Relative CO?/NH? permeabilities of human RhAG, RhBG and RhCG.
ABSTRACT: Mammalian glycosylated rhesus (Rh) proteins include the erythroid RhAG and the nonerythroid RhBG and RhCG. RhBG and RhCG are expressed in multiple tissues, including hepatocytes and the collecting duct (CD) of the kidney. Here, we expressed human RhAG, RhBG and RhCG in Xenopus oocytes (vs. H2O-injected control oocytes) and used microelectrodes to monitor the maximum transient change in surface pH (DpHS) caused by exposing the same oocyte to 5 % CO?/33 mM HCO?? (an increase) or 0.5 mM NH?/NH?? (a decrease). Subtracting the respective values for day-matched, H?O-injected control oocytes yielded channel-specific values (*). (?pH*(S))(CO?) and (-?pH*(S))(NH?) were each significantly >0 for all channels, indicating that RhBG and RhCG--like RhAG--can carry CO? and NH?. We also investigated the role of a conserved aspartate residue, which was reported to inhibit NH? transport. However, surface biotinylation experiments indicate the mutants RhBG(D178N) and RhCG(D177N) have at most a very low abundance in the oocyte plasma membrane. We demonstrate for the first time that RhBG and RhCG--like RhAG--have significant CO? permeability, and we confirm that RhAG, RhBG and RhCG all have significant NH? permeability. However, as evidenced by (?pH*(S))(CO?)/ (-?pH*(S))(NH?) values, we could not distinguish among the CO?/ NH? permeability ratios for RhAG, RhBG and RhCG. Finally, we propose a mechanism whereby RhBG and RhCG contribute to acid secretion in the CD by enhancing the transport of not only NH? but also CO? across the membranes of CD cells.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Rh glycoproteins (RhAG, RhBG, RhCG) are members of the Amt/Mep/Rh family which facilitate movement of ammonium across plasma membranes. Changes in ammonium transport activity following expression of Rh glycoproteins have been described in different heterologous systems such as yeasts, oocytes and eukaryotic cell lines. However, in these complex systems, a potential contribution of endogenous proteins to this function cannot be excluded. To demonstrate that Rh glycoproteins by themselves transport NH(3), human RhCG was purified to homogeneity and reconstituted into liposomes, giving new insights into its channel functional properties. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: An HA-tag introduced in the second extracellular loop of RhCG was used to purify to homogeneity the HA-tagged RhCG glycoprotein from detergent-solubilized recombinant HEK293E cells. Electron microscopy analysis of negatively stained purified RhCG-HA revealed, after image processing, homogeneous particles of 9 nm diameter with a trimeric protein structure. Reconstitution was performed with sphingomyelin, phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidic acid lipids in the presence of the C(12)E(8) detergent which was subsequently removed by Biobeads. Control of protein incorporation was carried out by freeze-fracture electron microscopy. Particle density in liposomes was a function of the Lipid/Protein ratio. When compared to empty liposomes, ammonium permeability was increased two and three fold in RhCG-proteoliposomes, depending on the Lipid/Protein ratio (1/300 and 1/150, respectively). This strong NH(3) transport was reversibly inhibited by mercuric and copper salts and exhibited a low Arrhenius activation energy. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study allowed the determination of ammonia permeability per RhCG monomer, showing that the apparent Punit(NH3) (around 1x10(-3) microm(3)xs(-1)) is close to the permeability measured in HEK293E cells expressing a recombinant human RhCG (1.60x10(-3) microm(3)xs(-1)), and in human red blood cells endogenously expressing RhAG (2.18x10(-3) microm(3)xs(-1)). The major finding of this study is that RhCG protein is active as an NH(3) channel and that this function does not require any protein partner.
