, Volume 137, Issue 5, pp 589-597
Date: 07 Feb 2012

Guanylin and functional coupling proteins in the hepatobiliary system of rat and guinea pig

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Guanylin, a bioactive intestinal peptide, is involved in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance (CFTR)-regulated electrolyte/water secretion in various epithelia. In the present work we report on the expression and cellular localization of guanylin and its affiliated signaling and effector proteins, including guanylate cyclase C (Gucy2c), Proteinkinase GII (Pkrg2), CFTR and the solute carrier family 4, anion exchanger, member 2 (Slc4a2) in the hepatobiliary system of rat and guinea pig. Localization studies in the liver and the gallbladder revealed that guanylin is located in the secretory epithelial cells of bile ducts of the liver and of the gallbladder, while Gucy2c, Pkrg2, CFTR, and Slc4a2 are confined exclusively to the apical membrane of the same epithelial cells. Based on these findings, we assume that guanylin is synthesized as an intrinsic peptide in epithelial cells of the hepatobiliary system and released luminally into the hepatic and cystic bile to regulate electrolyte secretion by a paracrine/luminocrine signaling pathway.