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Evaluation of acetate uptake and its relative conversion to acetyl choline in torpedo marmorata electric organ synaptosomes under different ionic and metabolic conditions

, : Evaluation of acetate uptake and its relative conversion to acetyl choline in torpedo marmorata electric organ synaptosomes under different ionic and metabolic conditions. Neurochemistry International 6(3): 339-346

The uptake of acetate and its incorporation into acetylcholine [ACh] were measured under various conditions in nerve terminals isolated from the electric organ to characterize acetate uptake, and to study the relationship between acetate uptake and ACh synthesis in a pure cholinergic preparation. Increasing extracellular choline up to 10-4 M had no effect on either acetate uptake or the conversion of acetate to ACh, while the addition of hemicholinium-3 to the incubation medium led to decreases in both parameters. Endogenous levels of choline are sufficient to support ongoing ACh synthesis in this preparation, and this synthesis depends to some extent on the uptake of extracellular choline. Nonetheless, in the absence of choline uptake, both the uptake of acetate and the conversion of acetate to ACh remained substantial, indicating that internal sources of choline can be used as well for ACh synthesis. Acetate uptake displayed a marked requirement for external Na+ and was decreased following depolarization of the synaptosomes by an elevated K+ concentration. The conversion of acetate to ACh followed a similar pattern, except that a small reduction in ACh synthesis was observed in the absence of external Ca2+, while acetate uptake was unaffected. The addition of ATP, AMP-PNP [adenyl imidophosphate] or phosphate to the incubation medium caused an increase in both the uptake and incorporation of acetate, but adenosine had no effect on either of these functions. Choline uptake, meanwhile, was unchanged in the presence of ATP, phosphate or adenosine. Acetate uptake appears to be more closely linked to its intracellular metabolism than to the transmembrane movement of choline itself. The mechanism by which acetate crosses the nerve terminal membrane was not established, but the possibility that acetate is a substrate for a monocarboxylate transport system, such as has been described in other systems, can be ruled out since inhibitors of anion permeability do not block acetate uptake in this preparation.

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