ResearchPad - potassium-channels https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Model based estimation of QT intervals in non-invasive fetal ECG signals]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_7659 The end timing of T waves in fetal electrocardiogram (fECG) is important for the evaluation of ST and QT intervals which are vital markers to assess cardiac repolarization patterns. Monitoring malignant fetal arrhythmias in utero is fundamental to care in congenital heart anomalies preventing perinatal death. Currently, reliable detection of end of T waves is possible only by using fetal scalp ECG (fsECG) and fetal magnetocardiography (fMCG). fMCG is expensive and less accessible and fsECG is an invasive technique available only during intrapartum period. Another safer and affordable alternative is the non-invasive fECG (nfECG) which can provide similar assessment provided by fsECG and fMECG but with less accuracy (not beat by beat). Detection of T waves using nfECG is challenging because of their low amplitudes and high noise. In this study, a novel model-based method that estimates the end of T waves in nfECG signals is proposed. The repolarization phase has been modeled as the discharging phase of a capacitor. To test the model, fECG signals were collected from 58 pregnant women (age: (34 ± 6) years old) bearing normal and abnormal fetuses with gestational age (GA) 20-41 weeks. QT and QTc intervals have been calculated to test the level of agreement between the model-based and reference values (fsECG and Doppler Ultrasound (DUS) signals) in normal subjects. The results of the test showed high agreement between model-based and reference values (difference < 5%), which implies that the proposed model could be an alternative method to detect the end of T waves in nfECG signals.

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<![CDATA[Using computational models to predict in vivo synaptic inputs to interneuron specific 3 (IS3) cells of CA1 hippocampus that also allow their recruitment during rhythmic states]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c3e50b5d5eed0c484d84993

Brain coding strategies are enabled by the balance of synaptic inputs that individual neurons receive as determined by the networks in which they reside. Inhibitory cell types contribute to brain function in distinct ways but recording from specific, inhibitory cell types during behaviour to determine their contributions is highly challenging. In particular, the in vivo activities of vasoactive intestinal peptide-expressing interneuron specific 3 (IS3) cells in the hippocampus that only target other inhibitory cells are unknown at present. We perform a massive, computational exploration of possible synaptic inputs to IS3 cells using multi-compartment models and optimized synaptic parameters. We find that asynchronous, in vivo-like states that are sensitive to additional theta-timed inputs (8 Hz) exist when excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductances are approximately equally balanced and with low numbers of activated synapses receiving correlated inputs. Specifically, under these balanced conditions, the input resistance is larger with higher mean spike firing rates relative to other activated synaptic conditions investigated. Incoming theta-timed inputs result in strongly increased spectral power relative to baseline. Thus, using a generally applicable computational approach we predict the existence and features of background, balanced states in hippocampal circuits.

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<![CDATA[RNA-Seq Transcriptome Analysis of Direction-Selective T4/T5 Neurons in Drosophila]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dabaab0ee8fa60bae4d9

Neuronal computation underlying detection of visual motion has been studied for more than a half-century. In Drosophila, direction-selective T4/T5 neurons show supralinear signal amplification in response to stimuli moving in their preferred direction, in agreement with the prediction made by the Hassenstein-Reichardt detector. Nevertheless, the molecular mechanism explaining how the Hassenstein-Reichardt model is implemented in T4/T5 cells has not been identified yet. In the present study, we utilized cell type-specific transcriptome profiling with RNA-seq to obtain a complete gene expression profile of T4/T5 neurons. We analyzed the expression of genes that affect neuronal computational properties and can underlie the molecular implementation of the core features of the Hassenstein-Reichardt model to the dendrites of T4/T5 neurons. Furthermore, we used the acquired RNA-seq data to examine the neurotransmitter system used by T4/T5 neurons. Surprisingly, we observed co-expression of the cholinergic markers and the vesicular GABA transporter in T4/T5 neurons. We verified the previously undetected expression of vesicular GABA transporter in T4/T5 cells using VGAT-LexA knock-in line. The provided gene expression dataset can serve as a useful source for studying the properties of direction-selective T4/T5 neurons on the molecular level.

