Routes for renal transport of methylmercury in mice

Toshiko Tanaka, Akira Naganuma, Nobumasa Imura

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2 Citations (Scopus)


To clarify the routes for renal methylmercury uptake, the effects of ureter ligation and pretreatment of probenecid, an organic anion transport inhibitor, or acivicin, a γ-glutamyltranspeptidase (γ-GTP) inhibitor, on renal methylmercury content were investigated in mice. For 120 min after CH3HgCl (5 μmol/kg, i.v.) injection, renal methylmercury content in bilateral ureter-ligated mice was approximately 50% lower than that of sham-operated mice. The glomerular filtration rate was reduced to about 15% of the control by ureter ligation. These results suggest an important role of glomerular filtration in the renal methylmercury uptake. Pretreatment with probenecid (0.5 or 1.0 mmol/kg, i.p.) reduced the renal methylmercury accumulation 30 min after CH3HgCl injection in a dose-dependent manner in both ureter-ligated and sham-operated mice. Urinary methylmercury excretion was not affected by probenecid pretreatment. Renal methylmercury content of ureter-ligated mice was not changed by pretreatment with acivicin (0.5 or 1.0 mmol/kg, i.p.), which was previously reported to decrease the renal methylmercury content in mice. Coadministration of GSH (10 μmol/kg, i.v.) with CH3HgCl increased the renal methylmercury uptake determined 5 min after injection in ureter-ligated mice. These results suggest that at least two transport systems play major roles in renal methylmercury uptake: one is a route from the glomeruli through the brush border membrane which is dependent on the action of γ-GTP, and the other route is the one using an organic anion transport system through the basolateral membrane.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-14
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology: Environmental Toxicology and
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1992 May 1


  • Glutathione (reduced)
  • Methylmercury
  • Renal uptake
  • γ-Glutamyltranspeptidase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Pollution


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