Nax sodium channel is expressed in non-myelinating Schwann cells and alveolar type II cells in mice

Eiji Watanabe, Takeshi Y. Hiyama, Ryuji Kodama, Masaharu Noda

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34 Citations (Scopus)


Nax is an extracellular sodium-level-sensitive sodium channel expressed in the circumventricular organs in the brain, essential loci for the sodium-level homeostasis in body fluids. Here, we examined the localization of Nax throughout the visceral organs at the cellular level. In visceral organs including lung, heart, intestine, bladder, kidney and tongue, a subset of Schwann cells within the peripheral nerve trunks were highly positive for Nax. An electron microscopic study indicated that these Nax-positive cells were non-myelinating Schwann cells. In the lung, Nax-positive signals were also observed in the alveolar type II cells, which actively absorb sodium and water to aid gas exchange through the alveolar surface. It was thus suggested that the Nax sodium channel is involved in controlling the local extracellular sodium level through sodium absorption activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-113
Number of pages5
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Sep 13 2002
Externally publishedYes



  • Glia
  • Lung
  • Na2
  • NaG
  • Schwann cell
  • Sodium channel
  • Sodium sensor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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