Norepinephrine-Induced Stimulation of Kir4.1/Kir5.1 Is Required for the Activation of NaCl Transporter in Distal Convoluted Tubule

Xin Peng Duan, Li Gu, Yu Xiao, Zhong Xiuzi Gao, Peng Wu, Yun Hong Zhang, Xin Xin Meng, Jun Lin Wang, Dan Dan Zhang, Dao Hong Lin, Wen Hui Wang, Ruimin Gu

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22 Scopus citations


The stimulation of β-adrenergic receptor increases thiazide-sensitive NaCl cotransporter (NCC), an effect contributing to salt-sensitive hypertension by sympathetic stimulation. We now test whether the stimulation of β-adrenergic receptor-induced activation of NCC is achieved through activating basolateral Kir4.1 in the distal convoluted tubule (DCT). Application of norepinephrine increased the basolateral 40 pS K+ channel (Kir4.1/Kir5.1 heterotetramer) in the DCT. The stimulatory effect of norepinephrine on the K+ channel was mimicked by cAMP analogue but abolished by inhibiting PKA (protein kinase A). Also, the effect of norepinephrine on the K+ channel in the DCT was recapitulated by isoproterenol but not by α-adrenergic agonist and blocked by propranolol, suggesting that norepinephrine effect on the K+ channel was mediated by β-adrenergic receptor. The whole-cell recording shows that norepinephrine and isoproterenol increased DCT K+ currents and shifted the K+ current (IK) reversal potential to negative range (hyperpolarization). Continuous norepinephrine perfusion (7 days) increased DCT K+ currents, hyperpolarized K reversal potential, and increased the expression of total NCC/phosphorylated NCC, but it had no significant effect on the expression of NKCC2 (type 2 Na-Cl-K cotransporter) and ENaC-α (epithelial Na channel-α subunit). Renal clearance study demonstrated that norepinephrine perfusion augmented thiazide-induced urinary Na+ excretion only in wild-type but not in kidney-specific Kir4.1 knockout mice, suggesting that Kir4.1 is required for mediating the effect of norepinephrine on NCC. However, norepinephrine perfusion did not affect urinary K+ excretion. We conclude that the stimulation of β-adrenergic receptor activates the basolateral Kir4.1 in the DCT and that the activation of Kir4.1 is required for norepinephrine-induced stimulation of NCC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)112-120
Number of pages9
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • hypertension
  • ion transport
  • isoproterenol
  • norepinephrine
  • propranolol


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