Project description:The mammalian Rh (Rhesus) protein family belongs to the Amt/Mep (ammonia transporter/methylammonium permease)/Rh superfamily of ammonium transporters. Whereas RhCE, RhD and RhAG are erythroid specific, RhBG and RhCG are expressed in key organs associated with ammonium transport and metabolism. We have investigated the ammonium transport function of human RhBG and RhCG by comparing intracellular pH variation in wild-type and transfected HEK-293 (human embryonic kidney) cells and MDCK (Madin-Darby canine kidney) cells in the presence of ammonium (NH4+/NH3) gradients. Stopped-flow spectrofluorimetry analysis, using BCECF [2',7'-bis-(2-carboxyethyl)-5(6)-carboxyfluorescein] as a pH-sensitive probe, revealed that all cells submitted to inwardly or outwardly directed ammonium gradients exhibited rapid alkalinization or acidification phases respectively, which account for ammonium movements in transfected and native cells. However, as compared with wild-type cells known to have high NH3 lipid permeability, RhBG- and RhCG-expressing cells exhibited ammonium transport characterized by: (i) a five to six times greater kinetic rate-constant; (ii) a weak temperature-dependence; and (iii) reversible inhibition by mercuric chloride (IC50: 52 microM). Similarly, when subjected to a methylammonium gradient, RhBG- and RhCG-expressing cells exhibited kinetic rate constants greater than those of native cells. However, these constants were five times higher for RhBG as compared with RhCG, suggesting a difference in substrate accessibility. These results, indicating that RhBG and RhCG facilitate rapid and low-energy-dependent bi-directional ammonium movement across the plasma membrane, favour the hypothesis that these Rh glycoproteins, together with their erythroid homologue RhAG [Ripoche, Bertrand, Gane, Birkenmeier, Colin and Cartron (2005) Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 101, 17222-17227] constitute a family of NH3 channels in mammalian cells.
Project description:Four patients with overhydrated cation leak stomatocytosis (OHSt) exhibited the heterozygous RhAG missense mutation F65S. OHSt erythrocytes were osmotically fragile, with elevated Na and decreased K contents and increased cation channel-like activity. Xenopus oocytes expressing wild-type RhAG and RhAG F65S exhibited increased ouabain and bumetanide-resistant uptake of Li(+) and (86)Rb(+), with secondarily increased (86)Rb(+) influx sensitive to ouabain and to bumetanide. Increased RhAG-associated (14)C-methylammonium (MA) influx was severely reduced in RhAG F65S-expressing oocytes. RhAG-associated influxes of Li(+), (86)Rb(+), and (14)C-MA were pharmacologically distinct, and Li(+) uptakes associated with RhAG and RhAG F65S were differentially inhibited by NH(4)(+) and Gd(3+). RhAG-expressing oocytes were acidified and depolarized by 5 mM bath NH(3)/NH(4)(+), but alkalinized and depolarized by subsequent bath exposure to 5 mM methylammonium chloride (MA/MA(+)). RhAG F65S-expressing oocytes exhibited near-wild-type responses to NH(4)Cl, but MA/MA(+) elicited attenuated alkalinization and strong hyperpolarization. Expression of RhAG or RhAG F65S increased steady-state cation currents unaltered by bath Li(+) substitution or bath addition of 5 mM NH(4)Cl or MA/MA(+). These oocyte studies suggest that 1) RhAG expression increases oocyte transport of NH(3)/NH(4)(+) and MA/MA(+); 2) RhAG F65S exhibits gain-of-function phenotypes of increased cation conductance/permeability, and loss-of-function phenotypes of decreased and modified MA/MA(+) transport, and decreased NH(3)/NH(4)(+)-associated depolarization; and 3) RhAG transports NH(3)/NH(4)(+) and MA/MA(+) by distinct mechanisms, and/or the substrates elicit distinct cellular responses. Thus, RhAG F65S is a loss-of-function mutation for amine transport. The altered oocyte intracellular pH, membrane potential, and currents associated with RhAG or RhAG F65S expression may reflect distinct transport mechanisms.
Project description:African lungfishes are ammonotelic in water. They can aestivate for long periods on land during drought. During aestivation, the gills are covered with dried mucus and ammonia excretion ceases. In fishes, ammonia excretion through the gills involves Rhesus glycoproteins (RhGP/Rhgp). This study aimed to obtain the complete cDNA coding sequences of rhgp from the gills of Protopterus annectens, and to determine their branchial mRNA and protein expression levels during the induction, maintenance and arousal phases of aestivation. Three isoforms of rhgp (rhag, rhbg and rhcg) were obtained in the gills of P. annectens. Their complete cDNA coding sequences ranged between 1311 and 1398 bp, coding for 436 to 465 amino acids with estimated molecular masses between 46.8 and 50.9 kDa. Dendrogramic analyses indicated that Rhag was grouped closer to fishes, while Rhbg and Rhcg were grouped closer to tetrapods. During the induction phase, the protein abundance of Rhag, but not its transcript level, was down-regulated in the gills, suggesting that there could be a decrease in the release of ammonia from the erythrocytes to the plasma. Furthermore, the branchial transcript levels of rhbg and rhcg decreased significantly, in preparation for the subsequent shutdown of gill functions. During the maintenance phase, the branchial expression levels of rhag/Rhag, rhbg/Rhbg and rhcg/Rhcg decreased significantly, indicating that their transcription and translation were down-regulated. This could be part of an overall mechanism to shut down branchial functions and save metabolic energy used for transcription and translation. It could also be regarded as an adaptive response to stop ammonia excretion. During the arousal phase, it is essential for the lungfish to regain the ability to excrete ammonia. Indeed, the protein abundance of Rhag, Rhbg and Rhcg recovered to the corresponding control levels after 1 day or 3 days of recovery from 6 months of aestivation.
