Lipophilic Cations as Membrane Probes in Cultured Renal (LLC-PK1) and Muscle Cells (L6)
Tetraphenylphosphonium (TPP) and triphenylmethylphosphonium (TPMP) are lipophilic cations which have been used to measure transmembrane potentials in vesicles, mitochondria, and plant and animal cells (Cafimo and Hubbell, 1978; Ritchie, 1984). The use of TPP and TPMP to estimate electrical potentials in animal cells has many sources of error. There is, however, a qualitative proportionality between their uptake and the transmembrane potential difference which can provide useful information about the biological activity of chemicals. Lipophilic cations have also been used as probes of charge alterations in both lipid and protein domains of biomembranes (Levitsky et al., 1986; Cafiso, 1984). The relationship between charge alterations on, or within, biomembranes and the manifestations of toxicity in animals is not well established. None-theless, in vitro studies indicate that such alterations can have profound effects on transport systems and receptors associated with cell membranes (Levitsby et al., 1986; Cafiso, 1984).
KeywordsToxicity Filtration Choline HEPES Acetylcholine
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