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<![CDATA[Ion channel expression patterns in glioblastoma stem cells with functional and therapeutic implications for malignancy]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db4fab0ee8fa60bdbc83

Ion channels and transporters have increasingly recognized roles in cancer progression through the regulation of cell proliferation, migration, and death. Glioblastoma stem-like cells (GSCs) are a source of tumor formation and recurrence in glioblastoma multiforme, a highly aggressive brain cancer, suggesting that ion channel expression may be perturbed in this population. However, little is known about the expression and functional relevance of ion channels that may contribute to GSC malignancy. Using RNA sequencing, we assessed the enrichment of ion channels in GSC isolates and non-tumor neural cell types. We identified a unique set of GSC-enriched ion channels using differential expression analysis that is also associated with distinct gene mutation signatures. In support of potential clinical relevance, expression of selected GSC-enriched ion channels evaluated in human glioblastoma databases of The Cancer Genome Atlas and Ivy Glioblastoma Atlas Project correlated with patient survival times. Finally, genetic knockdown as well as pharmacological inhibition of individual or classes of GSC-enriched ion channels constrained growth of GSCs compared to normal neural stem cells. This first-in-kind global examination characterizes ion channels enriched in GSCs and explores their potential clinical relevance to glioblastoma molecular subtypes, gene mutations, survival outcomes, regional tumor expression, and experimental responses to loss-of-function. Together, the data support the potential biological and therapeutic impact of ion channels on GSC malignancy and provide strong rationale for further examination of their mechanistic and therapeutic importance.

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<![CDATA[SAP97 and Cortactin Remodeling in Arrhythmogenic Purkinje Cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da5eab0ee8fa60b90708

Because structural remodeling of several proteins, including ion channels, may underlie the abnormal action potentials of Purkinje cells (PCs) that survive in the 48 hr infarcted zone of the canine heart (IZPCs), we sought to determine the subcellular structure and function of the KV1.5 (KCNA5) protein in single IZPCs. Clustering of the Kv1.5 subunit in axons is regulated by a synapse-associated protein, SAP97, and is linked to an actin-binding protein, cortactin, and an intercellular adhesion molecule, N-cadherin. To understand the functional remodeling of the Kv1.5 channel and its regulation in IZPCs, Kv1.5 currents in PCs were measured as the currents blocked by 10 µM RSD1379 using patch-clamp techniques. Immunocytochemistry and confocal imaging were used for both single and aggregated IZPCs vs normal PCs (NZPCs) to determine the relationship of Kv1.5 with SAP-97, cortactin and N-cadherin. In IZPCs, both the sarcolemma (SL) and intercalated disk (ID) Kv1.5 protein are abundant, and the amount of cytosolic Kv1.5 protein is greatly increased. SAP-97 is also increased at IDs and has notable cytosolic localization suggesting that SAP-97 may regulate the functional expression and stabilization of Kv1.5 channels in IZPCs. Cortactin, which is located with N-cadherin at IDs in NZPCs, remains at IDs but begins to dissociate from N-cadherin, often forming ring structures and colocalizing with Kv1.5 within IZPCs. At the same time, cortactin/Kv1.5 colocalization is increased at the ID, suggesting an ongoing active process of membrane trafficking of the channel protein. Finally, the Kv1.5 current, measured as the RSD1379-sensitive current, at +40 mV did not differ between NZPCs (0.81±0.24 pA/pF, n = 14) and IZPCs (0.83±0.21 pA/pF, n = 13, NS). In conclusion, the subcellular structural remodeling of Kv1.5, SAP97 and cortactin maintained and normalized the function of the Kv1.5 channel in Purkinje cells that survived myocardial infarction.

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<![CDATA[Modeling Electrophysiological Coupling and Fusion between Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells and Cardiomyocytes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dad3ab0ee8fa60bb6ffd

