Science.gov

Sample records for ion channel density

  1. Traveling ion channel density waves affected by a conservation law.

    PubMed

    Peter, Ronny; Zimmermann, Walter

    2006-07-01

    A model of mobile, charged ion channels embedded in a biomembrane is investigated. The ion channels fluctuate between an opened and a closed state according to a simple two-state reaction scheme whereas the total number of ion channels is a conserved quantity. Local transport mechanisms suggest that the ion channel densities are governed by electrodiffusionlike equations that have to be supplemented by a cable-type equation describing the dynamics of the transmembrane voltage. It is shown that the homogeneous distribution of ion channels may become unstable to either a stationary or an oscillatory instability. The nonlinear behavior immediately above threshold of an oscillatory bifurcation occurring at finite wave number is analyzed in terms of amplitude equations. Due to the conservation law imposed on ion channels, large-scale modes couple to the finite-wave-number instability and have thus to be included in the asymptotic analysis near the onset of pattern formation. A modified Ginzburg-Landau equation extended by long-wavelength stationary excitations is established, and it is highlighted how the global conservation law affects the stability of traveling ion channel density waves.

  2. Step density model of laser sustained ion channel and Coulomb explosion

    SciTech Connect

    Rajouria, Satish Kumar; Malik, H. K.; Tripathi, V. K.; Kumar, Pawan

    2015-02-15

    An analytical model of laser sustained ion channel in plasma is developed, assuming electron density to be zero in the inner region and constant outside. The radius of the channel is such that the ponderomotive force on electrons at the channel boundary is balanced by the channel space charge force. The laser is TM eigen mode of the system with Bessel function profile in the interior and modified Bessel function outside. The channel radius increases with laser intensity and the ratio of laser frequency to plasma frequency. Ion Coulomb explosion of the channel, on longer time scale, produces ion energy distribution, an increasing function of energy with a sharp cutoff equal to electron ponderomotive energy at the channel boundary. At peak laser intensity ≈2×10{sup 19}W/cm{sup 2} at 1 μm wavelength and spot size of 8 μm, the cutoff ion energy in a plasma of density ∼10{sup 19}cm{sup −3} is ∼0.73 MeV.

  3. Hexagonal, square, and stripe patterns of the ion channel density in biomembranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hilt, Markus; Zimmermann, Walter

    2007-01-01

    Transmembrane ion flow through channel proteins undergoing density fluctuations may cause lateral gradients of the electrical potential across the membrane giving rise to electrophoresis of charged channels. A model for the dynamics of the channel density and the voltage drop across the membrane (cable equation) coupled to a binding-release reaction with the cell skeleton [P. Fromherz and W. Zimmerman, Phys. Rev. E 51, R1659 (1995)] is analyzed in one and two spatial dimensions. Due to the binding release reaction spatially periodic modulations of the channel density with a finite wave number are favored at the onset of pattern formation, whereby the wave number decreases with the kinetic rate of the binding-release reaction. In a two-dimensional extended membrane hexagonal modulations of the ion channel density are preferred in a large range of parameters. The stability diagrams of the periodic patterns near threshold are calculated and in addition the equations of motion in the limit of a slow binding-release kinetics are derived.

  4. Density-functional theory study of gramicidin A ion channel geometry and electronic properties.

    PubMed

    Todorović, Milica; Bowler, David R; Gillan, Michael J; Miyazaki, Tsuyoshi

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the mechanisms underlying ion channel function from the atomic-scale requires accurate ab initio modelling as well as careful experiments. Here, we present a density functional theory (DFT) study of the ion channel gramicidin A (gA), whose inner pore conducts only monovalent cations and whose conductance has been shown to depend on the side chains of the amino acids in the channel. We investigate the ground state geometry and electronic properties of the channel in vacuum, focusing on their dependence on the side chains of the amino acids. We find that the side chains affect the ground state geometry, while the electrostatic potential of the pore is independent of the side chains. This study is also in preparation for a full, linear scaling DFT study of gA in a lipid bilayer with surrounding water. We demonstrate that linear scaling DFT methods can accurately model the system with reasonable computational cost. Linear scaling DFT allows ab initio calculations with 10,000-100,000 atoms and beyond, and will be an important new tool for biomolecular simulations.

  5. Cardiac ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Priest, Birgit T; McDermott, Jeff S

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels are critical for all aspects of cardiac function, including rhythmicity and contractility. Consequently, ion channels are key targets for therapeutics aimed at cardiac pathophysiologies such as atrial fibrillation or angina. At the same time, off-target interactions of drugs with cardiac ion channels can be the cause of unwanted side effects. This manuscript aims to review the physiology and pharmacology of key cardiac ion channels. The intent is to highlight recent developments for therapeutic development, as well as elucidate potential mechanisms for drug-induced cardiac side effects, rather than present an in-depth review of each channel subtype. PMID:26556552

  6. Mechanically Activated Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Ranade, Sanjeev S.; Syeda, Ruhma; Patapoutian, Ardem

    2015-01-01

    Mechanotransduction, the conversion of physical forces into biochemical signals, is an essential component of numerous physiological processes including not only conscious senses of touch and hearing, but also unconscious senses such as blood pressure regulation. Mechanically activated (MA) ion channels have been proposed as sensors of physical force, but the identity of these channels and an understanding of how mechanical force is transduced has remained elusive. A number of recent studies on previously known ion channels along with the identification of novel MA ion channels have greatly transformed our understanding of touch and hearing in both vertebrates and invertebrates. Here, we present an updated review of eukaryotic ion channel families that have been implicated in mechanotransduction processes and evaluate the qualifications of the candidate genes according to specified criteria. We then discuss the proposed gating models for MA ion channels and highlight recent structural studies of mechanosensitive potassium channels. PMID:26402601

  7. Ion channels and cancer.

    PubMed

    Kunzelmann, Karl

    2005-06-01

    Membrane ion channels are essential for cell proliferation and appear to have a role in the development of cancer. This has initially been demonstrated for potassium channels and is meanwhile also suggested for other cation channels and Cl- channels. For some of these channels, like voltage-gated ether à go-go and Ca2+-dependent potassium channels as well as calcium and chloride channels, a cell cycle-dependent function has been demonstrated. Along with other membrane conductances, these channels control the membrane voltage and Ca2+ signaling in proliferating cells. Homeostatic parameters, such as the intracellular ion concentration, cytosolic pH and cell volume, are also governed by the activity of ion channels. Thus it will be an essential task for future studies to unravel cell cycle-specific effects of ion channels and non-specific homeostatic functions. When studying the role of ion channels in cancer cells, it is indispensable to choose experimental conditions that come close to the in vivo situation. Thus, environmental parameters, such as low oxygen pressure, acidosis and exposure to serum proteins, have to be taken into account. In order to achieve clinical application, more studies on the original cancer tissue are required, and improved animal models. Finally, it will be essential to generate more potent and specific inhibitors of ion channels to overcome the shortcomings of some of the current approaches.

