The present studies define the physiologic role of endogenous adenosine in the perfused shark rectal gland, a model epithelia for hormone-stimulated chloride transport. Chloride ion secretion, and venous adenosine and inosine concentrations increased in parallel in response to hormone stimulation. From a basal rate of 157 +/- 26 mu eq/h per g, chloride secretion increased to 836 +/- 96 and 2170 +/- 358 with 1 and 10 microM forskolin, venous adenosine increased from 5.0 +/- 1 to 126 +/- 29 and 896 +/- 181 nM, and inosine increased from 30 +/- 9 to 349 +/- 77 and 1719 +/- 454 nM (all P less than 0.01). Nitrobenzylthioinosine (NBTI), a nucleoside transport inhibitor, completely blocked the release of adenosine and inosine. Inhibition of chloride transport with bumetanide, an inhibitor of the Na+/K+/2Cl- cotransporter, or ouabain, an inhibitor of Na+/K+ ATPase activity, reduced venous adenosine and inosine to basal values. When the interaction of endogenous adenosine with extracellular receptors was prevented by adenosine deaminase, NBTI, or 8-phenyltheophylline, the chloride transport response to secretagogues increased by 1.7-2.3-fold. These studies demonstrate that endogenous adenosine is released in response to hormone-stimulated cellular work and acts at A1 adenosine receptors as a feedback inhibitor of chloride transport.
G G Kelley, O S Aassar, J N Forrest Jr