Unexpected roles of the Na-K-ATPase and other ion transporters in cell junctions and tubulogenesis

Thomas Krupinski*, Greg J. Beitel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recent work shows that transport-independent as well as transport-dependent functions of ion transporters, and in particular the Na-K-ATPase, are required for formation and maintenance of several intercellular junctions. Furthermore, these junctional and other nonjunctional functions of ion transporters contribute to development of epithelial tubes. Here, we consider what has been learned about the roles of ion pumps in formation of junctions and epithelial tubes in mammals, zebrafish, Drosophila, and C. elegans. We propose that asymmetric association of the Na-K-ATPase with cell junctions early in metazoan evolution enabled vectorial transcellular ion transport and control of intraorganismal environment. Ion transport-independent functions of the Na-K-ATPase arose as junctional complexes evolved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)192-201
Number of pages10
JournalPhysiology
Volume24
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology

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