Single-channel analysis of functional epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) stability at the apical membrane of A6 distal kidney cells

Center for Cell and Molecular Signaling, Department of Physiology, Emory University School of Medicine, Whitehead Biomedical Research Bldg. 615 Michael St., Atlanta, GA 30322, USA.
American journal of physiology. Renal physiology (Impact Factor: 3.3). 10/2008; 295(5):F1519-27. DOI: 10.1152/ajprenal.00605.2007
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Epithelial sodium channels (ENaC) play an essential role in maintaining total body fluid and electrolyte homeostasis. As such, abnormal expression of ENaC at the cell surface is linked to several important human diseases. Although the stability of ENaC subunits has been extensively studied by protein biochemical analysis, the half-life of the functional channel in the apical membrane remains controversial. Because the functional stability of the multisubunit channel may be more physiologically relevant than the stability of individual subunit proteins, we performed studies of functional ENaC channels using A6 epithelial cells, a Xenopus laevis distal nephron cell line. We recorded single-channel activity in over 400 cells with the translation blockers cycloheximide (CHX) or puromycin, as well as the intracellular protein trafficking inhibitors brefeldin A (BFA) or nocodazole. Our cell-attached, single-channel recordings allow us to quantify the channel density in the apical membrane, as well as to determine channel open probability (Po) from control (untreated) cells and from cells at different times of drug treatment. The data suggest that the half-life of ENaC channels is approximately 3.5 h following puromycin, BFA, and nocodazole treatment. Furthermore, these three drugs had no significant effect on the Po of ENaC for at least 6 h after exposure. A decrease in apical channel number and Po was observed following 2 h of CHX inhibition of protein synthesis, and the apparent channel half-life was closer to 1.5 h following CHX treatment. Treatment of cells with the translation inhibitors does not alter the expression of the protease furin, and therefore changes in protease activity cannot explain changes in ENaC Po. Confocal images show that BFA and nocodazole both disrupt most of the Golgi apparatus after 1-h exposure. In cells with the Golgi totally disrupted by overnight exposure to BFA, 20% of apical ENaC channels remained functional. This result suggests that ENaC is delivered to the apical membrane via a pathway that might bypass the Golgi vesicular trafficking pathway, or that there might be two pools of channels with markedly different half-lives in the apical membrane.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ion channels play key roles in physiology. They function as protein transducers able to transform stimuli and chemical gradients into electrical signals. They also are critical for cell signaling and play a particularly important role in epithelial transport acting as gateways for the movement of electrolytes across epithelial cell membranes. Experimental limitations, though, have hampered the recording of ion channel activity in many types of tissue. This has slowed progress in understanding the cellular and physiological function of these channels with most function inferred from in vitro systems and cell culture models. In many cases, such inferences have clouded rather than clarified the picture. Here, we describe a contemporary method for isolating and patch-clamping renal tubules for ex vivo analysis of ion channel function in native tissue. Focus is placed on quantifying the activity of the epithelial Na(+) channel (ENaC) in the aldosterone--sensitive distal nephron (ASDN). This isolated, split-open tubule preparation enables recording of renal ion channels in the close-to-native environment under the control of native cell signaling pathways and receptors. When combined with complementary measurements of organ and system function, and contemporary molecular genetics and pharmacology used to manipulate function and regulation, patch-clamping renal channels in the isolated, split-open tubule enables understanding to emerge about the physiological function of these key proteins from the molecule to the whole animal.
    Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.) 01/2013; 998:341-53. DOI:10.1007/978-1-62703-351-0_27 · 1.29 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Nadph oxidase 4 is an important cellular source of reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation in the kidney. Novel anti-oxidant drugs, such as Nox4-inhibitor compounds, are being developed. There is however, very little experimental evidence for the biological role and regulation of Nadph oxidase isoforms in the kidney. Herein, we show that Fulvene-5 is an effective inhibitor of Nox-generated ROS and report the role of Nox isoforms in activating epithelial sodium channels (ENaC) in A6 distal nephron cells via oxidant signaling and cell stretch activation. Using single channel patch clamp analysis, we report that Fulvene-5 blocked the increase in ENaC activity that is typically observed with H2O2 treatment of A6 cells: average ENaC NPo values decreased from a baseline level of 1.04±0.18 (mean±SE) to 0.25±0.08 following Fulvene-5 treatment. H2O2 treatment failed to increase ENaC activity in the presence of Fulvene-5. Moreover, Fulvene-5 treatment of A6 cells blocked the osmotic-cell stretch response of A6 cells; indicating that stretch activation of Nox-derived ROS plays an important role in ENaC regulation. Together, these findings indicate that Fulvene-5, and perhaps other classes of antioxidant inhibitors, may represent a novel class of compounds useful for the treatment of pathological disorders stemming from inappropriate ion channel activity, such as hypertention.
    AJP Renal Physiology 07/2013; 305(7). DOI:10.1152/ajprenal.00098.2013 · 4.42 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cellular mechanisms to account for the low Na(+) concentration in human milk are poorly defined. MCF10A cells, which were derived from human mammary epithelium and grown on permeable supports, exhibit amiloride- and benzamil-sensitive short circuit current (Isc; a sensitive indicator of net ion transport), suggesting activity of the epithelial Na(+) channel, ENaC. When cultured in the presence of cholera toxin (Ctx), MCF10A cells exhibit greater amiloride sensitive Isc at all time points tested (2h to 7d), an effect that is not reduced with Ctx washout for 12 hours. Amiloride sensitive Isc remains elevated by Ctx in the presence of inhibitors for PKA (H-89, Rp-cAMP), PI3K (LY294002) and protein trafficking (brefeldin A). Additionally, the Ctx B subunit, alone, does not replicate these effects. RT-PCR and western blot analyses indicate no significant increase in either the mRNA or protein expression for α, β, or, γ-ENaC subunits. Ctx increases the abundance of both β- and γ-ENaC in the apical membrane. Additionally, Ctx increases both phosphorylated and nonphosphorylated Nedd4-2 expression. These results demonstrate that human mammary epithelia express ENaC, which can account for the low Na(+) concentration in milk. Importantly, the results suggest that Ctx increases the expression, but reduces the activity of the E3 ubiquitin ligase, Nedd4-2, which would tend to reduce the ENaC retrieval and increase steady-state membrane residency. The results reveal a novel mechanism in human mammary gland epithelia by which Ctx regulates ENaC-mediated Na(+) transport, which may have inferences for epithelial ion transport regulation in other tissues throughout the body.
    AJP Cell Physiology 12/2013; 306(5). DOI:10.1152/ajpcell.00181.2013 · 3.67 Impact Factor