Archives of Toxicology

, Volume 65, Issue 5, pp 366–372 | Cite as

Effects of cysteine derivatives of styrene on the transport ofp-aminohippurate ion in renal plasma membrane vesicles

  • Saroj Chakrabarti
  • Dinh Duc Vu
  • Michel G. Côté
Original Investigations


The effects of cysteine conjugates of styrene, e.g. S-1/2-(phenyl-hydroxyethyl) cysteine (PEC) and its N-acetyl derivative (NAPEC) on the transport ofp-aminohippurate (PAH) ion in plasma membranes were studied in vitro using isolated rat renal brush-border membrane (BBM) and basolateral membrane (BLM) vesicles. The uptake of PAH was significantly inhibited by both PEC and NAPEC in both the membrane vesicles, as verified by decrease of the membrane/medium concentration ratio of PAH as the concentration of either PEC or NAPEC in the medium increased. These results show that both PEC and NAPEC are capable of interfering with the accumulation of PAH (a model organic anion for renal tubular transport system) by both energy-independent and energy-dependent carrier-mediated transport processes. The inhibition of PAH uptake in BBM vesicles due to 10 mM PEC or NAPEC was found to be nearly competitive, almost similar to probenecid, whereas in BLM vesicles such inhibition was found to be partially noncompetitive, as verified by the double reciprocal plots. Both PEC and NAPEC showed dose-dependent inhibition of the specific activity of the marker enzyme in each membrane, e. g. gamma-glutamyl transferase in BBM and Na+-K+-ATPase in BLM vesicles. However, no such inhibition was noticed with probenecid. The in vitro pretreatment with probenecid prevented the inhibition of gamma-glutamyl transferase activity in BBM due to PEC or NAPEC, but such was not the case for the Na+-K+-ATPase activity in BLM. In conclusion, the data suggest that the transport of cysteine or N-acetylcysteine conjugates of styrene by renal proximal tubular cells across both the membrane vesicles accompanied by the inhibition of the membrane-specific enzymes may lead to cellular dysfunction and consequently to the initial development of their nephrotoxicity.

Key words

S-1/2-(Phenyl-hydroxyethyl)cysteine Organic anion transport Brush border membrane vesicles Basolateral membrane vesicles Nephrotoxicity 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saroj Chakrabarti
    • 1
  • Dinh Duc Vu
    • 1
  • Michel G. Côté
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Occupational and Environmental healthUniversité de MontréalMontréalCanada
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of MedicineUniversité de MontréalMontréalCanada

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