Experiments were carried out with the marine sponge Suberites domuncula to determine whether sponges may express like mammalian tumor cells a multidrug-like transporter system. The results demonstrate that sponge cells possess such a protective system termed multixenobiotic resistance (MXR) pump or P-glycoprotein-like pump. The protein was identified by antisera for the mammalian P170 multidrug resistance protein as a 130 kDa molecule. Binding studies were performed with 3H-vincristine [3H-VCR) and membrane vesicles; this process is ATP-dependent and inhibited by verapamil, which is known to reverse the multidrug-resistance phenotype in mammalian systems. Accumulation experiments were performed to demonstrate that the uptake of 3H-VCR is time-dependent, and increases at elevated extracellular levels of 3H-VCR. Application of the dyeing technique with calcein-AM, a suitable functional assay for multidrug transporter systems in mammal cells, also revealed the existence of the MXR pump in S. domuncula plasma membranes. These data demonstrate that S. domuncula is provided with a multidrug-like transporter, the MXR pump, which might function as a protection system for sponges in polluted environments.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Aquatic Science