G protein-coupled receptor 37L1 regulates renal sodium transport and blood pressure

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



American Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology








Blood pressure; ETBR-LP2; G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR); GPR37L1; Sodium transport


© 2019 the American Physiological Society. G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) in the kidney regulate the reabsorption of essential nutrients, ions, and water from the glomerular filtrate. Abnormalities in renal epithelial ion transport play important roles in the pathogenesis of essential hypertension. The orphan G protein-coupled receptor 37L1 (GPR37L1), also known as endothelin receptor type B-like protein (ETBR-LP2), is expressed in several regions in the brain, but its expression profile and function in peripheral tissues are poorly understood. We found that GPR37L1 mRNA expression is highest in the brain, followed by the stomach, heart, testis, and ovary, with moderate expression in the kidney, pancreas, skeletal muscle, liver, lung, and spleen. Immunofluorescence analyses revealed the expression of GPR37L1 in specific regions within some organs. In the kidney, GPR37L1 is expressed in the apical membrane of renal proximal tubule cells. In human renal proximal tubule cells, the transient expression of GPR37LI increased intracellular sodium, whereas the silencing of GPR37LI decreased intracellular sodium. Inhibition of Na+/H+ exchanger isoform 3 (NHE3) activity abrogated the GPR37L1-mediated increase in intracellular sodium. Renal-selective silencing of Gpr37l1 in mice increased urine output and sodium excretion and decreased systolic and diastolic blood pressures. The renal-selective silencing of GPR37L1 decreased the protein expression of NHE3 but not the expression of Na+-K+-ATPase or sodium-glucose cotransporter 2. Our findings show that in the kidney, GPR37L1 participates in renal proximal tubule luminal sodium transport and regulation of blood pressure by increasing the renal expression and function of NHE3 by decreasing cAMP production. The role of GPR37L1, expressed in specific cell types in organs other than the kidney, remains to be determined.