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J Membr Biol. 2008 May;223(2):73-85. doi: 10.1007/s00232-008-9115-7. Epub 2008 Jul 1.

Na+ modulates anion permeation and block of P2X7 receptors from mouse parotid glands.

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  • 1Instituto de Física, Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí, Dr. Manuel Nava #6, San Luis Potosi, SLP 78290, Mexico.


We previously reported that mouse parotid acinar cells display anion conductance (I(ATPCl)) when stimulated by external ATP in Na+-free extracellular solutions. It has been suggested that the P2X7 receptor channel (P2X7R) might underlie I(ATPCl). In this work we show that I (ATPCl) can be activated by ATP, ADP, AMP-PNP, ATPgammaS and CTP. This is consistent with the nucleotide sensitivity of P2X7R. Accordingly, acinar cells isolated from P2X7R( -/- ) mice lacked I(ATPCl). Experiments with P2X7R heterologously expressed resulted in ATP-activated currents (I(ATP-P2X7)) partially carried by anions. In Na(+)-free solutions, I (ATP-P2X7) had an apparent anion permeability sequence of SCN(-) > I(-) congruent with NO3(-) > Br(-) > Cl(-) > acetate, comparable to that reported for I(ATPCl) under the same conditions. However, in the presence of physiologically relevant concentrations of external Na+, the Cl(-) permeability of I(ATP-P2X7) was negligible, although permeation of Br(-) or SCN(-) was clearly resolved. Relative anion permeabilities were not modified by addition of 1 mM: carbenoxolone, a blocker of Pannexin-1. Moreover, cibacron blue 3GA, which blocks the Na(+) current activated by ATP in acinar cells but not I(ATPCl), blocked I(ATP-P2X7) in a dose-dependent manner when Na+ was present but failed to do so in tetraethylammonium containing solutions. Thus, our data indicate that P2X7R is fundamental for I(ATPCl) generation in acinar cells and that external Na+ modulates ion permeability and conductivity, as well as drug affinity, in P2X7R.

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