The osmolyte function of amino acids and Cl in native NIH/3T3 cells not expressing the P-glycoprotein was examined by investigating the free amino acid concentration and the swelling-activated efflux of [3H]taurine, as representative of amino acids, and of 125I, as a tracer for Cl. Taurine and 125I efflux was activated by 20 and 30% hyposmotic solutions. At 50% hyposmotic solutions, the osmolyte pool was essentially depleted. The Cl channel blockers 5-nitro-2-(3-phenylpropyl-amino)benzoic acid, 1,9-dideoxyforskolin, dipyridamole, and niflumic acid inhibited the release of the two osmolytes by 80-95%. 4,4'-Diisothiocyanostilbene-2,2'-disulfonic acid (400 microM) decreased the efflux of taurine 80% without affecting that of 125I. Linolenic and arachidonic acids (5-20 microM) showed a concentration-dependent inhibitory effect on taurine and 125I fluxes. Omission of Ca decreased osmolyte fluxes by 16%. Verapamil inhibited the osmolyte release only at 500 microM. Nimodipine at 25 and 50 microM decreased the release of [3H]taurine and 125I by approximately 60 and 80%, respectively, but this effect was independent of the presence of extracellular Ca. These results indicate that amino acids and Cl function as osmolytes during regulatory volume decrease in native NIH/ 3T3 cells.
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