Regulation and dysregulation of epithelial Na+ channels

Clin Exp Nephrol. 2012 Feb;16(1):35-43. doi: 10.1007/s10157-011-0496-z. Epub 2011 Nov 1.


Epithelial Na(+) channels (ENaC) form a highly regulated pathway for the reabsorption of Na(+) from urine. This regulation can take place at a number of different levels, including synthesis of channel protein, trafficking of the protein between the surface and internal membranes, proteolytic cleavage and channel gating. This article reviews the role of these different modes of regulation under physiological conditions and considers the possible contributions of dysregulation of these processes in disease states, particularly hypertension.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aldosterone / physiology
  • Animals
  • Epithelial Sodium Channels / drug effects
  • Epithelial Sodium Channels / physiology*
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / physiopathology
  • Kidney / physiology
  • Receptors, Purinergic P2Y / physiology
  • Serine Endopeptidases / metabolism
  • Sodium / pharmacology


  • Epithelial Sodium Channels
  • Receptors, Purinergic P2Y
  • Aldosterone
  • Sodium
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases
  • Serine Endopeptidases
  • prostasin