Localization of beta adrenoceptor subtypes in rat kidney by light microscopic autoradiography

R. J. Summers, J. A. Stephenson, M. J. Kuhar

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The characteristics and localization of beta adrenoceptor subtypes in rat kidney sections have been examined using [125I]cyanopindolol and in vitro labeling combined with autoradiography. Binding was stereoselective since the (-)-isomers of propranolol and pindolol were some two orders of magnitude more effective as competitors than the (+)-isomers. Competition curves obtained using the subtype selective antagonists ICI 118,551 (beta-2) and betaxolol (beta-1) had low pseudo Hill coefficients and were resolved into two distinct components representing beta-1 (63%) and beta-2 adrenoceptors (37%). Combined autoradiographic and histochemical studies using nuclear emulsion-coated coverslips and alkaline phosphatase staining showed that the majority of receptors were in the renal cortex and in the outer band of the medulla with fewer receptors associated with the inner medulla, papilla and renal blood vessels. Delineation of beta-1 and beta-2 adrenoceptor subtypes with the selective antagonists betaxolol and ICI 118,551 indicated that the highly localized receptors were predominantly of the beta-1 subtype, associated with glomeruli and with tubules that from their staining characteristics and topography represent distal and cortical collecting tubules with few if any receptors associated with proximal tubules. Beta-2 adrenoceptors were more diffusely distributed in the cortex and there were minor areas of localization in the inner medulla. Although some glomerular beta adrenoceptors probably play a role in control of renin release, their distribution throughout this structure indicates that they also control other functions. The distribution of beta adrenoceptors in tubules corresponds well with the known distribution of beta adrenoceptor-stimulated adenylate cyclase in rat kidney and indicates that these receptors subserve a physiological function.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)561-569
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1985

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