Pflügers Archiv : European journal of physiology. vol:426 issue:5 pages:387-95
This paper describes a Ca(2+)-blockable, poorly selective cation pathway in the apical membrane of A6 epithelia. This pathway has properties that resemble the cation-selective channels in the toad urinary bladder and frog skin. Transepithelial short circuit currents (Isc) and power density spectra (PDS) of the fluctuations in current were recorded. The basolateral surface of the tissues was exposed to Cl- or SO4(2-) solutions with Na+ as the major cation. Ca(2+)-blockable inward oriented currents and Lorentzian noise were recorded with isotonic (215 mosmol/kg) mucosal Cl- and hypotonic (144 mos-mol/kg serosal SO4(2-) solution with Na+, K+, Rb+ or Cs+ as the major mucosal cation. Experiments with mucosal K+ demonstrated that the cation-selective channel was markedly activated by serosal hypotonicity. Effects of an increased electrical driving force were excluded on the basis of the results obtained with microelectrode experiments and transepithelial voltage clamping. Cell volume expansion induced by isotonic replacements of serosal sucrose by glycerol or urea also activated the cation-selective pathway. Furthermore, the presence of Cl- in the mucosal solution was a prerequisite for a sustained response to hypotonicity or replacements of the organic compounds. Moreover, we found that the cation-selective channels are mainly expressed in the cells during the early period of epithelial growth.