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alpha 1- and beta 2-adrenergic receptor expression in the Madin-Darby canine kidney epithelial cell line.


The Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cell line, derived from distal tubule/collecting duct, expresses differentiated properties of renal tubule epithelium in culture. We studied the expression of adrenergic receptors in MDCK to examine the role of catecholamines in the regulation of renal function. Radioligand-binding studies demonstrated, on the basis of receptor affinities of subtype-selective adrenergic agonists and antagonists, that MDCK cells have both alpha 1- and beta 2-adrenergic receptors. To determine whether these receptor types were expressed by the same cell, we developed a number of clonal MDCK cell lines. The clonal lines had stable but unique morphologies reflecting heterogeneity in the parent cell line. Some clones expressed only beta 2-adrenergic receptors and were nonmotile, whereas others expressed both alpha 1- and beta 2-receptors and demonstrated motility on the culture substrate at low cell densities. In one clone, alpha- and beta-receptor expression was stable for more than 50 passages. Catecholamine agonists increased phosphatidylinositol turnover by activating alpha-adrenergic receptors and cellular cyclic adenosine monophosphate accumulation by activating beta-adrenergic receptors. Guanine nucleotide decreased the affinity of isoproterenol for the beta 2-receptor but did not alter the affinity of epinephrine for the alpha 1-receptor. These results show that alpha 1- and beta 2-receptors can be expressed by a single renal tubular cell and that the two receptors behave as distinct entities in terms of cellular response and receptor regulation. Heterogeneity of adrenergic receptor expression in MDCK clones may reflect properties of different types of renal tubule cells.

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