  8. Cholesterol and Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Levitan, Irena; Fang, Yun; Rosenhouse-Dantsker, Avia; Romanenko, Victor

    2010-01-01

    A variety of ion channels, including members of all major ion channel families, have been shown to be regulated by changes in the level of membrane cholesterol and partition into cholesterol-rich membrane domains. In general, several types of cholesterol effects have been described. The most common effect is suppression of channel activity by an increase in membrane cholesterol, an effect that was described for several types of inwardly-rectifying K+ channels, voltage-gated K+ channels, Ca+2 sensitive K+ channels, voltage-gated Na+ channels, N-type voltage-gated Ca+2 channels and volume-regulated anion channels. In contrast, several types of ion channels, such as epithelial amiloride-sensitive Na+ channels and Transient Receptor Potential channels, as well as some of the types of inwardly-rectifying and voltage-gated K+ channels were shown to be inhibited by cholesterol depletion. Cholesterol was also shown to alter the kinetic properties and current-voltage dependence of several voltage-gated channels. Finally, maintaining membrane cholesterol level is required for coupling ion channels to signalling cascades. In terms of the mechanisms, three general mechanisms have been proposed: (i) specific interactions between cholesterol and the channel protein, (ii) changes in the physical properties of the membrane bilayer and (iii) maintaining the scaffolds for protein-protein interactions. The goal of this review is to describe systematically the role of cholesterol in regulation of the major types of ion channels and to discuss these effects in the context of the models proposed. PMID:20213557

  9. Phosphoinositides regulate ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Hille, Bertil; Dickson, Eamonn J.; Kruse, Martin; Vivas, Oscar; Suh, Byung-Chang

    2014-01-01

    Phosphoinositides serve as signature motifs for different cellular membranes and often are required for the function of membrane proteins. Here, we summarize clear evidence supporting the concept that many ion channels are regulated by membrane phosphoinositides. We describe tools used to test their dependence on phosphoinositides, especially phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate, and consider mechanisms and biological meanings of phosphoinositide regulation of ion channels. This lipid regulation can underlie changes of channel activity and electrical excitability in response to receptors. Since different intracellular membranes have different lipid compositions, the activity of ion channels still in transit towards their final destination membrane may be suppressed until they reach an optimal lipid environment. PMID:25241941

  10. Ion channels in microbes

    PubMed Central

    Martinac, Boris; Saimi, Yoshiro; Kung, Ching

    2008-01-01

    Summary Studies of ion channels have for long been dominated by the animalcentric, if not anthropocentric view of physiology. The structures and activities of ion channels had, however, evolved long before the appearance of complex multicellular organisms on Earth. The diversity of ion channels existing in cellular membranes of prokaryotes is a good example. Though at first it may appear as a paradox that most of what we know about the structure of eukaryotic ion channels is based on the structure of bacterial channels, this should not be surprising given the evolutionary relatedness of all living organisms and suitability of microbial cells for structural studies of biological macromolecules in a laboratory environment. Genome sequences of the human as well as various microbial, plant and animal organisms unambiguously established the evolutionary links, whereas crystallographic studies of the structures of major types of ion channels published over the last decade clearly demonstrated the advantage of using microbes as experimental organisms. The purpose of this review is not only to provide an account of acquired knowledge on microbial ion channels but also to show that the study of microbes and their ion channels may also hold a key to solving unresolved molecular mysteries in the future. PMID:18923187

  11. Ion channels in plants

    PubMed Central

    Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    In his recent opus magnum review paper published in the October issue of Physiology Reviews, Rainer Hedrich summarized the field of plant ion channels.1 He started from the earliest electric recordings initiated by Charles Darwin of carnivorous Dionaea muscipula,1,2 known as Venus flytrap, and covered the topic extensively up to the most recent discoveries on Shaker-type potassium channels, anion channels of SLAC/SLAH families, and ligand-activated channels of glutamate receptor-like type (GLR) and cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGC).1 PMID:23221742

  12. Negative Ion Density Fronts

    SciTech Connect

    Igor Kaganovich

    2000-12-18

    Negative ions tend to stratify in electronegative plasmas with hot electrons (electron temperature Te much larger than ion temperature Ti, Te > Ti ). The boundary separating a plasma containing negative ions, and a plasma, without negative ions, is usually thin, so that the negative ion density falls rapidly to zero-forming a negative ion density front. We review theoretical, experimental and numerical results giving the spatio-temporal evolution of negative ion density fronts during plasma ignition, the steady state, and extinction (afterglow). During plasma ignition, negative ion fronts are the result of the break of smooth plasma density profiles during nonlinear convection. In a steady-state plasma, the fronts are boundary layers with steepening of ion density profiles due to nonlinear convection also. But during plasma extinction, the ion fronts are of a completely different nature. Negative ions diffuse freely in the plasma core (no convection), whereas the negative ion front propagates towards the chamber walls with a nearly constant velocity. The concept of fronts turns out to be very effective in analysis of plasma density profile evolution in strongly non-isothermal plasmas.

  13. Ion channeling revisited

    SciTech Connect

    Doyle, Barney Lee; Corona, Aldo; Nguyen, Anh

    2014-09-01

    A MS Excel program has been written that calculates accidental, or unintentional, ion channeling in cubic bcc, fcc and diamond lattice crystals or polycrystalline materials. This becomes an important issue when simulating the creation by energetic neutrons of point displacement damage and extended defects using beams of ions. All of the tables and graphs in the three Ion Beam Analysis Handbooks that previously had to be manually looked up and read from were programed into Excel in handy lookup tables, or parameterized, for the case of the graphs, using rather simple exponential functions with different powers of the argument. The program then offers an extremely convenient way to calculate axial and planar half-angles and minimum yield or dechanneling probabilities, effects on half-angles of amorphous overlayers, accidental channeling probabilities for randomly oriented crystals or crystallites, and finally a way to automatically generate stereographic projections of axial and planar channeling half-angles. The program can generate these projections and calculate these probabilities for axes and [hkl] planes up to (555).

  14. Ion Channels in Epithelial Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palmer, Lawrence G.

    Ion channels in epithelial cells serve to move ions, and in some cases fluid, between compartments of the body. This function of the transfer of material is fundamentally different from that of the transfer of information, which is the main job of most channels in excitable cells. Nevertheless the basic construction of the channels is similar in many respects in the two tissue types. This chapter reviews the nature of channels in epithelia and discusses how their functions have evolved to accomplish the basic tasks for which they are responsible. I will focus on three channel types: epithelial Na+ channels, inward-rectifier K+ channels, and CFTR Cl- channels.

  15. Ion channel therapeutics for pain

    PubMed Central

    Skerratt, Sarah E; West, Christopher W

    2015-01-01

    Pain is a complex disease which can progress into a debilitating condition. The effective treatment of pain remains a challenge as current therapies often lack the desired level of efficacy or tolerability. One therapeutic avenue, the modulation of ion channel signaling by small molecules, has shown the ability to treat pain. However, of the 215 ion channels that exist in the human genome, with 85 ion channels having a strong literature link to pain, only a small number of these channels have been successfully drugged for pain. The focus of future research will be to fully explore the possibilities surrounding these unexplored ion channels. Toward this end, a greater understanding of ion channel modulation will be the greatest tool we have in developing the next generation of drugs for the treatment of pain. PMID:26218246

  16. Coupled-channels quantum theory of electronic flux density in electronically adiabatic processes: application to the hydrogen molecule ion.

    PubMed

    Diestler, D J; Kenfack, A; Manz, J; Paulus, B

    2012-03-22

    This article presents the results of the first quantum simulations of the electronic flux density (j(e)) by the "coupled-channels" (CC) theory, the fundamentals of which are presented in the previous article [Diestler, D. J. J. Phys. Chem. A 2012, DOI: 10.1021/jp207843z]. The principal advantage of the CC scheme is that it employs exclusively standard methods of quantum chemistry and quantum dynamics within the framework of the Born-Oppenheimer approximation (BOA). The CC theory goes beyond the BOA in that it yields a nonzero j(e) for electronically adiabatic processes, in contradistinction to the BOA itself, which always gives j(e) = 0. The CC is applied to oriented H(2)(+) vibrating in the electronic ground state ((2)Σ(g)(+)), for which the nuclear and electronic flux densities evolve on a common time scale of about 22 fs per vibrational period. The system is chosen as a touchstone for the CC theory, because it is the only one for which highly accurate flux densities have been calculated numerically without invoking the BOA [Barth et al, Chem. Phys. Lett. 2009, 481, 118]. Good agreement between CC and accurate results supports the CC approach, another advantage of which is that it allows a transparent interpretation of the temporal and spatial properties of j(e).

