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J Biol Chem. 1991 Nov 15;266(32):21640-8.

The Na(+)-independent Ca2+ efflux mechanism of liver mitochondria is not a passive Ca2+/2H+ exchanger.

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Department of Biophysics, School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Rochester, New York 14642.


Whether the Na(2+)-independent Ca2+ efflux mechanism of liver mitochondria is a Ca2+/2H+ exchanger and whether this exchanger is a passive mechanism have been controversial since shortly after the discovery of this mechanism. Here, a new approach to determining if the mechanism is passive is developed based on the energy available to a passive Ca2+/2H+ exchanger. Conditions are identified in which the Na(+)-independent Ca2+ efflux mechanism transports Ca2+ out of mitochondria against a Ca2+ gradient many times greater than that possible for a passive Ca2+/2H+ exchanger, thus ruling this out as a possible mechanism.

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