Human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) delivery has demonstrated promise in preclinical and clinical trials for myocardial infarction therapy; however, broad acceptance is hindered by limited understanding of hMSC-human cardiomyocyte (hCM) interactions. To better understand the electrophysiological consequences of direct heterocellular connections between hMSCs and hCMs, three original mathematical models were developed, representing an experimentally verified triad of hMSC families with distinct functional ion channel currents. The arrhythmogenic risk of such direct electrical interactions in the setting of healthy adult myocardium was predicted by coupling and fusing these hMSC models to the published ten Tusscher midcardial hCM model. Substantial variations in action potential waveform—such as decreased action potential duration (APD) and plateau height—were found when hCMs were coupled to the two hMSC models expressing functional delayed rectifier-like human ether à-go-go K+ channel 1 (hEAG1); the effects were exacerbated for fused hMSC-hCM hybrid cells. The third family of hMSCs (Type C), absent of hEAG1 activity, led to smaller single-cell action potential alterations during coupling and fusion, translating to longer tissue-level mean action potential wavelength. In a simulated 2-D monolayer of cardiac tissue, re-entry vulnerability with low (5%) hMSC insertion was approximately eight-fold lower with Type C hMSCs compared to hEAG1-functional hMSCs. A 20% decrease in APD dispersion by Type C hMSCs compared to hEAG1-active hMSCs supports the claim of reduced arrhythmogenic potential of this cell type with low hMSC insertion. However, at moderate (15%) and high (25%) hMSC insertion, the vulnerable window increased independent of hMSC type. In summary, this study provides novel electrophysiological models of hMSCs, predicts possible arrhythmogenic effects of hMSCs when directly coupled to healthy hCMs, and proposes that isolating a subset of hMSCs absent of hEAG1 activity may offer increased safety as a cell delivery cardiotherapy at low levels of hMSC-hCM coupling.

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<![CDATA[KCNMA1 Encoded Cardiac BK Channels Afford Protection against Ischemia-Reperfusion Injury]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da15ab0ee8fa60b7ad45

Mitochondrial potassium channels have been implicated in myocardial protection mediated through pre-/postconditioning. Compounds that open the Ca2+- and voltage-activated potassium channel of big-conductance (BK) have a pre-conditioning-like effect on survival of cardiomyocytes after ischemia/reperfusion injury. Recently, mitochondrial BK channels (mitoBKs) in cardiomyocytes were implicated as infarct-limiting factors that derive directly from the KCNMA1 gene encoding for canonical BKs usually present at the plasma membrane of cells. However, some studies challenged these cardio-protective roles of mitoBKs. Herein, we present electrophysiological evidence for paxilline- and NS11021-sensitive BK-mediated currents of 190 pS conductance in mitoplasts from wild-type but not BK−/− cardiomyocytes. Transmission electron microscopy of BK−/− ventricular muscles fibres showed normal ultra-structures and matrix dimension, but oxidative phosphorylation capacities at normoxia and upon re-oxygenation after anoxia were significantly attenuated in BK−/− permeabilized cardiomyocytes. In the absence of BK, post-anoxic reactive oxygen species (ROS) production from cardiomyocyte mitochondria was elevated indicating that mitoBK fine-tune the oxidative state at hypoxia and re-oxygenation. Because ROS and the capacity of the myocardium for oxidative metabolism are important determinants of cellular survival, we tested BK−/− hearts for their response in an ex-vivo model of ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury. Infarct areas, coronary flow and heart rates were not different between wild-type and BK−/− hearts upon I/R injury in the absence of ischemic pre-conditioning (IP), but differed upon IP. While the area of infarction comprised 28±3% of the area at risk in wild-type, it was increased to 58±5% in BK−/− hearts suggesting that BK mediates the beneficial effects of IP. These findings suggest that cardiac BK channels are important for proper oxidative energy supply of cardiomyocytes at normoxia and upon re-oxygenation after prolonged anoxia and that IP might indeed favor survival of the myocardium upon I/R injury in a BK-dependent mode stemming from both mitochondrial post-anoxic ROS modulation and non-mitochondrial localizations.

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<![CDATA[Downregulation of KCNMB4 expression and changes in BK channel subtype in hippocampal granule neurons following seizure activity]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5b45cf4a463d7e54c1d63af6

A major challenge is to understand maladaptive changes in ion channels that sets neurons on a course towards epilepsy development. Voltage- and calcium-activated K+ (BK) channels contribute to early spike timing in neurons, and studies indicate that the BK channel plays a pathological role in increasing excitability early after a seizure. Here, we have investigated changes in BK channels and their accessory β4 subunit (KCNMB4) in dentate gyrus (DG) granule neurons of the hippocampus, key neurons that regulate excitability of the hippocampus circuit. Two days after pilocarpine-induced seizures, we found that the predominant effect is a downregulation of the β4 accessory subunit mRNA. Consistent with reduced expression, single channel recording and pharmacology indicate a switch in the subtype of channels expressed; from iberiotoxin-resistant, type II BK channels (BK α/β4) that have higher channel open probability and slow gating, to iberiotoxin-sensitive type I channels (BK α alone) with low open probability and faster gating. The switch to a majority of type I channel expression following seizure activity is correlated with a loss of BK channel function on spike threshold while maintaining the channel’s contribution to increased early spike frequency. Using heterozygous β4 knockout mice, we find reduced expression is sufficient to increase seizure sensitivity. We conclude that seizure-induced downregulation of KCNMB4 is an activity dependent mechanism that increases the excitability of DG neurons. These novel findings indicate that BK channel subtypes are not only defined by cell-specific expression, but can also be plastic depending on the recent history of neuronal excitability.