  17. Cholesterol binding to ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Levitan, Irena; Singh, Dev K.; Rosenhouse-Dantsker, Avia

    2014-01-01

    Numerous studies demonstrated that membrane cholesterol is a major regulator of ion channel function. The goal of this review is to discuss significant advances that have been recently achieved in elucidating the mechanisms responsible for cholesterol regulation of ion channels. The first major insight that comes from growing number of studies that based on the sterol specificity of cholesterol effects, show that several types of ion channels (nAChR, Kir, BK, TRPV) are regulated by specific sterol-protein interactions. This conclusion is supported by demonstrating direct saturable binding of cholesterol to a bacterial Kir channel. The second major advance in the field is the identification of putative cholesterol binding sites in several types of ion channels. These include sites at locations associated with the well-known cholesterol binding motif CRAC and its reversed form CARC in nAChR, BK, and TRPV, as well as novel cholesterol binding regions in Kir channels. Notably, in the majority of these channels, cholesterol is suggested to interact mainly with hydrophobic residues in non-annular regions of the channels being embedded in between transmembrane protein helices. We also discuss how identification of putative cholesterol binding sites is an essential step to understand the mechanistic basis of cholesterol-induced channel regulation. Clearly, however, these are only the first few steps in obtaining a general understanding of cholesterol-ion channels interactions and their roles in cellular and organ functions. PMID:24616704

  18. Ultrasound modulates ion channel currents.

    PubMed

    Kubanek, Jan; Shi, Jingyi; Marsh, Jon; Chen, Di; Deng, Cheri; Cui, Jianmin

    2016-01-01

    Transcranial focused ultrasound (US) has been demonstrated to stimulate neurons in animals and humans, but the mechanism of this effect is unknown. It has been hypothesized that US, a mechanical stimulus, may mediate cellular discharge by activating mechanosensitive ion channels embedded within cellular membranes. To test this hypothesis, we expressed potassium and sodium mechanosensitive ion channels (channels of the two-pore-domain potassium family (K2P) including TREK-1, TREK-2, TRAAK; NaV1.5) in the Xenopus oocyte system. Focused US (10 MHz, 0.3-4.9 W/cm(2)) modulated the currents flowing through the ion channels on average by up to 23%, depending on channel and stimulus intensity. The effects were reversible upon repeated stimulation and were abolished when a channel blocker (ranolazine to block NaV1.5, BaCl2 to block K2P channels) was applied to the solution. These data reveal at the single cell level that focused US modulates the activity of specific ion channels to mediate transmembrane currents. These findings open doors to investigations of the effects of  US on ion channels expressed in neurons, retinal cells, or cardiac cells, which may lead to important medical applications. The findings may also pave the way to the development of sonogenetics: a non-invasive, US-based analogue of optogenetics. PMID:27112990

  19. Ultrasound modulates ion channel currents

    PubMed Central

    Kubanek, Jan; Shi, Jingyi; Marsh, Jon; Chen, Di; Deng, Cheri; Cui, Jianmin

    2016-01-01

    Transcranial focused ultrasound (US) has been demonstrated to stimulate neurons in animals and humans, but the mechanism of this effect is unknown. It has been hypothesized that US, a mechanical stimulus, may mediate cellular discharge by activating mechanosensitive ion channels embedded within cellular membranes. To test this hypothesis, we expressed potassium and sodium mechanosensitive ion channels (channels of the two-pore-domain potassium family (K2P) including TREK-1, TREK-2, TRAAK; NaV1.5) in the Xenopus oocyte system. Focused US (10 MHz, 0.3–4.9 W/cm2) modulated the currents flowing through the ion channels on average by up to 23%, depending on channel and stimulus intensity. The effects were reversible upon repeated stimulation and were abolished when a channel blocker (ranolazine to block NaV1.5, BaCl2 to block K2P channels) was applied to the solution. These data reveal at the single cell level that focused US modulates the activity of specific ion channels to mediate transmembrane currents. These findings open doors to investigations of the effects of  US on ion channels expressed in neurons, retinal cells, or cardiac cells, which may lead to important medical applications. The findings may also pave the way to the development of sonogenetics: a non-invasive, US-based analogue of optogenetics. PMID:27112990

  20. Ion Channels in Nerve Membranes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ehrenstein, Gerald

    1976-01-01

    Discusses research that indicates that nerve membranes, which play a key role in the conduction of impulses, are traversed by protein channels with ion pathways opened and closed by the membrane electric field. (Author/MLH)

  1. Ion channel screening technologies today.

    PubMed

    Terstappen, Georg C

    2005-01-01

    For every heartbeat, movement and thought, ion channels have to open and close, and thus, it is not surprising that malfunctioning of these membrane proteins leads to serious diseases. Today, only 7% of all marketed drugs act on ion channels but the systematic exploitation of this important target class has started mainly enabled by novel screening technologies. Thus, the discovery of selective and state-dependent drugs is on the horizon, hopefully leading to effective novel medicines.:

  2. Marine Toxins Targeting Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Arias, Hugo R.

    2006-01-01

    This introductory minireview points out the importance of ion channels for cell communication. The basic concepts on the structure and function of ion channels triggered by membrane voltage changes, the so-called voltage-gated ion channels (VGICs), as well as those activated by neurotransmitters, the so-called ligand-gated ion channel (LGICs), are introduced. Among the most important VGIC superfamiles, we can name the voltage-gated Na+ (NaV), Ca2+ (CaV), and K+ (KV) channels. Among the most important LGIC super families, we can include the Cys-loop or nicotinicoid, the glutamate-activated (GluR), and the ATP-activated (P2XnR) receptor superfamilies. Ion channels are transmembrane proteins that allow the passage of different ions in a specific or unspecific manner. For instance, the activation of NaV, CaV, or KV channels opens a pore that is specific for Na+, Ca2+, or K+, respectively. On the other hand, the activation of certain LGICs such as nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, GluRs, and P2XnRs allows the passage of cations (e.g., Na+, K+, and/or Ca2+), whereas the activation of other LGICs such as type A γ-butyric acid and glycine receptors allows the passage of anions (e.g., Cl− and/or HCO3−). In this regard, the activation of NaV and CaV as well as ligand-gated cation channels produce membrane depolarization, which finally leads to stimulatory effects in the cell, whereas the activation of KV as well as ligand-gated anion channels induce membrane hyperpolarization that finally leads to inhibitory effects in the cell. The importance of these ion channel superfamilies is emphasized by considering their physiological functions throughout the body as well as their pathophysiological implicance in several neuronal diseases. In this regard, natural molecules, and especially marine toxins, can be potentially used as modulators (e.g., inhibitors or prolongers) of ion channel functions to treat or to alleviate a specific ion channel-linked disease (e

  3. Ion Channels in Brain Metastasis

    PubMed Central

    Klumpp, Lukas; Sezgin, Efe C.; Eckert, Franziska; Huber, Stephan M.

    2016-01-01

    Breast cancer, lung cancer and melanoma exhibit a high metastatic tropism to the brain. Development of brain metastases severely worsens the prognosis of cancer patients and constrains curative treatment options. Metastasizing to the brain by cancer cells can be dissected in consecutive processes including epithelial–mesenchymal transition, evasion from the primary tumor, intravasation and circulation in the blood, extravasation across the blood–brain barrier, formation of metastatic niches, and colonization in the brain. Ion channels have been demonstrated to be aberrantly expressed in tumor cells where they regulate neoplastic transformation, malignant progression or therapy resistance. Moreover, many ion channel modulators are FDA-approved drugs and in clinical use proposing ion channels as druggable targets for future anti-cancer therapy. The present review article aims to summarize the current knowledge on the function of ion channels in the different processes of brain metastasis. The data suggest that certain channel types involving voltage-gated sodium channels, ATP-release channels, ionotropic neurotransmitter receptors and gap junction-generating connexins interfere with distinct processes of brain metastazation. PMID:27618016

  4. Ion Channels in Brain Metastasis.

    PubMed

    Klumpp, Lukas; Sezgin, Efe C; Eckert, Franziska; Huber, Stephan M

    2016-01-01

    Breast cancer, lung cancer and melanoma exhibit a high metastatic tropism to the brain. Development of brain metastases severely worsens the prognosis of cancer patients and constrains curative treatment options. Metastasizing to the brain by cancer cells can be dissected in consecutive processes including epithelial-mesenchymal transition, evasion from the primary tumor, intravasation and circulation in the blood, extravasation across the blood-brain barrier, formation of metastatic niches, and colonization in the brain. Ion channels have been demonstrated to be aberrantly expressed in tumor cells where they regulate neoplastic transformation, malignant progression or therapy resistance. Moreover, many ion channel modulators are FDA-approved drugs and in clinical use proposing ion channels as druggable targets for future anti-cancer therapy. The present review article aims to summarize the current knowledge on the function of ion channels in the different processes of brain metastasis. The data suggest that certain channel types involving voltage-gated sodium channels, ATP-release channels, ionotropic neurotransmitter receptors and gap junction-generating connexins interfere with distinct processes of brain metastazation. PMID:27618016

  5. Demystifying Mechanosensitive Piezo Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Xu, X Z Shawn

    2016-06-01

    Mechanosensitive channels mediate touch, hearing, proprioception, and blood pressure regulation. Piezo proteins, including Piezo1 and Piezo2, represent a new class of mechanosensitive channels that have been reported to play key roles in most, if not all, of these modalities. The structural architecture and molecular mechanisms by which Piezos act as mechanosensitive channels, however, remain mysterious. Two new studies have now provided critical insights into the atomic structure and molecular basis of the ion permeation and mechano-gating properties of the Piezo1 channel.

