Letter | Published:

Membrane proteins related to water transport in human erythrocytes

Abstract

CLASSICAL interpretations of the mechanism of water transport across mammalian red cell membranes assume the existence of aqueous membrane pores1–3. As the permeability coefficient to water measured under an osmotic pressure gradient is usually significantly higher than the corresponding value measured under diffusional flow, the human red cell membrane is thought to act both as a selective solvent and a molecular sieve. Its ability to function as a molecular sieve depends on the existence of the pores, which could be assembled from aggregates of integral membrane proteins which span the membrane4. It is generally agreed that at least two proteins span the human red cell membrane5–7. Using polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis we have found that a band which contains one of these proteins is selectively labelled by a water-transport inhibitor.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.

from$8.99

All prices are NET prices.

References

  1. 1

    Solomon, A. K., J. gen. Physiol., 51, 335 S (1968).

  2. 2

    Sha'afi, R. I., Rich, G. T., Sidel, V. W., Bossert, W., and Solomon, A. K., J. gen. Physiol., 50, 1377 (1967).

  3. 3

    Sha'afi, R. I., and Gary-Bobo, C. M., Prog. Biophys. molec. Biol., 26, 105 (1973).

  4. 4

    Singer, S. J., A. Rev. Biochem., 44, 866 (1974).

  5. 5

    Bretscher, M. S., Science, 181, 622 (1973).

  6. 6

    Segrest, J. P., Kahane, I., Jackson, R. L., and Marchesi, V. T., Archs biochem. Biophys., 155, 167 (1973).

  7. 7

    Steck, T. L., Fairbanks, G., and Wallach, D. F. H., 10, 2617 (1971).

  8. 8

    Naccache, P., and Sha'afi, R. I., J. Cell Physiol., 84, 449 (1974).

  9. 9

    Macey, R. I., and Farmer, R. E. L., Biochim. biophys. Acta, 211, 104 (1970).

  10. 10

    Macey, R. I., Karan, D. M., and Farmer, R. E. L., in Passive Permeability of Cell Membrane (edit. by Krenzer, F., and Segers, J. F. G.), 331, (Plenum, New York, 1972).

  11. 11

    Rothstein, A., in Topics in Membrane and Transport (edit. by Bronner, F., and Kleinzeller, A.) 1, 15 (1970).

  12. 12

    Fairbanks, G., Steck, T. L., and Walach, D. F. H., Biochemistry, 10, 2606 (1971).

  13. 13

    Cabantchik, Z. I., and Rothstein, A. J. Membrane Biol., 15, 207 (1974).

  14. 14

    Cabantchik, Z. I., and Rothstein, A. J. Membrane Biol., 15, 227 (1974).

  15. 15

    Avruch, J., and Fairbanks, C., Proc. natn. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 69, 1216 (1972).

  16. 16

    Knauf, P. A., Proverbio, F., and Hoffman, J. F., J. gen. Physiol. (in the press).

Download references

Author information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Further reading

Comments

By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.