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<![CDATA[Observation of σ-pore currents in mutant hKv1.2_V370C potassium channels]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db52ab0ee8fa60bdc5dc

Current through the σ-pore was first detected in hKv1.3_V388C channels, where the V388C mutation in hKv1.3 channels opened a new pathway (σ-pore) behind the central α-pore. Typical for this mutant channel was inward current at potentials more negative than -100 mV when the central α-pore was closed. The α-pore blockers such as TEA+ and peptide toxins (CTX, MTX) could not reduce current through the σ-pore of hKv1.3_V388C channels. This new pathway would proceed in parallel to the α-pore in the S6-S6 interface gap. To see whether this phenomenon is restricted to hKv1.3 channels we mutated hKv1.2 at the homologue position (hKv1.2_V370C). By overexpression of hKv1.2_V370C mutant channels in COS-7 cells we could show typical σ-currents. The electrophysiological properties of the σ-pore in hKv1.3_V388C and hKv1.2_V370C mutant channels were similar. The σ-pore of hKv1.2_V370C channels was most permeable to Na+ and Li+ whereas Cl- and protons did not influence current through the σ-pore. Tetraethylammonium (TEA+), charybdotoxin (CTX) and maurotoxin (MTX), known α-pore blockers, could not reduce current through the σ-pore of hKv1.2_V370C channels. Taken together we conclude that the observation of σ-pore currents is not restricted to Kv1.3 potassium channels but can also be observed in a closely related potassium channel. This finding could have implications in the treatment of different ion channel diseases linked to mutations of the respective channels in regions close to homologue position investigated by us.

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<![CDATA[Electrocardiographic Biomarkers for Detection of Drug-Induced Late Sodium Current Block]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da3aab0ee8fa60b87c14

Background

Drugs that prolong the heart rate corrected QT interval (QTc) on the electrocardiogram (ECG) by blocking the hERG potassium channel and also block inward currents (late sodium or L-type calcium) are not associated with torsade de pointes (e.g. ranolazine and verapamil). Thus, identifying ECG signs of late sodium current block could aid in the determination of proarrhythmic risk for new drugs. A new cardiac safety paradigm for drug development (the “CiPA” initiative) will involve the preclinical assessment of multiple human cardiac ion channels and ECG biomarkers are needed to determine if there are unexpected ion channel effects in humans.

Methods and Results

In this study we assess the ability of eight ECG morphology biomarkers to detect late sodium current block in the presence of QTc prolongation by analyzing a clinical trial where a selective hERG potassium channel blocker (dofetilide) was administered alone and then in combination with two late sodium current blockers (lidocaine and mexiletine). We demonstrate that late sodium current block has the greatest effect on the heart-rate corrected J-Tpeak interval (J-Tpeakc), followed by QTc and then T-wave flatness. Furthermore, J-Tpeakc is the only biomarker that improves detection of the presence of late sodium current block compared to using QTc alone (AUC: 0.83 vs. 0.72 respectively, p<0.001).

Conclusions

Analysis of the J-Tpeakc interval can differentiate drug-induced multichannel block involving the late sodium current from selective hERG potassium channel block. Future methodologies assessing drug effects on cardiac ion channel currents on the ECG should use J-Tpeakc to detect the presence of late sodium current block.

Trial Registration

NCT02308748 and NCT01873950

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<![CDATA[Moderate Hypoxia Influences Potassium Outward Currents in Adipose-Derived Stem Cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dab6ab0ee8fa60bacfdc

