Atrial natriuretic factor stimulates Na/K/Cl cotransport in vascular smooth muscle cells

Martha E O'Donnell, N. E. Owen

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43 Scopus citations


Atrial natriuretic factor (ANF) is a collective term used to describe a group of peptides isolated from mammalian atria which have vasorelaxant activity as well as diuretic and natriuretic activity. Recently, ANF peptides have been shown to bind to specific receptors on vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) and to cause an elevation in cGMP levels. We have previously demonstrated that VSMC possess a prominent, cyclic-nucleotide-sensitive Na/K/Cl cotransport system. In the present study, the effects of the ANF peptide rat atriopeptin III (rAP III) were measured on Na/K/Cl cotransport of VSMC by using primary cultures derived from rat thoracic aorta. It was found that rAP III caused a marked elevation of Na/K/Cl cotransport. Maximal stimulation occurred at 100 nM, and the dose of rAP III required for half-maximal potassium influx (K( 1/2 )) was 9 nM. We also investigated the effect of rAP III on cGMP levels in VSMC. It was found that rAP III increased cGMP in a dose-dependent manner, with a K( 1/2 ) value of 10 nM. Finally, we measured the effect of the permeable cGMP analog 8-bromo-cGMP on Na/K/Cl cotransport. It was found that 8-bromo-cGMP stimulated cotransport to the same extent as did a saturating dose rAP III (K( 1/2 ) = 0.2 μM). Saturating doses of rAP III and 8-Br-cGMP in combination did not stimulate cotransport in an additive manner, suggesting that rAP III probably does not elevate cGMP via inhibition of phosphodiesterase. These findings suggest that activation of Na/K/Cl cotransport via elevations in cGMP may be associated with ANF-mediated vasorelaxation and/or ANF-mediated diuresis and natriuresis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6132-6136
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number16
StatePublished - 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General
  • Genetics


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