Sodium-coupled bicarbonate transporters are critical for renal electrolyte transport. The electrogenic, sodium-coupled bicarbonate cotransporter, isoform 1 (NBCe1), encoded by the SLC4A4 geneencoded by the SLC4A4 gene has five multiple splice variants; the A splice variant, NBCe1-A, is the primary basolateral bicarbonate transporter in the proximal convoluted tubule. This study’s purpose was to determine if there is expression of additional NBCe1 splice variants in the mouse kidney, their cellular distribution, and their regulation by metabolic acidosis. In wild-type mice, an antibody reactive only to NBCe1-A showed basolateral immunolabel only in cortical proximal tubule (PT) segments, whereas an antibody reactive to all NBCe1 splice variants (pan-NBCe1) showed basolateral immunolabel in PT segments in both the cortex and outer medulla. In mice with NBCe1-A deletion, the pan-NBCe1 antibody showed basolateral PT immunolabel in both the renal cortex and outer stripe of the outer medulla, and immunoblot analysis showed expression of a ~121-kDa protein. RT-PCR of mRNA from NBCe1-A knockout mice directed at splice variant-specific regions showed expression of only NBCe1-B mRNA. In wild-type kidney, RT-PCR confirmed expression of mRNA for the NBCe1-B splice variant and absence of mRNA for the C, D, and E splice variants. Finally, exogenous acid loading increased expression in the proximal straight tubule in the outer stripe of the outer medulla. These studies demonstrate that the NBCe1-B splice variant is present in the PT, and its expression increases in response to exogenous acid loading, suggesting it participates in the PT contribution to acid-base homeostasis.
- Proximal tubule
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