Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.506, No.1, 237-242, 2018
Estrone sulphate uptake by the microvillous membrane of placental syncytiotrophoblast is coupled to glutamate efflux
Organic anion transporters (OATS) and organic anion transporting polypeptides (OATPs) are transport proteins that mediate exchange of metabolites, hormones and waste products. Directional transport by these transporters can occur when exchange is coupled to the gradients of other substrates. This study investigates whether the activity of OATP4A1 and OATP2A1 on the maternal facing microvillus membrane of the placental syncytiotrophoblast is coupled to the glutamate gradient. OAT and OATP transporter proteins were over expressed in Xenopus oocytes to study their transport characteristics. Further transport studies were performed in term human placental villous fragments. Xenopus oocytes expressing,OATP4A1 mediated glutamate uptake. No glutamate transport was observed in oocytes expressing OATI, OAT3, OAT7 or OATP2A1. In oocytes expressing OATP4A1, uptake of estrone sulphate, thyroid hormones T3 and T4 and the bile acid taurocholate stimulated glutamate efflux. In term placental villous fragments addition of estrone sulphate and taurocholate trans-stimulated glutamate efflux. Coupling of OATP4A1 to the glutamate gradient may drive placental uptake of estrone-sulphate and thyroid hormone while also facilitating uptake of potentially harmful bile acids. In contrast, if OATP2A1 is not coupled to a similar gradient, it may function more effectively as an efflux transporter, potentially mediating efflux of prostaglandins to the mother. This study provides further evidence for glutamate as an important counter-ion driving transport into the placenta. (C) 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc.