The (Pro)renin receptor: site-specific and functional linkage to the vacuolar H+-ATPase in the kidney

Hypertension. 2009 Aug;54(2):261-9. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.109.128645. Epub 2009 Jun 22.


The (pro)renin receptor ([P]RR) is a transmembrane protein that binds both renin and prorenin with high affinity, increasing the catalytic cleavage of angiotensinogen and signaling intracellularly through mitogen-activated protein kinase activation. Although initially reported as having no homology with any known membrane protein, other studies have suggested that the (P)RR is an accessory protein, named ATP6ap2, that associates with the vacuolar H(+)-ATPase, a key mediator of final urinary acidification. Using in situ hybridization, immunohistochemistry, and electron microscopy, together with serial sections stained with nephron segment-specific markers, we found that (P)RR mRNA and protein were predominantly expressed in collecting ducts and in the distal nephron. Within collecting ducts, the (P)RR was most abundant in microvilli at the apical surface of A-type intercalated cells. Dual-staining immunofluorescence demonstrated colocalization of the (P)RR with the B1/2 subunit of the vacuolar H(+)-ATPase, the ion exchanger that secretes H(+) ions into the urinary space and that associates with an accessory subunit homologous to the (P)RR. In collecting duct/distal tubule lineage Madin-Darby canine kidney cells, extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 phosphorylation, induced by either renin or prorenin, was attenuated by the selective vacuolar H(+)-ATPase inhibitor bafilomycin. The predominant expression of the (P)RR at the apex of acid-secreting cells in the collecting duct, along with its colocalization and homology with an accessory protein of the vacuolar H(+)-ATPase, suggests that the (P)RR may function primarily in distal nephron H(+) transport, recently noted to be, at least in part, an angiotensin II-dependent phenomenon.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Biological Transport / physiology*
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Kidney Tubules, Collecting / cytology*
  • Kidney Tubules, Collecting / metabolism
  • Male
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Phosphorylation
  • Probability
  • Prorenin Receptor
  • Random Allocation
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / metabolism*
  • Renin-Angiotensin System / physiology*
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Sodium-Bicarbonate Symporters / metabolism
  • Vacuolar Proton-Translocating ATPases / metabolism*


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Sodium-Bicarbonate Symporters
  • Vacuolar Proton-Translocating ATPases
  • Prorenin Receptor