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Frontiers in physiology

Close Association of Carbonic Anhydrase (CA2a and CA15a), Na(+)/H(+) Exchanger (Nhe3b), and Ammonia Transporter Rhcg1 in Zebrafish Ionocytes Responsible for Na(+) Uptake.


PMID 23565095

Abstract

Freshwater (FW) fishes actively absorb salt from their environment to tolerate low salinities. We previously reported that vacuolar-type H(+)-ATPase/mitochondrion-rich cells (H-MRCs) on the skin epithelium of zebrafish larvae (Danio rerio) are primary sites for Na(+) uptake. In this study, in an attempt to clarify the mechanism for the Na(+) uptake, we performed a systematic analysis of gene expression patterns of zebrafish carbonic anhydrase (CA) isoforms and found that, of 12 CA isoforms, CA2a and CA15a are highly expressed in H-MRCs at larval stages. The ca2a and ca15a mRNA expression were salinity-dependent; they were upregulated in 0.03 mM Na(+) water whereas ca15a but not ca2a was down-regulated in 70 mM Na(+) water. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated cytoplasmic distribution of CA2a and apical membrane localization of CA15a. Furthermore, cell surface immunofluorescence staining revealed external surface localization of CA15a. Depletion of either CA2a or CA15a expression by Morpholino antisense oligonucleotides resulted in a significant decrease in Na(+) accumulation in H-MRCs. An in situ proximity ligation assay demonstrated a very close association of CA2a, CA15a, Na(+)/H(+) exchanger 3b (Nhe3b), and Rhcg1 ammonia transporter in H-MRC. Our findings suggest that CA2a, CA15a, and Rhcg1 play a key role in Na(+)uptake under FW conditions by forming a transport metabolon with Nhe3b.

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