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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Heavy metals mercury, cadmium, and chromium inhibit the activity of the mammalian liver and kidney sulfate transporter sat-1.

Heavy metal intoxication leads to defects in cellular uptake mechanisms in the mammalian liver and kidney. We have studied the effects of several heavy metals, including mercury, lead, cadmium, and chromium (at concentrations of 1 to 1000 microM), on the activity of the mammalian sulfate transporter sat-1(2) in Xenopus oocytes. sat-1 encodes a sulfate/bicarbonate anion exchanger expressed in the rat liver and kidney. Mercury (10 microM) strongly inhibited sat-1 transport by reducing Vmax by eightfold but not its Km for inorganic sulfate (Si). Lead (up to 1 mM) was unable to significantly inhibit sat-1 transporter activity. Cadmium (500 microM) showed weak inhibition of sat-1 transport by decreasing only sat-1 Vmax. Chromium (100 microM) strongly inhibited sat-1 transport by reducing Km for Si by sevenfold, most probably by binding to the Si site, due to the strong structural similarity between the CrO2-4 and SO2-4 substrates. This study presents the first characterization of heavy metal inhibition of the hepatic and renal sulfate/bicarbonate transporter sat-1, through various mechanisms, which may lead to sulfaturia following heavy metal intoxication.[1]


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