Establishment and characterization of a novel polarized MDCK epithelial cellular model for CFTR studies

Academic Article


  • F508del is the most common mutation in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene that is responsible for the genetic disease Cystic Fibrosis (CF). It results in a major failure of CFTR to traffic to the apical membrane of epithelial cells, where it should function as a chloride (Cl-) channel. Most studies on localization, processing and cellular trafficking of wild-type (wt) and F508del-CFTR have been performed in non-epithelial cells. Notwithstanding, polarized epithelial cells possess distinctly organized and regulated membrane trafficking pathways. We have used Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) type II cells (proximal tubular cells which do not express endogenous CFTR) to generate novel epithelial, polarized cellular models stably expressing wt- or F508del-CFTR through transduction with recombinant lentiviral vectors. Characterization of these cell lines shows that wt-CFTR is correctly processed and apically localized, producing a cAMP-activated Cl- conductance. In contrast, F508del-CFTR is mostly detected in itsimmature form, localized intracellularly and producing only residual Cl- conductance. These novel cell lines constitute bona fide models and significantly improved resources to investigate the molecular mechanisms of polarized membrane traffic of wt- and F508del-CFTR in the same cellular background. They are also useful to identify/validate novel therapeutic compounds for CF. Copyright © 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel.
  • Authors

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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Mendes F; Wakefield J; Bachhuber T; Barroso M; Bebok Z; Penque D; Kunzelmann K; Amaral MD
  • Start Page

  • 281
  • End Page

  • 290
  • Volume

  • 16
  • Issue

  • 4-6