BACKGROUND/AIMS: Renal reabsorption of inorganic phosphate (Pi) is mediated by SLC34 and SLC20 Na+/Pi-cotransporters the abundance of which is under hormonal control. Extracellular Pi itself also regulates the expression of cotransporters and the concentration of Pi-regulating hormones, though the signaling pathways are largely unknown. Here, we explored the mechanisms that allow renal proximal cells to adapt to changes in the concentration of Pi.
METHODS: opossum kidney (OK) cells, a model of proximal epithelia, were incubated with different concentrations of Pi in the absence/presence of phosphonoformic acid (PFA), a Pi-analogue and SLC34-inhibitor, and of inhibitors of kinases involved in hormonal control of Pi-homeostasis; cells cultured in normal media were treated with uncouplers of oxidative phosphorylation. Then, the intracellular concentration of ATP and/or the Pi-transport capacity of the cultures were analyzed.
RESULTS: luminal Pi regulates the Pi-transport and the intracellular ATP levels. Changes in ATP seem secondary to alterations in Pi-transport, rather than ATP acting as a signal. Adaptation of Pi-transport to high Pi was not mimicked by PFA. Transport adaptation was blocked by PFA but not by kinase inhibitors.
CONCLUSIONS: in OK cells, adaptation of Pi-transport to luminal Pi does not depend on the same signaling pathways involved in hormonal regulation.