Hyperosmolarity inhibits the Na+/H+ exchanger isoforms NHE2 and NHE3: An effect opposite to that on NHE1

Samir K. Nath, Cynthia Yue Hang, Susan A. Levine, C. H.Chris Yun, Marshall H. Montrose, Mark Donowitz, Chung Ming Tse

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73 Scopus citations


The effect of hyperosmolarity on cloned Na+/H+ exchanger (NHE) isoforms NHE2 and NHE3 was studied in stably transfected PS120 fibroblasts. Na+/H+ exchanger activity was determined spectrofluorometrically in acidified cells that were exposed to isosmolar (300 mosmol/kg) or hyperosmolar (450 mosmol/kg) media, in which the only difference is the presence or absence of 150 mM mannitol. Hyperosmolar solution reversibly inhibited NHE2 and NHE3 with a delay of ~15 s. Hyperosmolarity significantly reduced their maximal reaction velocity compared with isosmolar medium but did not alter their Michaelis-Menten constant for intracellular H+. The Michaelis-Menten constant of the exchangers for extracellular Na+ in hyperosmolar medium was not different from that in isosmolar medium. Pretreatment of PS120/NHE3 cells with the protein kinase C inhibitor 1-(5-isoquinolinylsulfonyl)-2- methylpiperazine, the tyrosine kinase inhibitor genistein, and the serine/threonine protein phosphatase inhibitor okadaic acid did not affect the hyperosmolar inhibition of NHE3. Hyperosmolar inhibition of Na+/H+ exchanger activity was also observed in PS120 cells transfected with truncated NHE3 cDNAs (E3/585, E3/543, E3/509, and E3/475) and NHE2 cDNA (E2/499). We conclude that 1) hyperosmolarity inhibits NHE2 and NHE3, in contrast to the stimulatory effect on the housekeeping isoform NHE1, 2) this inhibition is reversible, and 3) the COOH termini of NHE2 and NHE3 are not necessary for hyperosmolar inhibition of NHE2 and NHE3.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)G431-G441
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Issue number3 33-3
StatePublished - 1996


  • fibroblasts
  • regulatory volume increase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Physiology (medical)


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