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Regulatory and energetic role of sodium in amino acid uptake by fertilized sea urchin paracentrotus lividus eggs


, : Regulatory and energetic role of sodium in amino acid uptake by fertilized sea urchin paracentrotus lividus eggs. Developmental Biology 118(1): 19-27

Relationships between the Na+ dependent amino acid uptake displayed by fertilized sea urchin eggs and the electrochemical gradient of Na+ was investigated. The time course of Na+ content and valine or alanine uptake was simultaneously monitored in Na+ loaded eggs [by fertilization in K+-free artificial sea water (OK-ASW), or by using monensin, antimycin, cyanide, or ciguatoxin]. Our results demonstrate that the uphill amino acid uptake follows the "Na+ gradient hypothesis." Subsequent fertilization of eggs Na+ depleted by ammonia for 40 min stimulates to a great extent the development of ammonia acid uptake as compared with control eggs. By using simultaneous change of external and intracellular Na+ concentration, we studied the specific role of this ion. An increase in internal Na+ inhibits the uptake through trans inhibitory action while an increase in external Na+ stimulates the efficiency of the uptake system. In egg fertilized since 30 min, hyperpolarization obtained in K+-free ASW stimulates amino acid uptake while depolarization (transfer from K+ free ASW to ASW) inhibits it. This potential-dependent effect developed after fertilization with a time course similar to that on the establishment of K+ conductance described by R.A. Steinhardt, L. Lundin, and D. Mazia (1971, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 68, 2426-2430). In conclusion, our results point out that slight modulations in the activity of the Na+ pump can widely affect the amino acid uptake, suggesting that activation of Na+/K+ ATPase has a key role in the stimulation of amino acid transport.

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