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Cytochalasin B and water transport

A scanning electron microscope study of the toad urinary bladder

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A morpho-functional study of the effects of cytochalasin B (CB) on Na and water transport was made in amphibian epithelia. The functional studies confirmed the dissociation of the natriferic and hydrosmotic effects of vasopressin in toad urinary bladders exposed to CB and showed in addition that the block of the hydrosmotic effect was reversible and could still be induced in epithelia maximally stimulated with the hormone. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that CB, per se, did not alter the apical surface of the bladders. An almost total loss of microvilli of granular cells was seen, however, if CB was associated with vasopressin and an osmotic gradient. The results suggest two points: a) the block of the hydrosmotic flow induced by CB is due to factors beyond the apical membrane; b) microfilaments may be important mechanochemical transducers in the chain of events leading to the hydrosmotic effect of vasopressin.

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Correspondence to R. C. de Sousa.

Additional information

Supported by the grants Nos 3.1300.73 and 3.043-0.76 of the Swiss National Science Foundation

The authors are grateful to Miss C. Brücher, SEM operator of the Department of Physics, Ciba-Geigy, for skillful collaboration, to Mr. R. Mira for the illustrations and to Mrs. A. Cergneux for secretarial assistance

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Grosso, A., Spinelli, F. & de Sousa, R.C. Cytochalasin B and water transport. Cell Tissue Res. 188, 375–388 (1978). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00219779

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Key words

  • Urinary bladder
  • Skin
  • Toad, frog
  • Water flow
  • Na transport
  • Vasopressin
  • Cytochalasin B
  • Microfilaments
  • Scanning electron microscopy