The substrate-dependency of gastric acid secretion was investigated in isolated rat parietal cells by using the accumulation of the weak base aminopyrine as an index of acid secretion. Exogenous substrates enhanced accumulation of aminopyrine in rat parietal cells stimulated by secretagogues, and this effect was probably directly related to the provision of energy for acid secretion. At physiological concentrations, certain of the substrates (glucose, oleate, lactate, D-3-hydroxybutyrate, L-isoleucine, L-valine and acetoacetate) could support acid secretion, with glucose being the most effective. L-Leucine and acetate were only effective stimulators of parietal-cell aminopyrine accumulation at high concentrations (5mM). L-Glutamine was unable to stimulate aminopyrine accumulation even at high concentrations, and glutaminase activity in parietal cells was estimated to be low by comparison with small-intestinal epithelial cells. Variation in the concentrations of D-3-hydroxybutyrate and L-isoleucine, but not of glucose, within the physiological range affected their ability to support aminopyrine accumulation. The presence of 5 mM-L-isoleucine, 5 mM-lactate and combinations of certain substrates at physiological concentrations produced aminopyrine accumulation in stimulated parietal cells that was greater than that obtained in cells incubated with 5 mM-glucose alone. In conclusion, fulfillment of the metabolic requirements of the acid-secreting parietal cell under physiological circumstances requires a combination of substrates, and integration of the results with previous data [Anderson & Hanson (1983) Biochem. J. 210, 451-455; 212, 875-879] suggests that after overnight starvation in vivo metabolism of glucose, D-3-hydroxybutyrate and L-isoleucine may be of particular importance.

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