  6. Microbial Senses and Ion Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kung, Ching; Zhou, Xin-Liang; Su, Zhen-Wei; Haynes, W. John; Loukin, Sephan H.; Saimi, Yoshiro

    The complexity of animals and plants is due largely to cellular arrangement. The structures and activities of macromolecules had, however, evolved in early microbes long before the appearance of this complexity. Among such molecules are those that sense light, heat, force, water, and ligands. Though historically and didactically associated with the nervous system, ion channels also have deep evolutionary roots. For example, force sensing with channels, which likely began as water sensing through membrane stretch generated by osmotic pressure, must be ancient and is universal in extant species. Extant microbial species, such as the model bacterium Escherichia coli and yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, are equipped with stretch-activated channels. The ion channel proteins MscL and MscS show clearly that these bacterial channels receive stretch forces from the lipid bilayer. TRPY1, the mechanosensitive channel in yeast, is being developed towards a similar basic understanding of channels of the TRP (transientreceptor- potential) superfamily. TRPY1 resides in the vacuolar membrane and releases Ca2+ from the vacuole to the cytoplasm upon hyperosmotic shock. Unlike in most TRP preparations from animals, the mechanosensitivity of TRPY1 can be examined directly under patch clamp in either whole-vacuole mode or excised patch mode. The combination of direct biophysical examination in vitro with powerful microbial genetics in vivo should complement the study of mechanosensations of complex animals and plants.

  7. Improvement in fusion reactor performance due to ion channeling

    SciTech Connect

    Emmert, G.A.; El-Guebaly, L.A.; Kulcinski, G.L.; Santarius, J.F.; Sviatoslavsky, I.N.; Meade, D.M.

    1994-11-01

    Ion channeling is a recent idea for improving the performance of fusion reactors by increasing the fraction of the fusion power deposited in the ions. In this paper the authors assess the effect of ion channeling on D-T and D-{sup 3}He reactors. The figures of merit used are the fusion power density and the cost of electricity. It is seen that significant ion channeling can lead to about a 50-65% increase in the fusion power density. For the Apollo D-{sup 3}He reactor concept the reduction in the cost of electricity can be as large as 30%.

  8. A Latin American Perspective on Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Elgoyhen, Ana Belén; Barajas-López, Carlos

    2016-09-01

    Ion channels, both ligand- and voltage-gated, play fundamental roles in many physiologic processes. Alteration in ion channel function underlies numerous pathologies, including hypertension, diabetes, chronic pain, epilepsy, certain cancers, and neuromuscular diseases. In addition, an increasing number of inherited and de novo ion channel mutations have been shown to contribute to disease states. Ion channels are thus a major class of pharmacotherapeutic targets. PMID:27535998

  9. A Latin American Perspective on Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Elgoyhen, Ana Belén; Barajas-López, Carlos

    2016-09-01

    Ion channels, both ligand- and voltage-gated, play fundamental roles in many physiologic processes. Alteration in ion channel function underlies numerous pathologies, including hypertension, diabetes, chronic pain, epilepsy, certain cancers, and neuromuscular diseases. In addition, an increasing number of inherited and de novo ion channel mutations have been shown to contribute to disease states. Ion channels are thus a major class of pharmacotherapeutic targets.

  10. Ion channels meet auxin action.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, I; Philippar, K; Hedrich, R

    2006-05-01

    The regulation of cell division and elongation in plants is accomplished by the action of different phytohormones. Auxin as one of these growth regulators is known to stimulate cell elongation growth in the aerial parts of the plant. Here, auxin enhances cell enlargement by increasing the extensibility of the cell wall and by facilitating the uptake of osmolytes such as potassium ions into the cell. Starting in the late 1990s, the auxin regulation of ion channels mediating K+ import into the cell has been studied in great detail. In this article we will focus on the molecular mechanisms underlying the modulation of K+ transport by auxin and present a model to explain how the regulation of K+ channels is involved in auxin-induced cell elongation growth. PMID:16807828

  11. Ion channels in analgesia research.

    PubMed

    Rosenbaum, Tamara; Simon, Sidney A; Islas, Leon D

    2010-01-01

    Several recent techniques have allowed us to pinpoint the receptors responsible for the detection of nociceptive stimuli. Among these receptors, ion channels play a fundamental role in the recognition and transduction of stimuli that can cause pain. During the last decade, compelling evidence has been gathered on the role of the TRPV1 channel in inflammatory and neuropathic states. Activation of TRPV1 in nociceptive neurons results in the release of neuropeptides and transmitters, leading to the generation of action potentials that will be sent to higher CNS areas, where they will often be perceived as pain. Its activation will also evoke the peripheral release of pro-inflammatory compounds that may sensitize other neurons to physical, thermal, or chemical stimuli. For these reasons, and because its continuous activation causes analgesia, TRPV1 is now considered a viable drug target for clinical use in the management of pain. Using the TRPV1 channel as an example, here we describe some basic biophysical approaches used to study the properties of ion channels involved in pain and in analgesia.

  12. Validation of ion channel targets.

    PubMed

    Gerlach, Aaron C; Antonio, Brett M

    2015-01-01

    A prerequisite for a successful target-based drug discovery program is a robust data set that increases confidence in the validation of the molecular target and the therapeutic approach. Given the significant time and resource investment required to carry a drug to market, early selection of targets that can be modulated safely and effectively forms the basis for a strong portfolio and pipeline. In this article we present some of the more useful scientific approaches that can be applied toward the validation of ion channel targets, a molecular family with a history of clinical success in therapeutic areas such as cardiovascular, respiratory, pain and neuroscience.

  13. High throughput screening technologies for ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Hai-bo; Li, Min; Wang, Wei-ping; Wang, Xiao-liang

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels are involved in a variety of fundamental physiological processes, and their malfunction causes numerous human diseases. Therefore, ion channels represent a class of attractive drug targets and a class of important off-targets for in vitro pharmacological profiling. In the past decades, the rapid progress in developing functional assays and instrumentation has enabled high throughput screening (HTS) campaigns on an expanding list of channel types. Chronologically, HTS methods for ion channels include the ligand binding assay, flux-based assay, fluorescence-based assay, and automated electrophysiological assay. In this review we summarize the current HTS technologies for different ion channel classes and their applications. PMID:26657056

  14. Simulations of ion channels--watching ions and water move.

    PubMed

    Sansom, M S; Shrivastava, I H; Ranatunga, K M; Smith, G R

    2000-08-01

    Ion channels mediate electrical excitability in neurons and muscle. Three-dimensional structures for model peptide channels and for a potassium (K+) channel have been combined with computer simulations to permit rigorous exploration of structure-function relations of channels. Water molecules and ions within transbilayer pores tend to diffuse more slowly than in bulk solutions. In the narrow selectivity filter of the bacterial K+ channel (i.e. the region of the channel that discriminates between different species of ions) a column of water molecules and K+ ions moves in a concerted fashion. By combining atomistic simulations (in which all atoms of the channel molecule, water and ions are treated explicitly) with continuum methods (in which the description of the channel system is considerably simplified) it is possible to simulate some of the physiological properties of channels.

