Volume-sensitive chloride currents in primary cultures of human fetal vas deferens epithelial cells

J P Winpenny, C J Mathews, B Verdon, C J Wardle, J A Chambers, A Harris, B E Argent, M A Gray

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9 Citations (Scopus)


Using the patch-clamp technique, we have identified a large, outwardly rectifying, Cl--selective whole-cell current in primary cultures of human vas deferens epithelial cells. Whole-cell currents were time- and voltage-dependent and displayed inactivation following depolarising pulses >/= 60 mV. Currents were equally permeable to bromide (PBr/PCl = 1.05 +/- 0.04), iodide (PI/PCl = 1. 06 +/- 0.07) and Cl-, but significantly less permeable to gluconate (PGluc /PCl = 0.23 +/- 0.03). Currents spontaneously increased with time after establishing a whole-cell recording, but could be inhibited by exposure to a hypertonic bath solution which reduced inward currents by 68 +/- 4%. Subsequent exposure of the cells to a hypotonic bath solution led to a 418 +/- 110% increase in inward current, indicating that these currents are regulated by osmolarity. 4,4'-Diisothiocyanatostilbene-2,2'-disulphonic acid (100 microM) produced a rapid and reversible voltage-dependent block (60 +/- 5% and 10 +/- 7% inhibition of current, measured at +/- 60 mV, respectively). Dideoxyforskolin (50 microM) also reduced the volume-sensitive Cl- current, but with a much slower time course, by 41 +/- 13% and 32 +/- 16% (measured at +/- 60 mV, respectively). Tamoxifen (10 microM) had no effect on the whole-cell Cl- current. These results suggest that vas deferens epithelial cells possess a volume-sensitive Cl- conductance which has biophysical and pharmacological properties broadly similar to volume-sensitive Cl- currents previously described in a variety of cell types.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)644-54
Number of pages11
JournalPflügers Archiv: European Journal of Physiology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1996


  • 4,4'-Diisothiocyanostilbene-2,2'-Disulfonic Acid/pharmacology
  • Bromides/metabolism
  • Calcium/metabolism
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chloride Channels/metabolism
  • Colforsin/analogs & derivatives
  • Cyclic AMP/metabolism
  • Epithelial Cells
  • Epithelium/metabolism
  • Gluconates/metabolism
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Tamoxifen/pharmacology
  • Time Factors
  • Vas Deferens/embryology


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