The exit of alanine across the serosal border of the epithelial cells of turtle intestine was measured by direct and indirect techniques. A decrease or an increase in cell Na did not affect the amino acid flux from cell to serosal solution. Cells loaded with Na and alanine did not exhibit any extrusion of alanine when their serosal membranes were exposed to an Na-free medium containing alanine. However, substantial amino acid extrusion was observed across the mucosal cell border under similar conditions. Although alanine flux across the serosal membrane appeared to be Na-independent, it showed a tendency toward saturation as cellular alanine concentration was elevated. The results are consistent with the postulate that the serosal and mucosal membranes of intestinal cells are asymmetrical with respect to amino acid transport mechanisms. The serosal membrane appears to have an Na-independent carrier-mediated mechanism responsible for alanine transport while transport across the mucosal border involves an Na-dependent process.

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