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Cellular physiology of the renal H+ATPase.

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Vacuolar-type H+ATPases are multisubunit macromolecules that play an essential role in renal acid-base homeostasis. Other cellular processes also rely on the proton pumping ability of H+ATPases to acidify organellar or lumenal spaces. Several diseases, including distal renal tubular acidosis, osteoporosis and wrinkly skin syndrome, are due to mutations in genes encoding alternate subunits that make up the H+ATPase. This review highlights recent key articles in this research area.

RECENT FINDINGS: Further insights into the structure, expression and regulation of H+ATPases have been elucidated, within the kidney and elsewhere. This knowledge may enhance the potential for future drug targeting.

SUMMARY: Novel findings concerning tissue-specific subunits of the H+ATPase that are important in the kidney and more general lessons of H+ATPase function and regulation are slowly emerging, though the paucity of cellular tools available has to date limited progress.

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