Measurement of transmural sodium fluxes across isolated, ouabain-inhibited turtle colon in the presence of a serosal-to-mucosal sodium gradient shows that in the absence of active transport the amiloride-sensitive cellular path contains at least two routes for the transmural movement of sodium and lithium, one a conductive path and the other a nonconductive, cation-exchange mechanism. The latter transport element can exchange lithium for sodium, and the countertransport of these two cations provides a mechanistic basis for the ability of tight epithelia to actively absorb lithium despite the low affinity of the basolateral Na/K-ATPase for this cation.

This content is only available as a PDF.