Moderate hypoxic preconditioning of adipose-derived stem cells (ASCs) enhances properties such as proliferation and secretion of growth factors, representing a valuable strategy to increase the efficiency of cell-based therapies. In a wide variety of cells potassium (K+) channels are key elements involved in the cellular responses to hypoxia, suggesting that ASCs cultured under low oxygen conditions may display altered electrophysiological properties. Here, the effects of moderate hypoxic culture on proliferation, whole-cell currents, and ion channel expression were investigated using human ASCs cultured at 5% and 20% oxygen. Although cell proliferation was greatly enhanced, the dose-dependent growth inhibition by the K+ channel blocker tetraethylammonium (TEA) was not significantly affected by hypoxia. Under both normoxic and hypoxic conditions, ASCs displayed outward K+ currents composed by Ca2+-activated, delayed rectifier, and transient components. Hypoxic culture reduced the slope of the current-voltage curves and caused a negative shift in the voltage activation threshold of the whole-cell currents. However, the TEA-mediated shift of voltage activation threshold was not affected by hypoxia. Semiquantitative real-time RT-PCR revealed that expression of genes encoding for various ion channels subunits related to oxygen sensing and proliferation remained unchanged after hypoxic culture. In conclusion, outward currents are influenced by moderate hypoxia in ASCs through a mechanism that is not likely the result of modulation of TEA-sensitive K+ channels.

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<![CDATA[Different Profile of mRNA Expression in Sinoatrial Node from Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetic Rat]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9e6ab0ee8fa60b6b2e6

Background

Experiments in isolated perfused heart have shown that heart rate is lower and sinoatrial node (SAN) action potential duration is longer in streptozotocin (STZ)–induced diabetic rat compared to controls. In sino-atrial preparations the pacemaker cycle length and sino-atrial conduction time are prolonged in STZ heart. To further clarify the molecular basis of electrical disturbances in the diabetic heart the profile of mRNA encoding a wide variety of proteins associated with the generation and transmission of electrical activity has been evaluated in the SAN of STZ-induced diabetic rat heart.

Methodology/Principal Findings

Heart rate was measured in isolated perfused heart with an extracellular suction electrode. Expression of mRNA encoding a variety of intercellular proteins, intracellular Ca2+-transport and regulatory proteins, cell membrane transport proteins and calcium, sodium and potassium channel proteins were measured in SAN and right atrial (RA) biopsies using real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction techniques. Heart rate was lower in STZ (203±7 bpm) compared to control (239±11 bpm) rat. Among many differences in the profile of mRNA there are some worthy of particular emphasis. Expression of genes encoding some proteins were significantly downregulated in STZ-SAN: calcium channel, Cacng4 (7-fold); potassium channel, Kcnd2 whilst genes encoding some other proteins were significantly upregulated in STZ-SAN: gap junction, Gjc1; cell membrane transport, Slc8a1, Trpc1, Trpc6 (4-fold); intracellular Ca2+-transport, Ryr3; calcium channel Cacna1g, Cacna1h, Cacnb3; potassium channels, Kcnj5, Kcnk3 and natriuretic peptides, Nppa (5-fold) and Nppb (7-fold).

Conclusions/Significance

Collectively, this study has demonstrated differences in the profile of mRNA encoding a variety of proteins that are associated with the generation, conduction and regulation of electrical signals in the SAN of STZ-induced diabetic rat heart. Data from this study will provide a basis for a substantial range of future studies to investigate whether these changes in mRNA translate into changes in electrophysiological function.

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<![CDATA[Avertin®, but Not Volatile Anesthetics Addressing the Two-Pore Domain K+ Channel, TASK-1, Slows Down Cilia-Driven Particle Transport in the Mouse Trachea]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da0fab0ee8fa60b78ee7

Rationale

Volatile anesthetics inhibit mucociliary clearance in the airways. The two-pore domain K+ channel, TASK-1, represents one of their molecular targets in that they increase its open probability. Here, we determine whether particle transport speed (PTS) at the mucosal surface of the mouse trachea, an important factor of the cilia-driven mechanism in mucociliary clearance, is regulated by TASK-1.

Methodology/Results

RT-PCR analysis revealed expression of TASK-1 mRNA in the manually dissected and laser-assisted microdissected tracheal epithelium of the mouse. Effects of anesthetics (isoflurane and Avertin®) and TASK-1 inhibitors (anandamide and A293) on ciliary activity were investigated by assessment of PTS at the mucosal surface of the explanted and opened murine trachea. Neither TASK-1 inhibitors nor isoflurane had any impact on basal and ATP-stimulated PTS. Avertin® reduced basal PTS, and ATP-stimulated PTS decreased in its presence in wild-type (WT) mice. Avertin®-induced decrease in basal PTS persisted in WT mice in the presence of TASK-1 inhibitors, and in two different strains of TASK-1 knockout mice.

Conclusions/Significance

Our findings indicate that TASK-1 is expressed by the tracheal epithelium but is not critically involved in the regulation of tracheal PTS in mice. Avertin® reduces PTS independent of TASK-1.

