The existence of chloride/bicarbonate exchange across the basolateral membrane and its physiologic significance were examined in rabbit proximal tubules. S2 segments of the proximal straight tubule were perfused in vitro and changes in intracellular pH (pHi) and chloride activity (aCli) were monitored by double-barreled microelectrodes. Total peritubular chloride replacement with gluconate increased pHi by 0.8, and this change was inhibited by a pretreatment with an anion transport inhibitor, SITS. Peritubular bicarbonate reduction increased aCli, and most of this increase was lost when ambient sodium was totally removed. The reduction rates of pHi induced by a peritubular bicarbonate reduction or sodium removal were attenuated by 20% by withdrawal of ambient chloride. SITS application to the bath in the control condition quickly increased pHi, but did not change aCli. However, the aCli slightly decreased in response to SITS when the basolateral bicarbonate efflux was increased by reducing peritubular bicarbonate concentration. It is concluded that sodium coupled chloride/bicarbonate exchange is present in parallel with sodium-bicarbonate cotransport in the basolateral membrane of the rabbit proximal tubule, and it contributes to the basolateral bicarbonate and chloride transport.
S Sasaki, N Yoshiyama