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Nature. 1996 Feb 1;379(6564):458-60.

Cloning and characterization of the thyroid iodide transporter.

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Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York 10461, USA.


Iodide (I-) is an essential constituent of the thyroid hormones T3 and T4, and is accumulated by the thyroid. The transport of iodide, the first step in thyroid hormogenesis, is catalysed by the Na+/I- symporter, an intrinsic membrane protein that is crucial for the evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of thyroid disorders. Although several other important thyroid proteins involved in hormogenesis have been characterized, the Na+/I- symporter has not. Here we report the isolation of a complementary DNA clone that encodes this symporter, as a result of functional screening of a cDNA library from a rat thyroid-derived cell line (FRTL-5) in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Oocyte microinjection of an RNA transcript made in vitro from this cDNA clone elicited a more than 700-fold increase in perchlorate-sensitive Na+/I- symport activity over background. To our knowledge, this is the first iodide-transporting molecule to have its cDNA cloned, providing a missing link in the thyroid hormone biosynthetic pathway.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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