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<![CDATA[Osteopontin activates the diabetes-associated potassium channel TALK-1 in pancreatic β-cells]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db52ab0ee8fa60bdc702

Glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) relies on β-cell Ca2+ influx, which is modulated by the two-pore-domain K+ (K2P) channel, TALK-1. A gain-of-function polymorphism in KCNK16, the gene encoding TALK-1, increases risk for developing type-2 diabetes. While TALK-1 serves an important role in modulating GSIS, the regulatory mechanism(s) that control β-cell TALK-1 channels are unknown. Therefore, we employed a membrane-specific yeast two-hybrid (MYTH) assay to identify TALK-1-interacting proteins in human islets, which will assist in determining signaling modalities that modulate TALK-1 function. Twenty-one proteins from a human islet cDNA library interacted with TALK-1. Some of these interactions increased TALK-1 activity, including intracellular osteopontin (iOPN). Intracellular OPN is highly expressed in β-cells and is upregulated under pre-diabetic conditions to help maintain normal β-cell function; however, the functional role of iOPN in β-cells is poorly understood. We found that iOPN colocalized with TALK-1 in pancreatic sections and coimmunoprecipitated with human islet TALK-1 channels. As human β-cells express two K+ channel-forming variants of TALK-1, regulation of these TALK-1 variants by iOPN was assessed. At physiological voltages iOPN activated TALK-1 transcript variant 3 channels but not TALK-1 transcript variant 2 channels. Activation of TALK-1 channels by iOPN also hyperpolarized resting membrane potential (Vm) in HEK293 cells and in primary mouse β-cells. Intracellular OPN was also knocked down in β-cells to test its effect on β-cell TALK-1 channel activity. Reducing β-cell iOPN significantly decreased TALK-1 K+ currents and increased glucose-stimulated Ca2+ influx. Importantly, iOPN did not affect the function of other K2P channels or alter Ca2+ influx into TALK-1 deficient β-cells. These results reveal the first protein interactions with the TALK-1 channel and found that an interaction with iOPN increased β-cell TALK-1 K+ currents. The TALK-1/iOPN complex caused Vm hyperpolarization and reduced β-cell glucose-stimulated Ca2+ influx, which is predicted to inhibit GSIS.

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<![CDATA[Investigating CFTR and KCa3.1 Protein/Protein Interactions]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989d9fbab0ee8fa60b71daa

In epithelia, Cl- channels play a prominent role in fluid and electrolyte transport. Of particular importance is the cAMP-dependent cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator Cl- channel (CFTR) with mutations of the CFTR encoding gene causing cystic fibrosis. The bulk transepithelial transport of Cl- ions and electrolytes needs however to be coupled to an increase in K+ conductance in order to recycle K+ and maintain an electrical driving force for anion exit across the apical membrane. In several epithelia, this K+ efflux is ensured by K+ channels, including KCa3.1, which is expressed at both the apical and basolateral membranes. We show here for the first time that CFTR and KCa3.1 can physically interact. We first performed a two-hybrid screen to identify which KCa3.1 cytosolic domains might mediate an interaction with CFTR. Our results showed that both the N-terminal fragment M1-M40 of KCa3.1 and part of the KCa3.1 calmodulin binding domain (residues L345-A400) interact with the NBD2 segment (G1237-Y1420) and C- region of CFTR (residues T1387-L1480), respectively. An association of CFTR and F508del-CFTR with KCa3.1 was further confirmed in co-immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrating the formation of immunoprecipitable CFTR/KCa3.1 complexes in CFBE cells. Co-expression of KCa3.1 and CFTR in HEK cells did not impact CFTR expression at the cell surface, and KCa3.1 trafficking appeared independent of CFTR stimulation. Finally, evidence is presented through cross-correlation spectroscopy measurements that KCa3.1 and CFTR colocalize at the plasma membrane and that KCa3.1 channels tend to aggregate consequent to an enhanced interaction with CFTR channels at the plasma membrane following an increase in intracellular Ca2+ concentration. Altogether, these results suggest 1) that the physical interaction KCa3.1/CFTR can occur early during the biogenesis of both proteins and 2) that KCa3.1 and CFTR form a dynamic complex, the formation of which depends on internal Ca2+.