  15. Ion Channel Engineering: Perspectives and Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Subramanyam, Prakash; Colecraft, Henry M.

    2014-01-01

    Ion channels facilitate the passive movement of ions down an electrochemical gradient and across lipid bilayers in cells. This phenomenon is essential for life, and underlies many critical homeostatic processes in cells. Ion channels are diverse and differ with respect to how they open and close (gating), and their ionic conductance/selectivity (permeation). Fundamental understanding of ion channel structure-function mechanisms, their physiological roles, how their dysfunction leads to disease, their utility as biosensors, and development of novel molecules to modulate their activity are important and active research frontiers. In this review, we focus on ion-channel engineering approaches that have been applied to investigate these aspects of ion channel function, with a major emphasis on voltage-gated ion channels. PMID:25205552

  16. Ion selectivity in the ryanodine receptor and other calcium channels.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillespie, Dirk

    2006-03-01

    Biological ion channels passively conduct ions across cell membranes, some with great specificity. Calcium channels are selective channels that range in their Ca^2+ affinity depending on the channel's physiological role. For example, the L-type calcium channel has micromolar affinity while the ryanodine receptor (RyR) has millimolar affinity. On the other hand, both of these channels have the chemically-similar EEEE and DDDD amino acid motifs in their selectivity filters. An electrodiffusion model of RyR that reproduces and predicts >50 data curves will be presented. In this model, ions are charged, hard spheres and the chemical potential is computed using density functional theory of fluids. Ion selectivity arises from a competition between the need for cations to screen the negative charges of the channel and the crowding of ions in the tiny space of the channel. Charge/space competition implies that selectivity increases as the channel volume decreases (thereby increasing the protein charge density), something that has recently been experimentally confirmed in mutant channels. Dielectric properties can also increase selectivity. In Monte Carlo simulations, Ca^2+ affinity is much higher when the channel protein has a low dielectric constant. This counterintuitive result occurs because calcium channel selectivity filters are lined with negatively-charged (acidic) amino acids (EEEE or DDDD). These permanent negative charges induce negative polarization charge at the protein/lumen interface. The total negative charge of the protein (polarization plus permanent) is increased, resulting in increased ion densities, increased charge/space competition, and there in increased Ca^2+ affinity. If no negative protein charges were present, cations would induce enough positive polarization charge to prevent flux.

  17. ICEPO: the ion channel electrophysiology ontology

    PubMed Central

    Hinard, V.; Britan, A.; Rougier, J.S.; Bairoch, A.; Abriel, H.; Gaudet, P.

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels are transmembrane proteins that selectively allow ions to flow across the plasma membrane and play key roles in diverse biological processes. A multitude of diseases, called channelopathies, such as epilepsies, muscle paralysis, pain syndromes, cardiac arrhythmias or hypoglycemia are due to ion channel mutations. A wide corpus of literature is available on ion channels, covering both their functions and their roles in disease. The research community needs to access this data in a user-friendly, yet systematic manner. However, extraction and integration of this increasing amount of data have been proven to be difficult because of the lack of a standardized vocabulary that describes the properties of ion channels at the molecular level. To address this, we have developed Ion Channel ElectroPhysiology Ontology (ICEPO), an ontology that allows one to annotate the electrophysiological parameters of the voltage-gated class of ion channels. This ontology is based on a three-state model of ion channel gating describing the three conformations/states that an ion channel can adopt: closed, open and inactivated. This ontology supports the capture of voltage-gated ion channel electrophysiological data from the literature in a structured manner and thus enables other applications such as querying and reasoning tools. Here, we present ICEPO (ICEPO ftp site: ftp://ftp.nextprot.org/pub/current_release/controlled_vocabularies/), as well as examples of its use. PMID:27055825

  18. ICEPO: the ion channel electrophysiology ontology.

    PubMed

    Hinard, V; Britan, A; Rougier, J S; Bairoch, A; Abriel, H; Gaudet, P

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels are transmembrane proteins that selectively allow ions to flow across the plasma membrane and play key roles in diverse biological processes. A multitude of diseases, called channelopathies, such as epilepsies, muscle paralysis, pain syndromes, cardiac arrhythmias or hypoglycemia are due to ion channel mutations. A wide corpus of literature is available on ion channels, covering both their functions and their roles in disease. The research community needs to access this data in a user-friendly, yet systematic manner. However, extraction and integration of this increasing amount of data have been proven to be difficult because of the lack of a standardized vocabulary that describes the properties of ion channels at the molecular level. To address this, we have developed Ion Channel ElectroPhysiology Ontology (ICEPO), an ontology that allows one to annotate the electrophysiological parameters of the voltage-gated class of ion channels. This ontology is based on a three-state model of ion channel gating describing the three conformations/states that an ion channel can adopt: closed, open and inactivated. This ontology supports the capture of voltage-gated ion channel electrophysiological data from the literature in a structured manner and thus enables other applications such as querying and reasoning tools. Here, we present ICEPO (ICEPO ftp site:ftp://ftp.nextprot.org/pub/current_release/controlled_vocabularies/), as well as examples of its use.

  19. Ion channel probes for scanning ion conductance microscopy.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Yi; Bright, Leonard K; Shi, Wenqing; Aspinwall, Craig A; Baker, Lane A

    2014-12-23

    The sensitivity and selectivity of ion channels provide an appealing opportunity for sensor development. Here, we describe ion channel probes (ICPs), which consist of multiple ion channels reconstituted into lipid bilayers suspended across the opening of perflourinated glass micropipets. When incorporated with a scanning ion conductance microscope (SICM), ICPs displayed a distance-dependent current response that depended on the number of ion channels in the membrane. With distance-dependent current as feedback, probes were translated laterally, to demonstrate the possibility of imaging with ICPs. The ICP platform yields several potential advantages for SICM that will enable exciting opportunities for incorporation of chemical information into imaging and for high-resolution imaging.

  20. Computing rates of Markov models of voltage-gated ion channels by inverting partial differential equations governing the probability density functions of the conducting and non-conducting states

    PubMed Central

    Tveito, Aslak; Lines, Glenn T.; Edwards, Andrew G.; McCulloch, Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Markov models are ubiquitously used to represent the function of single ion channels. However, solving the inverse problem to construct a Markov model of single channel dynamics from bilayer or patch-clamp recordings remains challenging, particularly for channels involving complex gating processes. Methods for solving the inverse problem are generally based on data from voltage clamp measurements. Here, we describe an alternative approach to this problem based on measurements of voltage traces. The voltage traces define probability density functions of the functional states of an ion channel. These probability density functions can also be computed by solving a deterministic system of partial differential equations. The inversion is based on tuning the rates of the Markov models used in the deterministic system of partial differential equations such that the solution mimics the properties of the probability density function gathered from (pseudo) experimental data as well as possible. The optimization is done by defining a cost function to measure the difference between the deterministic solution and the solution based on experimental data. By evoking the properties of this function, it is possible to infer whether the rates of the Markov model are identifiable by our method. We present applications to Markov model well known from the literature. PMID:27154008

  1. Ion channels versus ion pumps: the principal difference, in principle

    PubMed Central

    Gadsby, David C.

    2009-01-01

    Two kinds of border guards control the incessant traffic of ions across cell membranes: ion channels and ion pumps. When open, channels let selected ions diffuse rapidly down electrical and concentration gradients, whereas ion pumps labour tirelessly to maintain the gradients, by consuming energy to slowly move ions against them. Because of their diametrically opposed tasks and their divergent speeds, channels and pumps have traditionally been viewed as completely different entities, as alike as chalk and cheese. But new structural and mechanistic information about both classes of these molecular machines challenges this comfortable separation, forcing its reevaluation. PMID:19339978

  2. Ion Channels in Innate and Adaptive Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Feske, Stefan; Wulff, Heike; Skolnik, Edward Y.

