uses a very different form of LPA signaling. Toward addressing this issue, we report two novel Xenopus genes, xlpA1-1 and xlpA1-2, encoding LPA1 homologs (∼90% amino acid sequence identity with mammalian LPA1). Both xlpA1-1 and xlpA1-2 are expressed in oocytes and the nervous system. Overexpression of either gene in oocytes potentiated LPA-induced oscillatory chloride ion currents through a pertussis toxin-insensitive pathway. Injection of antisense oligonucleotides designed to inhibit xlpA1-1 and xlpA1-2 expression in oocytes eliminated their endogenous response to LPA. Furthermore, retrovirus-mediated heterologous expression of xlp A1-1 or xlpA1-2 in B103 rat neuroblastoma cells that are unresponsive to LPA conferred LPA-induced cell rounding and adenylyl cyclase inhibition. These results indicate that XLPA1-1 and XLP A1-2 are functional Xenopus LPA receptors and demonstrate the evolutionary conservation of LPA signaling over a range of vertebrate phylogeny.
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