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<![CDATA[Mathematical model of Na-K-Cl homeostasis in ictal and interictal discharges]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c955230d5eed0c4846f30ea

Despite big experimental data on the phenomena and mechanisms of the generation of ictal and interictal discharges (IDs and IIDs), mathematical models that can describe the synaptic interactions of neurons and the ionic dynamics in biophysical detail are not well-established. Based on experimental recordings of combined hippocampal-entorhinal cortex slices from rats in a high-potassium and a low-magnesium solution containing 4-aminopyridine as well as previous observations of similar experimental models, this type of mathematical model has been developed. The model describes neuronal excitation through the application of the conductance-based refractory density approach for three neuronal populations: two populations of glutamatergic neurons with hyperpolarizing and depolarizing GABAergic synapses and one GABAergic population. The ionic dynamics account for the contributions of voltage-gated and synaptic channels, active and passive transporters, and diffusion. The relatively slow dynamics of potassium, chloride, and sodium ion concentrations determine the transitions from pure GABAergic IIDs to IDs and GABA-glutamatergic IIDs. The model reproduces different types of IIDs, including those initiated by interneurons; repetitive IDs; tonic and bursting modes of an ID composed of clustered IID-like events. The simulations revealed contributions from different ionic channels to the ion concentration dynamics before and during ID generation. The proposed model is a step forward to an optimal mathematical description of the mechanisms of epileptic discharges.

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<![CDATA[Retigabine, a Kv7.2/Kv7.3-Channel Opener, Attenuates Drug-Induced Seizures in Knock-In Mice Harboring Kcnq2 Mutations]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989db02ab0ee8fa60bc70f5

The hetero-tetrameric voltage-gated potassium channel Kv7.2/Kv7.3, which is encoded by KCNQ2 and KCNQ3, plays an important role in limiting network excitability in the neonatal brain. Kv7.2/Kv7.3 dysfunction resulting from KCNQ2 mutations predominantly causes self-limited or benign epilepsy in neonates, but also causes early onset epileptic encephalopathy. Retigabine (RTG), a Kv7.2/ Kv7.3-channel opener, seems to be a rational antiepileptic drug for epilepsies caused by KCNQ2 mutations. We therefore evaluated the effects of RTG on seizures in two strains of knock-in mice harboring different Kcnq2 mutations, in comparison to the effects of phenobarbital (PB), which is the first-line antiepileptic drug for seizures in neonates. The subjects were heterozygous knock-in mice (Kcnq2Y284C/+ and Kcnq2A306T/+) bearing the Y284C or A306T Kcnq2 mutation, respectively, and their wild-type (WT) littermates, at 63–100 days of age. Seizures induced by intraperitoneal injection of kainic acid (KA, 12mg/kg) were recorded using a video-electroencephalography (EEG) monitoring system. Effects of RTG on KA-induced seizures of both strains of knock-in mice were assessed using seizure scores from a modified Racine’s scale and compared with those of PB. The number and total duration of spike bursts on EEG and behaviors monitored by video recording were also used to evaluate the effects of RTG and PB. Both Kcnq2Y284C/+ and Kcnq2A306T/+ mice showed significantly more KA-induced seizures than WT mice. RTG significantly attenuated KA-induced seizure activities in both Kcnq2Y284C/+ and Kcnq2A306T/+ mice, and more markedly than PB. This is the first reported evidence of RTG ameliorating KA-induced seizures in knock-in mice bearing mutations of Kcnq2, with more marked effects than those observed with PB. RTG or other Kv7.2-channel openers may be considered as first-line antiepileptic treatments for epilepsies resulting from KCNQ2 mutations.

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<![CDATA[Action Potential Modulation in CA1 Pyramidal Neuron Axons Facilitates OLM Interneuron Activation in Recurrent Inhibitory Microcircuits of Rat Hippocampus]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dab9ab0ee8fa60baddf9