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels and transporters mediate the transport of charged ions across hydrophobic lipid membranes. In immune cells, divalent cations such as calcium, magnesium, and zinc have important roles as second messengers to regulate intracellular signaling pathways. By contrast, monovalent cations such as sodium and potassium mainly regulate the membrane potential, which indirectly controls the influx of calcium and immune cell signaling. Studies investigating human patients with mutations in ion channels and transporters, analysis of gene-targeted mice, or pharmacological experiments with ion channel inhibitors have revealed important roles of ionic signals in lymphocyte development and in innate and adaptive immune responses. We here review the mechanisms underlying the function of ion channels and transporters in lymphocytes and innate immune cells and discuss their roles in lymphocyte development, adaptive and innate immune responses, and autoimmunity, as well as recent efforts to develop pharmacological inhibitors of ion channels for immunomodulatory therapy. PMID:25861976

  3. Ion channels, channelopathies, and tooth formation.

    PubMed

    Duan, X

    2014-02-01

    The biological functions of ion channels in tooth development vary according to the nature of their gating, the species of ions passing through those gates, the number of gates, localization of channels, tissue expressing the channel, and interactions between cells and microenvironment. Ion channels feature unique and specific ion flux in ameloblasts, odontoblasts, and other tooth-specific cell lineages. Both enamel and dentin have active chemical systems orchestrating a variety of ion exchanges and demineralization and remineralization processes in a stage-dependent manner. An important role for ion channels is to regulate and maintain the calcium and pH homeostasis that are critical for proper enamel and dentin biomineralization. Specific functions of chloride channels, TRPVs, calcium channels, potassium channels, and solute carrier superfamily members in tooth formation have been gradually clarified in recent years. Mutations in these ion channels or transporters often result in disastrous changes in tooth development. The channelopathies of tooth include altered eruption (CLCN7, KCNJ2, TRPV3), root dysplasia (CLCN7, KCNJ2), amelogenesis imperfecta (KCNJ1, CFTR, AE2, CACNA1C, GJA1), dentin dysplasia (CLCN5), small teeth (CACNA1C, GJA1), tooth agenesis (CLCN7), and other impairments. The mechanisms leading to tooth channelopathies are primarily related to pH regulation, calcium homeostasis, or other alterations of the niche for tooth eruption and development. PMID:24076519

  4. Modeling ion channels: Past, present, and future

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Ion channels are membrane-bound enzymes whose catalytic sites are ion-conducting pores that open and close (gate) in response to specific environmental stimuli. Ion channels are important contributors to cell signaling and homeostasis. Our current understanding of gating is the product of 60 plus years of voltage-clamp recording augmented by intervention in the form of environmental, chemical, and mutational perturbations. The need for good phenomenological models of gating has evolved in parallel with the sophistication of experimental technique. The goal of modeling is to develop realistic schemes that not only describe data, but also accurately reflect mechanisms of action. This review covers three areas that have contributed to the understanding of ion channels: traditional Eyring kinetic theory, molecular dynamics analysis, and statistical thermodynamics. Although the primary emphasis is on voltage-dependent channels, the methods discussed here are easily generalized to other stimuli and could be applied to any ion channel and indeed any macromolecule. PMID:24935742

  5. Cardiac ion channels in health and disease.

    PubMed

    Amin, Ahmad S; Tan, Hanno L; Wilde, Arthur A M

    2010-01-01

    Cardiac electrical activity depends on the coordinated propagation of excitatory stimuli through the heart and, as a consequence, the generation of action potentials in individual cardiomyocytes. Action potential formation results from the opening and closing (gating) of ion channels that are expressed within the sarcolemma of cardiomyocytes. Ion channels possess distinct genetic, molecular, pharmacologic, and gating properties and exhibit dissimilar expression levels within different cardiac regions. By gating, ion channels permit ion currents across the sarcolemma, thereby creating the different phases of the action potential (e.g., resting phase, depolarization, repolarization). The importance of ion channels in maintaining normal heart rhythm is reflected by the increased incidence of arrhythmias in inherited diseases that are linked to mutations in genes encoding ion channels or their accessory proteins and in acquired diseases that are associated with changes in ion channel expression levels or gating properties. This review discusses ion channels that contribute to action potential formation in healthy hearts and their role in inherited and acquired diseases. PMID:19875343

  6. Equivalence of trans paths in ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alvarez, Juan; Hajek, Bruce

    2006-04-01

    We explore stochastic models for the study of ion transport in biological cells. Analysis of these models explains and explores an interesting feature of ion transport observed by biophysicists. Namely, the average time it takes ions to cross certain ion channels is the same in either direction, even if there is an electric potential difference across the channels. It is shown for simple single ion models that the distribution of a path (i.e., the history of location versus time) of an ion crossing the channel in one direction has the same distribution as the time-reversed path of an ion crossing the channel in the reverse direction. Therefore, not only is the mean duration of these paths equal, but other measures, such as the variance of passage time or the mean time a path spends within a specified section of the channel, are also the same for both directions of traversal. The feature is also explored for channels with interacting ions. If a system of interacting ions is in reversible equilibrium (net flux is zero), then the equivalence of the left-to-right trans paths with the time-reversed right-to-left trans paths still holds. However, if the system is in equilibrium, but not reversible equilibrium, then such equivalence need not hold.

  7. New apparatus increases ion beam power density

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, L. V.; Sandborn, V. A.

    1964-01-01

    To increase ion engine or rocket power, an ion source and emitter, an ion beam focusing electrode, and an ion accelerator are incorporated into the system. In operation the space charge surrounding the ion emitter decreases, the ion beam density accelerates, and engine power increases.

  8. Understanding autoimmunity: The ion channel perspective.

    PubMed

    RamaKrishnan, Anantha Maharasi; Sankaranarayanan, Kavitha

    2016-07-01

    Ion channels are integral membrane proteins that orchestrate the passage of ions across the cell membrane and thus regulate various key physiological processes of the living system. The stringently regulated expression and function of these channels hold a pivotal role in the development and execution of various cellular functions. Malfunction of these channels results in debilitating diseases collectively termed channelopathies. In this review, we highlight the role of these proteins in the immune system with special emphasis on the development of autoimmunity. The role of ion channels in various autoimmune diseases is also listed out. This comprehensive review summarizes the ion channels that could be used as molecular targets in the development of new therapeutics against autoimmune disorders.

  9. Ion permeation mechanism of the potassium channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Åqvist, Johan; Luzhkov, Victor

    2000-04-01

    Ion-selective channels enable the specific permeation of ions through cell membranes and provide the basis of several important biological functions; for example, electric signalling in the nervous system. Although a large amount of electrophysiological data is available, the molecular mechanisms by which these channels can mediate ion transport remain a significant unsolved problem. With the recently determined crystal structure of the representative K+ channel (KcsA) from Streptomyces lividans, it becomes possible to examine ion conduction pathways on a microscopic level. K+ channels utilize multi-ion conduction mechanisms, and the three-dimensional structure also shows several ions present in the channel. Here we report results from molecular dynamics free energy perturbation calculations that both establish the nature of the multiple ion conduction mechanism and yield the correct ion selectivity of the channel. By evaluating the energetics of all relevant occupancy states of the selectivity filter, we find that the favoured conduction pathway involves transitions only between two main states with a free difference of about 5 kcal mol-1. Other putative permeation pathways can be excluded because they would involve states that are too high in energy.

  10. Discovery of functional antibodies targeting ion channels.

    PubMed

    Wilkinson, Trevor C I; Gardener, Matthew J; Williams, Wendy A

    2015-04-01

    Ion channels play critical roles in physiology and disease by modulation of cellular functions such as electrical excitability, secretion, cell migration, and gene transcription. Ion channels represent an important target class for drug discovery that has been largely addressed, to date, using small-molecule approaches. A significant opportunity exists to target these channels with antibodies and alternative formats of biologics. Antibodies display high specificity and affinity for their target antigen, and they have the potential to target ion channels very selectively. Nevertheless, isolating antibodies to this target class is challenging due to the difficulties in expression and purification of ion channels in a format suitable for antibody drug discovery in addition to the complexity of screening for function. In this article, we will review the current state of ion channel biologics discovery and the progress that has been made. We will also highlight the challenges in isolating functional antibodies to these targets and how these challenges may be addressed. Finally, we also illustrate successful approaches to isolating functional monoclonal antibodies targeting ion channels by way of a number of case studies drawn from recent publications.

