In urinary epithelia, like the turtle bladder, protons are transported by a H+ translocating ATPase located in the luminal membrane. We have recently discovered that the H+ pump is stored in small vesicles that lie underneath the luminal membrane. CO2, a major regulator of H+ transport causes these vesicles to fuse with the membrane thereby inserting more H+ pumps. We have now isolated these vesicles from the turtle bladder and from beef kidney medulla. Based on inhibitor sensitivity and substrate specificity this proton translocating ATPase is different from the mitochondrial F0-F1 ATPase, yeast plasma membrane and the gastric H+,K+-ATPase. Solubilization and reconstitution of the enzyme into liposomes shows retention of transport activity and inhibitor sensitivity.

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