Some effects of ouabain on cellular ions and water in epithelial cells of toad urinary bladder

J Membr Biol. 1975;20(3-4):387-401. doi: 10.1007/BF01870645.


Transepithelial sodium transport was virtually abolished when toad urinary hemibladders, mounted in chambers and short-circuited, were exposed on their serosal surface to ouabain, 10-2 M,for 60 minutes. Epithelial cells scraped from such hemibladders gained sodium and lost an equal quantity of potassium when compared with controls not exposed to cardiac glycoside. Their total cellular cation content, chloride content and water content were unchanged. Experiments in which 24-Na, amiloride, or sodium-free mucosal solutions were used, revealed that a large, though variable, percentage of the sodium gained by cells exposed to oubain, came from the mucosal medium, a finding consistent with the model of passive sodium entry from the mucosal medium followed by active sodium extrusion to the serosa. The oubain-insensitive maintenance of cellular volume which was observed did not depend upon transepithelial sodium transport which had been virtually completely inhibited by ouabain. Neither did the maintenance of a normal cellular potassium content depend upon transepithelial sodium transport, for cellular potassium was unaffected when the mucosal medium was sodium-free or when it contained sufficient amiloride, 10-3 M, to virtually abolish such transport.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amiloride / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Biological Transport
  • Body Water / metabolism*
  • Bufo marinus
  • Chlorides / metabolism*
  • Epithelial Cells
  • Epithelium / drug effects
  • Epithelium / metabolism
  • Ouabain / pharmacology*
  • Potassium / metabolism*
  • Sodium / metabolism*
  • Urinary Bladder / drug effects
  • Urinary Bladder / metabolism*


  • Chlorides
  • Ouabain
  • Amiloride
  • Sodium
  • Potassium