Oriens-lacunosum moleculare (O-LM) interneurons in the CA1 region of the hippocampus play a key role in feedback inhibition and in the control of network activity. However, how these cells are efficiently activated in the network remains unclear. To address this question, I performed recordings from CA1 pyramidal neuron axons, the presynaptic fibers that provide feedback innervation of these interneurons. Two forms of axonal action potential (AP) modulation were identified. First, repetitive stimulation resulted in activity-dependent AP broadening. Broadening showed fast onset, with marked changes in AP shape following a single AP. Second, tonic depolarization in CA1 pyramidal neuron somata induced AP broadening in the axon, and depolarization-induced broadening summated with activity-dependent broadening. Outside-out patch recordings from CA1 pyramidal neuron axons revealed a high density of α-dendrotoxin (α-DTX)-sensitive, inactivating K+ channels, suggesting that K+ channel inactivation mechanistically contributes to AP broadening. To examine the functional consequences of axonal AP modulation for synaptic transmission, I performed paired recordings between synaptically connected CA1 pyramidal neurons and O-LM interneurons. CA1 pyramidal neuron–O-LM interneuron excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) showed facilitation during both repetitive stimulation and tonic depolarization of the presynaptic neuron. Both effects were mimicked and occluded by α-DTX, suggesting that they were mediated by K+ channel inactivation. Therefore, axonal AP modulation can greatly facilitate the activation of O-LM interneurons. In conclusion, modulation of AP shape in CA1 pyramidal neuron axons substantially enhances the efficacy of principal neuron–interneuron synapses, promoting the activation of O-LM interneurons in recurrent inhibitory microcircuits.

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<![CDATA[Myocardial KChIP2 Expression in Guinea Pig Resolves an Expanded Electrophysiologic Role]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989dacfab0ee8fa60bb5b40

Cardiac ion channels and their respective accessory subunits are critical in maintaining proper electrical activity of the heart. Studies have indicated that the K+ channel interacting protein 2 (KChIP2), originally identified as an auxiliary subunit for the channel Kv4, a component of the transient outward K+ channel (Ito), is a Ca2+ binding protein whose regulatory function does not appear restricted to Kv4 modulation. Indeed, the guinea pig myocardium does not express Kv4, yet we show that it still maintains expression of KChIP2, suggesting roles for KChIP2 beyond this canonical auxiliary interaction with Kv4 to modulate Ito. In this study, we capitalize on the guinea pig as a system for investigating how KChIP2 influences the cardiac action potential, independent of effects otherwise attributed to Ito, given the endogenous absence of the current in this species. By performing whole cell patch clamp recordings on isolated adult guinea pig myocytes, we observe that knock down of KChIP2 significantly prolongs the cardiac action potential. This prolongation was not attributed to compromised repolarizing currents, as IKr and IKs were unchanged, but was the result of enhanced L-type Ca2+ current due to an increase in Cav1.2 protein. In addition, cells with reduced KChIP2 also displayed lowered INa from reduced Nav1.5 protein. Historically, rodent models have been used to investigate the role of KChIP2, where dramatic changes to the primary repolarizing current Ito may mask more subtle effects of KChIP2. Evaluation in the guinea pig where Ito is absent, has unveiled additional functions for KChIP2 beyond its canonical regulation of Ito, which defines KChIP2 as a master regulator of cardiac repolarization and depolarization.

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<![CDATA[Vascular Tone Regulation Induced by C-Type Natriuretic Peptide: Differences in Endothelium-Dependent and -Independent Mechanisms Involved in Normotensive and Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daebab0ee8fa60bbf282

Given that the role of C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP) in the regulation of vascular tone in hypertensive states is unclear, we hypothesized that impaired response of the nitric oxide system to CNP in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) could affect vascular relaxation induced by the peptide in this model of hypertension, and that other endothelial systems or potassium channels opening could also be involved. We examined the effect of CNP on isolated SHR aortas, and the hindlimb vascular resistance (HVR) in response to CNP administration compared to normotensive rats. Aortas were mounted in an isometric organ bath and contracted with phenylephrine. CNP relaxed arteries in a concentration-dependent manner but was less potent in inducing relaxation in SHR. The action of CNP was diminished by removal of the endothelium, inhibition of nitric oxide synthase by Nω-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester, and inhibition of soluble guanylyl cyclase by 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-alpha]quinoxalin-1-one in both groups. In contrast, blockade of cyclooxygenase or subtype 2 bradykinin receptor increased CNP potency only in SHR. In both Wistar and SHR, CNP relaxation was blunted by tetraethylammonium and partially inhibited by BaCl2 and iberiotoxin, indicating that it was due to opening of the Kir and BKCa channels. However, SHR seem to be more sensitive to Kir channel blockade and less sensitive to BKCa channel blockade than normotensive rats. In addition, CNP decreases HVR in Wistar and SHR, but the effect of CNP increasing blood flow was more marked in SHR. We conclude that CNP induces aorta relaxation by activation of the nitric oxide system and opening of potassium channels, but the response to the peptide is impaired in conductance vessel of hypertensive rats.

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