mCCD cl1 cells show plasticity consistent with the ability to transition between principal and intercalated cells

A. M. Assmus, M. K. Mansley, L. J. Mullins*, A. Peter, J. J. Mullins

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


The cortical collecting duct of the mammalian kidney plays a critical role in the regulation of body volume, sodium pH, and osmolarity and is composed of two distinct cells types, principal cells and intercalated cells. Each cell type is detectable in the kidney by the localization of specific transport proteins such as aquaporin 2 (Aqp2) and epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) in principal cells and V-ATPase B1 and connexin 30 (Cx30) in intercalated cells. mCCD cl1 cells have been widely used as a mouse principal cell line on the basis of their physiological characteristics. In this study, the mCCD cl1 parental cell line and three sublines cloned from isolated single cells (Ed1, Ed2, and Ed3) were grown on filters to assess their transepithelial resistance, transepithelial voltage, equivalent short circuit current and expression of the cell-specific markers Aqp2, ENaC, V-ATPaseB1, and Cx30. The parental mCCD cl1 cell line presented amiloride-sensitive electrogenic sodium transport indicative of principal cell function; however, immunocytochemistry and RT-PCR showed that some cells expressed the intercalated cell-specific markers V-ATPase B1 and Cx30, including a subset of cells also positive for Aqp2 and ENaC. The three subclonal lines contained cells that were positive for both intercalated and principal cell-specific markers. The vertical transmission of both principal and intercalated cell characteristics via single cell cloning reveals the plasticity of mCCD cl1 cells and a direct lineage relationship between these two physiologically important cell types and is consistent with mCCDcl1 cells being precursor cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)F820-F831
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Bipotential
  • Cortical collecting duct
  • Intercalated cells
  • MCCDcl1
  • Principal cells


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