Vacuolar H+-ATPase apical accumulation in kidney intercalated cells is regulated by PKA and AMP-activated protein kinase

Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2010 May;298(5):F1162-9. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00645.2009. Epub 2010 Feb 10.


The vacuolar H(+)-ATPase (V-ATPase) in type A kidney intercalated cells is a major contributor to acid excretion in the collecting duct. The mechanisms of V-ATPase-trafficking regulation in kidney intercalated cells have not been well-characterized. In developmentally related epididymal clear cells, we showed previously that PKA, acting downstream of soluble adenylyl cyclase (sAC), induces V-ATPase apical membrane accumulation. These PKA-mediated effects were inhibited by activators of the metabolic sensor AMP-activated kinase (AMPK) in clear cells. Here, we examined the regulation of V-ATPase subcellular localization in intercalated cells by PKA and AMPK in rat kidney tissue slices ex vivo. Immunofluorescence labeling of kidney slices revealed that the PKA activator N(6)-monobutyryl cAMP (6-MB-cAMP) induced V-ATPase apical membrane accumulation in collecting duct intercalated cells, whereas the V-ATPase had a more cytosolic distribution when incubated in Ringer buffer alone for 30 min. V-ATPase accumulated at the apical membrane in intercalated cells in kidney slices incubated in Ringer buffer for 75 min, an effect that was prevented by treatment with PKA inhibitor (mPKI). The V-ATPase distribution was cytosolic in intercalated cells treated with the carbonic anhydrase inhibitor acetazolamide or the sAC inhibitor KH7, effects that were overridden by 6-MB-cAMP. Preincubation of kidney slices with an AMPK activator blocked V-ATPase apical membrane accumulation induced by 6-MB-cAMP, suggesting that AMPK antagonizes cAMP/PKA effects on V-ATPase distribution. Taken together, our results suggest that in intercalated cells V-ATPase subcellular localization and therefore its activity may be coupled to acid-base status via PKA, and metabolic status via AMPK.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • AMP-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Carbonic Anhydrases / metabolism
  • Cyclic AMP / metabolism
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Kidney / cytology
  • Kidney / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Models, Animal
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Vacuolar Proton-Translocating ATPases / metabolism*


  • Cyclic AMP
  • Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinases
  • AMP-Activated Protein Kinases
  • Vacuolar Proton-Translocating ATPases
  • Carbonic Anhydrases