Article

Physiology and pathophysiology of Na+/H+ exchange and Na+-K+-2Cl(-) cotransport in the heart, brain, and blood

Department of Physiology and Membrane Biology, University of California, Davis, Davis, California, United States
AJP Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology (Impact Factor: 3.53). 08/2006; 291(1):R1-25. DOI: 10.1152/ajpregu.00782.2005
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Maintenance of a stable cell volume and intracellular pH is critical for normal cell function. Arguably, two of the most important ion transporters involved in these processes are the Na+/H+ exchanger isoform 1 (NHE1) and Na+ -K+ -2Cl- cotransporter isoform 1 (NKCC1). Both NHE1 and NKCC1 are stimulated by cell shrinkage and by numerous other stimuli, including a wide range of hormones and growth factors, and for NHE1, intracellular acidification. Both transporters can be important regulators of cell volume, yet their activity also, directly or indirectly, affects the intracellular concentrations of Na+, Ca2+, Cl-, K+, and H+. Conversely, when either transporter responds to a stimulus other than cell shrinkage and when the driving force is directed to promote Na+ entry, one consequence may be cell swelling. Thus stimulation of NHE1 and/or NKCC1 by a deviation from homeostasis of a given parameter may regulate that parameter at the expense of compromising others, a coupling that may contribute to irreversible cell damage in a number of pathophysiological conditions. This review addresses the roles of NHE1 and NKCC1 in the cellular responses to physiological and pathophysiological stress. The aim is to provide a comprehensive overview of the mechanisms and consequences of stress-induced stimulation of these transporters with focus on the heart, brain, and blood. The physiological stressors reviewed are metabolic/exercise stress, osmotic stress, and mechanical stress, conditions in which NHE1 and NKCC1 play important physiological roles. With respect to pathophysiology, the focus is on ischemia and severe hypoxia where the roles of NHE1 and NKCC1 have been widely studied yet remain controversial and incompletely elucidated.

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