The Journal of Membrane Biology

, Volume 44, Issue 1, pp 67–83 | Cite as

The paracellular pathway in toad urinary bladder: Permselectivity and kinetics of opening

  • Arthur L. Finn
  • Jesse Bright


Determination of serosa-to-mucosa fluxes of Na, K, and Cl yields information about the properties of the shunt pathway in toad urinary bladder. We show that measurement of these fluxes at 30-sec intervals following an abrupt increase in mucosal osmolality yields evidence on the rate of opening of the path and of its permselectivity. The relationship between the fluxes of any pair of these ions indicates that the shunt is paracellular both before and after the increase in conductance effected by hyperosmolality and that the transepithelial PD affects the permselectivity properties (at 0 mV,PK/PNa/PCl= 1∶0.71∶0.57; at +25 mV,PK/PNa/PCl=1∶0.71∶0.99). The relationship between any of the fluxes and the total transepithelial conductance is linear and yields an estimate of cellular conductance (the intercept of this regression on the conductance axis) which is in accord with that measured electrically. These studies provide information on tight junction permeability to nonelectrolytes, as well. Finally, they provide new information about the role of the shunt path as a controlling influence on transepithelial sodium transport and raise the possibility that, in both leaky and tight epithelia, differences in transepithelial conductance from tissue to tissue, organ to organ, and species to species may be due, in the absence of edge damage, to changes in conductance of the paracellular pathway.


Tight Junction Sodium Transport Yield Information Paracellular Pathway Shunt Pathway 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Arthur L. Finn
    • 1
  • Jesse Bright
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Medicine and PhysiologyUniversity of North CarolinaChapel Hill

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