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Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2010 Jul;299(1):F28-34. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00140.2010. Epub 2010 Apr 28.

Effect of chronic alcohol feeding on physiological and molecular parameters of renal thiamin transport.


The renal thiamin reabsorption process plays an important role in regulating thiamin body homeostasis and involves both thiamin transporters-1 and -2 (THTR1 and THTR2). Chronic alcohol use is associated with thiamin deficiency. Although a variety of factors contribute to the development of this deficiency, effects of chronic alcohol use on renal thiamin transport have not been thoroughly examined. We addressed this issue by examining the effect of chronic alcohol feeding of rats with liquid diet on physiological and molecular parameters of renal thiamin transport. Chronic alcohol feeding caused a significant inhibition in carrier-mediated thiamin transport across the renal brush-border membrane and was evident as early as 2 wk after initiation of alcohol feeding. Similarly, thiamin transport across the renal basolateral membrane was significantly inhibited by chronic alcohol feeding. The inhibition in renal thiamin transport was associated with a marked decrease in the level of expression of THTR1 and -2 proteins, mRNAs, and heterogeneous nuclear RNAs. Chronic alcohol feeding also caused a significant reduction in the level of expression of thiamin pyrophosphokinase but not that of the mitochondrial thiamin pyrophosphate transporter. These studies show that chronic alcohol feeding inhibits the entry and exit of thiamin in the polarized renal epithelial cells and that the effect is, at least in part, mediated at the transcriptional level. These findings also suggest that chronic alcohol feeding interferes with the normal homeostasis of thiamin in renal epithelial cells.

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