H2O2 regulates lung epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) via ubiquitin-like protein Nedd8

Charles A. Downs, Amrita Kumar, Lisa H. Kreiner, Nicholle M. Johnson, My N. Helms

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Redundancies in both the ubiquitin and epithelial sodium transport pathways allude to their importance of proteolytic degradation and ion transport in maintaining normal cell function. The classical pathway implicated in ubiquitination of the epithelial sodium channel (ENaC) involves Nedd4-2 regulation of sodium channel subunit expression and has been studied extensively studied. However, less attention has been given to the role of the ubiquitin-like protein Nedd8. Here we show that Nedd8 plays an important role in the ubiquitination of ENaC in alveolar epithelial cells. We report that the Nedd8 pathway is redox-sensitive and that under oxidizing conditions Nedd8 conjugation to Cullin-1 is attenuated, resulting in greater surface expression of α-ENaC. This observation was confirmed in our electrophysiology studies in which we inhibited Nedd8-activating enzyme using MLN4924 (a specific Nedd8-activating enzyme inhibitor) and observed a marked increase in ENaC activity (measured as the product of the number of channels (N) and the open probability (Po) of a channel). These results suggest that ubiquitination of lungENaCis redox-sensitive and may have significant implications for our understanding of the role of ENaC in pulmonary conditions where oxidative stress occurs, such as pulmonary edema and acute lung injury.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8136-8145
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number12
StatePublished - Mar 22 2013
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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