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Neurochem Int. 2000 May;36(6):539-47.

Evidence for a zinc/proton antiporter in rat brain.

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Department of Biological Sciences, Ohio University, Athens 45701, USA.


The data presented in this paper are consistent with the existence of a plasma membrane zinc/proton antiport activity in rat brain. Experiments were performed using purified plasma membrane vesicles isolated from whole rat brain. Incubating vesicles in the presence of various concentrations of 65Zn2+ resulted in a rapid accumulation of 65Zn2+. Hill plot analysis demonstrated a lack of cooperativity in zinc activation of 65Zn2+ uptake. Zinc uptake was inhibited in the presence of 1 mM Ni2+, Cd2+, or CO2+. Calcium (1 mM) was less effective at inhibiting 65Zn2+ uptake and Mg2+ and Mn2+ had no effect. The initial rate of vesicular 65Zn2+ uptake was inhibited by increasing extravesicular H+ concentration. Vesicles preloaded with 65Zn2+ could be induced to release 65Zn2+ by increasing extravesicular H+ or addition of 1 mM nonradioactive Zn2+. Hill plot analysis showed a lack of cooperativity in H+ activation of 65Zn2+ release. Based on the Hill analyses, the stoichiometry of transport may include Zn2+/Zn2+ exchange and Zn2+/H+ antiport, the latter being potentially electrogenic. Zinc/proton antiport may be an important mode of zinc uptake into neurons and contribute to the reuptake of zinc to replenish presynaptic vesicle stores after stimulation.

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