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Am J Physiol. 1997 Dec;273(6 Pt 2):F1058-65.

Na(+)-dependent purine nucleoside transporter from human kidney: cloning and functional characterization.

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  • 1Department of Biopharmaceutical Sciences, University of California, San Francisco 94143, USA.


Many purine nucleosides and their analogs are actively transported in the kidney. Using homology cloning strategies and reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reactions, we isolated a cDNA encoding a Na(+)-dependent nucleoside transporter, hSPNT1, from human kidney. Functional expression in Xenopus laevis oocytes identified hSPNT1 as a Na(+)-dependent nucleoside transporter that selectively transports purine nucleosides but also transports uridine. The Michaelis constant (K(m)) of uridine (80 microM) in interacting with hSPNT1 was substantially higher than that of inosine (4.5 microM). hSPNT1 (658 amino acids) is 81% identical to the previously cloned rat Na(+)-nucleoside transporter, SPNT, but differs markedly from SPNT in terms of its primary structure in the NH2 terminus. In addition, an Alu repetitive element (approximately 282 bp) is present in the 3'-untranslated region of the hSPNT1 cDNA. Northern analysis revealed that multiple transcripts of hSPNT1 are widely distributed in human tissues including human kidney. In contrast, rat SPNT transcripts are absent in kidney and highly localized to liver and intestine. The hSPNT1 gene was localized to chromosome 15. This is the first demonstration of a purine nucleoside transporter in human kidney.

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