  11. Ion Channel Probes for Scanning Ion Conductance Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The sensitivity and selectivity of ion channels provide an appealing opportunity for sensor development. Here, we describe ion channel probes (ICPs), which consist of multiple ion channels reconstituted into lipid bilayers suspended across the opening of perflourinated glass micropipets. When incorporated with a scanning ion conductance microscope (SICM), ICPs displayed a distance-dependent current response that depended on the number of ion channels in the membrane. With distance-dependent current as feedback, probes were translated laterally, to demonstrate the possibility of imaging with ICPs. The ICP platform yields several potential advantages for SICM that will enable exciting opportunities for incorporation of chemical information into imaging and for high-resolution imaging. PMID:25425190

  12. Pressure effects on stopping power of solids for channeled ions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pathak, A. P.; Cruz, S. A.; Soullard, J.

    2005-01-01

    Pressure effects on the energy loss of swift channeled ions through silicon are considered. This is accomplished by estimating the changes in orbital charge densities and the corresponding mean ionization potentials, induced by increasing pressure. The bulk density for the compressed material is obtained from available experimental information on the corresponding equation of state for pressures up to 11.3 GPa, beyond which a structural phase transformation occurs. The high pressure is simulated by first caging the individual Si atom in a small spherical volume V and estimated as P=-partial derivative E/partial derivative V, where E is the total electronic energy for a particular confinement volume. The energy is selfconsistently calculated through a recently developed shell-wise version of the Thomas-Fermi-Dirac-Weizsacker density functional, which compares favorably with ab initio calculations on the basis of a cluster model where the Si atom is surrounded by neon (helium) atoms (in a molecular scheme). The resulting individual electronic shell charge densities are then averaged along planar channels to find the effective charge densities needed in the channeling energy loss calculations for channeled ions. The position dependence of the energy loss in the channels for the free and high-pressure case is calculated for 5 Me V protons and alpha particles along the (110) planar channels.

  13. Silicon-Based Ion Channel Platforms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilk, S. J.; Petrossian, L.; Goryll, M.; Tang, J. M.; Eisenberg, R. S.; Saraniti, M.; Goodnick, S. M.; Thornton, T. J.

    We demonstrate that silicon substrates can be used as a universal platform for recording the electrical activity of ion channels inserted into suspended bilayers. The bilayers span narrow openings etched into silicon substrates using standard microelectronics processing techniques. Reversible Ag/AgCl electrodes are integrated around the circumference of the opening and provide long-term stable measurements of the ion channel currents. To demonstrate the utility of the silicon platform we have measured the electrical activity of OmpF porin ion channel proteins inserted into a lipid bilayer formed using the Montal — Mueller method. Systematic measurements of the lipid giga-seal characteristics are presented, including ac conductance measurements and statistical analysis in order to resolve the conductance of individual ion-channels.

  14. Alcohol intoxication: Ion channels and genetics

    SciTech Connect

    Harris, A.R.; Allan, A.M. )

    1989-04-01

    Acute in vitro exposure to ethanol and other intoxicant-anesthetics activates {gamma}-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-stimulated chloride channels and inhibits voltage-dependent calcium and sodium channels of isolated brain membranes. The question of whether these neurochemical actions are responsible for intoxication in vivo has been addressed using animal populations displaying genetic differences in sensitivity to alcohol and benzodiazepine intoxication. These genetic approaches include inbred strains, selected lines, recombinant inbred strains, and heterogeneous stocks. Genetic differences in ion channel function provide strong evidence for a role of the GABA-stimulated chloride channel in ethanol and benzodiazepine intoxication; the role of calcium and sodium channels is less clear.

  15. Models of permeation in ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuyucak, Serdar; Sparre Andersen, Olaf; Chung, Shin-Ho

    2001-11-01

    Ion channels are formed by specific proteins embedded in the cell membrane and provide pathways for fast and controlled flow of selected ions down their electrochemical gradient. This activity generates action potentials in nerves, muscles and other excitable cells, and forms the basis of all movement, sensation and thought processes in living beings. While the functional properties of ion channels are well known from physiological studies, lack of structural knowledge has hindered development of realistic theoretical models necessary for understanding and interpretation of these properties. Recent determination of the molecular structures of potassium and mechanosensitive channels from x-ray crystallography has finally broken this impasse, heralding a new age in ion channel studies where study of structure-function relationships takes a central stage. In this paper, we present a critical review of various approaches to modelling of ion transport in membrane channels, including continuum theories, Brownian dynamics, and classical and ab initio molecular dynamics. Strengths and weaknesses of each approach are discussed and illustrated with applications to some specific ion channels.

  16. Reconstruction of Cell Surface Densities of Ion Pumps, Exchangers, and Channels from mRNA Expression, Conductance Kinetics, Whole-Cell Calcium, and Current-Clamp Voltage Recordings, with an Application to Human Uterine Smooth Muscle Cells

    PubMed Central

    Atia, Jolene; McCloskey, Conor; Shmygol, Anatoly S.; Rand, David A.; van den Berg, Hugo A.; Blanks, Andrew M.

    2016-01-01

    Uterine smooth muscle cells remain quiescent throughout most of gestation, only generating spontaneous action potentials immediately prior to, and during, labor. This study presents a method that combines transcriptomics with biophysical recordings to characterise the conductance repertoire of these cells, the ‘conductance repertoire’ being the total complement of ion channels and transporters expressed by an electrically active cell. Transcriptomic analysis provides a set of potential electrogenic entities, of which the conductance repertoire is a subset. Each entity within the conductance repertoire was modeled independently and its gating parameter values were fixed using the available biophysical data. The only remaining free parameters were the surface densities for each entity. We characterise the space of combinations of surface densities (density vectors) consistent with experimentally observed membrane potential and calcium waveforms. This yields insights on the functional redundancy of the system as well as its behavioral versatility. Our approach couples high-throughput transcriptomic data with physiological behaviors in health and disease, and provides a formal method to link genotype to phenotype in excitable systems. We accurately predict current densities and chart functional redundancy. For example, we find that to evoke the observed voltage waveform, the BK channel is functionally redundant whereas hERG is essential. Furthermore, our analysis suggests that activation of calcium-activated chloride conductances by intracellular calcium release is the key factor underlying spontaneous depolarisations. PMID:27105427

  17. Reconstruction of Cell Surface Densities of Ion Pumps, Exchangers, and Channels from mRNA Expression, Conductance Kinetics, Whole-Cell Calcium, and Current-Clamp Voltage Recordings, with an Application to Human Uterine Smooth Muscle Cells.

    PubMed

    Atia, Jolene; McCloskey, Conor; Shmygol, Anatoly S; Rand, David A; van den Berg, Hugo A; Blanks, Andrew M

    2016-04-01

    Uterine smooth muscle cells remain quiescent throughout most of gestation, only generating spontaneous action potentials immediately prior to, and during, labor. This study presents a method that combines transcriptomics with biophysical recordings to characterise the conductance repertoire of these cells, the 'conductance repertoire' being the total complement of ion channels and transporters expressed by an electrically active cell. Transcriptomic analysis provides a set of potential electrogenic entities, of which the conductance repertoire is a subset. Each entity within the conductance repertoire was modeled independently and its gating parameter values were fixed using the available biophysical data. The only remaining free parameters were the surface densities for each entity. We characterise the space of combinations of surface densities (density vectors) consistent with experimentally observed membrane potential and calcium waveforms. This yields insights on the functional redundancy of the system as well as its behavioral versatility. Our approach couples high-throughput transcriptomic data with physiological behaviors in health and disease, and provides a formal method to link genotype to phenotype in excitable systems. We accurately predict current densities and chart functional redundancy. For example, we find that to evoke the observed voltage waveform, the BK channel is functionally redundant whereas hERG is essential. Furthermore, our analysis suggests that activation of calcium-activated chloride conductances by intracellular calcium release is the key factor underlying spontaneous depolarisations. PMID:27105427