Project description:The water channel aquaporin 1 (AQP1) and certain Rh-family members are permeable to CO(2) and NH(3). Here, we use changes in surface pH (pH(S)) to assess relative CO(2) vs. NH(3) permeability of Xenopus oocytes expressing members of the AQP or Rh family. Exposed to CO(2) or NH(3), AQP1 oocytes exhibit a greater maximal magnitude of pH(S) change (DeltapH(S)) compared with day-matched controls injected with H(2)O or with RNA encoding SGLT1, NKCC2, or PepT1. With CO(2), AQP1 oocytes also have faster time constants for pH(S) relaxation (tau(pHs)). Thus, AQP1, but not the other proteins, conduct CO(2) and NH(3). Oocytes expressing rat AQP4, rat AQP5, human RhAG, or the bacterial Rh homolog AmtB also exhibit greater DeltapH(S)(CO(2)) and faster tau(pHs) compared with controls. Oocytes expressing AmtB and RhAG, but not AQP4 or AQP5, exhibit greater DeltapH(S)(NH(3)) values. Only AQPs exhibited significant osmotic water permeability (P(f)). We computed channel-dependent (*) DeltapH(S) or P(f) by subtracting values for H(2)O oocytes from those of channel-expressing oocytes. For the ratio DeltapH(S)(CO(2))*/P(f)*, the sequence was AQP5 > AQP1 congruent with AQP4. For DeltapH(S)(CO(2))*/DeltapH(S)(NH(3))*, the sequence was AQP4 congruent with AQP5 > AQP1 > AmtB > RhAG. Thus, each channel exhibits a characteristic ratio for indices of CO(2) vs. NH(3) permeability, demonstrating that, like ion channels, gas channels can exhibit selectivity.
Project description:The mammalian Rh glycoproteins belong to the solute transporter family SLC42 and include RhAG, present in red blood cells, and two non-erythroid members RhBG and RhCG that are expressed in various tissues, including kidney, liver, skin and the GI tract. The Rh proteins in the red blood cell form an "Rh complex" made up of one D-subunit, one CE-subunit and two RhAG subunits. The Rh complex has a well-known antigenic effect but also contributes to the stability of the red cell membrane. RhBG and RhCG are related to the NH4(+) transporters of the yeast and bacteria but their exact function is yet to be determined. This review describes the expression and molecular properties of these membrane proteins and their potential role as NH3/NH4(+) and CO2 transporters. The likelihood that these proteins transport gases such as CO2 or NH3 is novel and significant. The review also describes the physiological importance of these proteins and their relevance to human disease.
Project description:In humans, NH(3) transport across cell membranes is facilitated by the Rh (rhesus) family of proteins. Human Rh C glycoprotein (RhCG) forms a trimeric complex that plays an essential role in ammonia excretion and renal pH regulation. The X-ray crystallographic structure of human RhCG, determined at 2.1 A resolution, reveals the mechanism of ammonia transport. Each monomer contains 12 transmembrane helices, one more than in the bacterial homologs. Reconstituted into proteoliposomes, RhCG conducts NH(3) to raise internal pH. Models of the erythrocyte Rh complex based on our RhCG structure suggest that the erythrocytic Rh complex is composed of stochastically assembled heterotrimers of RhAG, RhD, and RhCE.
