Expression and developmental regulation of the NMDA receptor subunits in the kidney and cardiovascular system

Jocelyn C. Leung, Brett R. Travis, Jill W. Verlander, Satinder K. Sandhu, Song Gui Yang, Arnold H. Zea, I. David Weiner, Douglas M. Silverstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


Antagonists to the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor bind to various extraneuronal tissues. We therefore assessed the expression of the main NMDA subunit, NR1, in various tissues. We demonstrate that NR1 appears to be most abundant in the rat kidney and heart. NR1 is present in total rat kidney, cortex, and medulla. Of the NR2 subunits, only the NR2C subunit protein is present in the kidney. The abundance of the NR1 subunit protein increases with kidney development. Both NR1 and NR2C are present in opossum kidney, Madin-Darby canine kidney, and LLC-PK1 cells. Immunohistochemistry studies show that the NR1 subunit is present in the renal proximal tubule. NR1 is abundant in the atrium and ventricle but is also expressed in the aorta and pulmonary artery. The NR2 subunits are not expressed in the heart. NR1 subunit protein expression is constant throughout heart development. Finally, the NR1 subunit protein is expressed in heart cells (H9c2) grown in culture. These studies reveal the presence of the NMDA receptor in the kidney and the cardiovascular system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R964-R971
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number4 52-4
StatePublished - Oct 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Development
  • N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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