Intracellular compartmentation of Na+, K+ and Cl- in the Ehrlich ascites tumor cell: Correlation with the membrane potential

Thomas C. Smith, Ramona Adams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

The intracellular distribution of Na+, K+, Cl- and water has been studied in the Ehrlich ascites tumor cell. Comparison of the ion and water contents of whole cells with those of cells exposed to La3+ and mechanical stress indicated that La3+ treatment results in selective damage to the cell membrane and permits evaluation of cytoplasmic and nuclear ion concentrations. The results show that Na+ is sequestered within the nucleus, while K+ and Cl- are more highly concentrated in the cell cytoplasm. Reduction of the [Na+] of the incubation medium by replacement with K+ results in reduced cytoplasmic [Na+], increased [Cl-] and no change in [K+]. Nuclear concentrations of these ions are virtually insensitive to the cation composition of the medium. Concomitant measurements of the membrane potential were made. The potential in control cells was -13.7 mV. Reduction of [Na+] in the medium caused significant depolarization. The measured potential is describable by the Cl- equilibrium potential and can be accounted for in terms of cation distributions and permeabilities. The energetic implications of the intracellular compartmentation of ions are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-74
Number of pages18
JournalThe Journal of Membrane Biology
Volume35
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1977
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Physiology
  • Cell Biology

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