Project description:Ammonia secretion by the collecting duct (CD) is critical for acid-base homeostasis and, when defective, causes distal renal tubular acidosis (dRTA). The Rhesus protein RhCG mediates NH(3) transport as evident from cell-free and cellular models as well as from Rhcg-null mice. Here, we investigated in a Rhcg mouse model the metabolic effects of Rhcg haploinsufficiency, the role of Rhcg in basolateral NH(3) transport, and the mechanisms of adaptation to the lack of Rhcg. Both Rhcg(+/+) and Rhcg(+/-) mice were able to handle an acute acid load, whereas Rhcg(-/-) mice developed severe metabolic acidosis with reduced ammonuria and high mortality. However, chronic acid loading revealed that Rhcg(+/-) mice did not fully recover, showing lower blood HCO(3)(-) concentration and more alkaline urine. Microperfusion studies demonstrated that transepithelial NH(3) permeability was reduced by 80 and 40%, respectively, in CDs from Rhcg(-/-) and Rhcg(+/-) mice compared with controls. Basolateral membrane permeability to NH(3) was reduced in CDs from Rhcg(-/-) mice consistent with basolateral Rhcg localization. Rhcg(-/-) responded to acid loading with normal expression of enzymes and transporters involved in proximal tubular ammoniagenesis but reduced abundance of the NKCC2 transporter responsible for medullary accumulation of ammonium. Consequently, tissue ammonium content was decreased. These data demonstrate a role for apical and basolateral Rhcg in transepithelial NH(3) transport and uncover an incomplete dRTA phenotype in Rhcg(+/-) mice. Haploinsufficiency or reduced expression of RhCG may underlie human forms of (in)complete dRTA.
Project description:PURPOSE: To conduct a prospective randomized study in order to investigate the effect of recombinant HCG (rHCG) on oocyte nuclear and cytoplasm maturity compared to urinary HCG (uHCG), for inducing ovulation in women treated with ICSI for male factor infertility. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We compared 89 patients randomly assigned to one of the two study groups. Group A consisted of 42 women who received a subcutaneous (s.c.) injection of 250 microg rHCG and group B consisted of 47 patients receiving an intramuscular (i.m.) injection of 10,000 IU uHCG. RESULTS: Patients treated with rHCG showed a rate of metaphase II oocytes, a number of metaphase II oocytes with mature cytoplasm and a rate of metaphase II oocytes with mature cytoplasm calculated from total MII oocytes statistically higher than in patients treated with uHCG. However this differences were not associated with a significantly better clinical outcome. CONCLUSION: Our data show that in women treated with ICSI for male factor infertility, rHCG increases the rate of metaphase II oocytes, the number and the rate of MII oocytes with mature cytoplasm compared to uHCG. A larger study comparing transfer cycles of embryos all derived from oocytes with mature cytoplasm and transfer cycles of embryos all derived from oocytes with immature cytoplasm may be needed to clarify clinical correlations.
Project description:Renal Rhbg is localized to the basolateral membrane of intercalated cells and is involved in NH3/NH4+ transport. The structure of Rhbg is not yet resolved; however, a high-resolution crystal structure of AmtB, a bacterial homolog of Rh, has been determined. We aligned the sequence of Rhbg to that of AmtB and identified important sites of Rhbg that may affect transport. Our analysis positioned three conserved amino acids, histidine 183 (H183), histidine 342 (H342), and tryptophan 230 (W230), within the hydrophobic pore where they presumably serve to control NH3 transport. A fourth residue, phenylalanine 128 (F128) was positioned at the upper vestibule, presumably contributing to recruitment of NH4+ We generated three mutations each of H183, H342, W230, and F128 and expressed them in frog oocytes. Immunolabeling showed that W230 and F128 mutants were localized to the cell membrane, whereas H183 and H342 staining was diffuse and mostly intracellular. To determine function, we compared measurements of NH3/NH4+ and methyl amine (MA)/methyl ammonium (MA+)-induced currents, intracellular pH, and surface pH (pHs) among oocytes expressing the mutants, Rhbg, or injected with H2O. In H183 and W230 mutants, NH4+-induced current and intracellular acidification were inhibited compared with that of Rhbg, and MA-induced intracellular alkalinization was completely absent. Expression of H183A or W230A mutants inhibited NH3/NH4+- and MA/MA+-induced decrease in pHs to the level observed in H2O-injected oocytes. Mutations of F128 did not significantly affect transport of NH3 or NH4+ These data demonstrated that mutating H183 or W230 caused loss of function but not F128. H183 and H342 may affect membrane expression of the transporter.