  18. Ion selectivity strategies of sodium channel selectivity filters.

    PubMed

    Dudev, Todor; Lim, Carmay

    2014-12-16

    CONSPECTUS: Sodium ion channels selectively transport Na(+) cations across the cell membrane. These integral parts of the cell machinery are implicated in regulating the cardiac, skeletal and smooth muscle contraction, nerve impulses, salt and water homeostasis, as well as pain and taste perception. Their malfunction often results in various channelopathies of the heart, brain, skeletal muscles, and lung; thus, sodium channels are key drug targets for various disorders including cardiac arrhythmias, heart attack, stroke, migraine, epilepsy, pain, cancer, and autoimmune disorders. The ability of sodium channels to discriminate the native Na(+) among other competing ions in the surrounding fluids is crucial for proper cellular functions. The selectivity filter (SF), the narrowest part of the channel's open pore, lined with amino acid residues that specifically interact with the permeating ion, plays a major role in determining Na(+) selectivity. Different sodium channels have different SFs, which vary in the symmetry, number, charge, arrangement, and chemical type of the metal-ligating groups and pore size: epithelial/degenerin/acid-sensing ion channels have generally trimeric SFs lined with three conserved neutral serines and/or backbone carbonyls; eukaryotic sodium channels have EKEE, EEKE, DKEA, and DEKA SFs with an invariant positively charged lysine from the second or third domain; and bacterial voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channels exhibit symmetrical EEEE SFs, reminiscent of eukaryotic voltage-gated calcium channels. How do these different sodium channel SFs achieve high selectivity for Na(+) over its key rivals, K(+) and Ca(2+)? What factors govern the metal competition in these SFs and which of these factors are exploited to achieve Na(+) selectivity in the different sodium channel SFs? The free energies for replacing K(+) or Ca(2+) bound inside different model SFs with Na(+), evaluated by a combination of density functional theory and continuum dielectric

  19. Hypoxia. 4. Hypoxia and ion channel function

    PubMed Central

    Polak, Jan

    2011-01-01

    The ability to sense and respond to oxygen deprivation is required for survival; thus, understanding the mechanisms by which changes in oxygen are linked to cell viability and function is of great importance. Ion channels play a critical role in regulating cell function in a wide variety of biological processes, including neuronal transmission, control of ventilation, cardiac contractility, and control of vasomotor tone. Since the 1988 discovery of oxygen-sensitive potassium channels in chemoreceptors, the effect of hypoxia on an assortment of ion channels has been studied in an array of cell types. In this review, we describe the effects of both acute and sustained hypoxia (continuous and intermittent) on mammalian ion channels in several tissues, the mode of action, and their contribution to diverse cellular processes. PMID:21178108

  20. Screening technologies for ion channel drug discovery.

    PubMed

    Terstappen, Georg C; Roncarati, Renza; Dunlop, John; Peri, Ravikumar

    2010-05-01

    For every movement, heartbeat and thought, ion channels need to open and close. It is therefore not surprising that their malfunctioning leads to serious diseases. Currently, only approximately 10% of drugs, with a market value in excess of US$10 billion, act on ion channels. The systematic exploitation of this target class has started, enabled by novel assay technologies and fundamental advances of the structural and mechanistic understanding of channel function. The latter, which was rewarded with the Nobel Prize in 2003, has opened up an avenue for rational drug design. In this review we provide an overview of the current repertoire of screening technologies that has evolved to drive ion channel-targeted drug discovery towards new medicines of the future.

  1. Superposition properties of interacting ion channels.

    PubMed Central

    Keleshian, A M; Yeo, G F; Edeson, R O; Madsen, B W

    1994-01-01

    Quantitative analysis of patch clamp data is widely based on stochastic models of single-channel kinetics. Membrane patches often contain more than one active channel of a given type, and it is usually assumed that these behave independently in order to interpret the record and infer individual channel properties. However, recent studies suggest there are significant channel interactions in some systems. We examine a model of dependence in a system of two identical channels, each modeled by a continuous-time Markov chain in which specified transition rates are dependent on the conductance state of the other channel, changing instantaneously when the other channel opens or closes. Each channel then has, e.g., a closed time density that is conditional on the other channel being open or closed, these being identical under independence. We relate the two densities by a convolution function that embodies information about, and serves to quantify, dependence in the closed class. Distributions of observable (superposition) sojourn times are given in terms of these conditional densities. The behavior of two channel systems based on two- and three-state Markov models is examined by simulation. Optimized fitting of simulated data using reasonable parameters values and sample size indicates that both positive and negative cooperativity can be distinguished from independence. PMID:7524711

  2. Single-Channel Recording of Ligand-Gated Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Plested, Andrew J R

    2016-01-01

    Single-channel recordings reveal the microscopic properties of individual ligand-gated ion channels. Such recordings contain much more information than measurements of ensemble behavior and can yield structural and functional information about the receptors that participate in fast synaptic transmission in the brain. With a little care, a standard patch-clamp electrophysiology setup can be adapted for single-channel recording in a matter of hours. Thenceforth, it is a realistic aim to record single-molecule activity with microsecond resolution from arbitrary cell types, including cell lines and neurons. PMID:27480725

  3. Optimum ion channel properties in the squid giant axon.

    PubMed

    Adair, Robert K

    2004-04-01

    Evolutionary pressures are presumed to act so as to maximize the efficiency of biological systems. However, the utility of that premise is marred by the difficulties in defining and evaluating both the efficiency of systems and the character of the available variation space. Following Hodgkin and Adrian, we examine the character of voltage gated ion channels in the nonmyelinated giant axons of the squid and find that both the channel densities and channel transition rates have values that nearly optimize signal sensitivity as well as signal velocity.

  4. Optimum ion channel properties in the squid giant axon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adair, Robert K.

    2004-04-01

    Evolutionary pressures are presumed to act so as to maximize the efficiency of biological systems. However, the utility of that premise is marred by the difficulties in defining and evaluating both the efficiency of systems and the character of the available variation space. Following Hodgkin and Adrian, we examine the character of voltage gated ion channels in the nonmyelinated giant axons of the squid and find that both the channel densities and channel transition rates have values that nearly optimize signal sensitivity as well as signal velocity.

  5. The Origins of Transmembrane Ion Channels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael A.

    2012-01-01

    Even though membrane proteins that mediate transport of ions and small molecules across cell walls are among the largest and least understood biopolymers in contemporary cells, it is still possible to shed light on their origins and early evolution. The central observation is that transmembrane portions of most ion channels are simply bundles of -helices. By combining results of experimental and computer simulation studies on synthetic models and natural channels, mostly of non-genomic origin, we show that the emergence of -helical channels was protobiologically plausible, and did not require highly specific amino acid sequences. Despite their simple structure, such channels could possess properties that, at the first sight, appear to require markedly larger complexity. Specifically, we explain how the antiamoebin channels, which are made of identical helices, 16 amino acids in length, achieve efficiency comparable to that of highly evolved channels. We further show that antiamoebin channels are extremely flexible, compared to modern, genetically coded channels. On the basis of our results, we propose that channels evolved further towards high structural complexity because they needed to acquire stable rigid structures and mechanisms for precise regulation rather than improve efficiency. In general, even though architectures of membrane proteins are not nearly as diverse as those of water-soluble proteins, they are sufficiently flexible to adapt readily to the functional demands arising during evolution.

  6. Studying mechanosensitive ion channels using liposomes.

    PubMed

    Martinac, Boris; Rohde, Paul R; Battle, Andrew R; Petrov, Evgeny; Pal, Prithwish; Foo, Alexander Fook; Vásquez, Valeria; Huynh, Thuan; Kloda, Anna

    2010-01-01

    Mechanosensitive (MS) ion channels are the primary molecular transducers of mechanical force into electrical and/or chemical intracellular signals in living cells. They have been implicated in innumerable mechanosensory physiological processes including touch and pain sensation, hearing, blood pressure control, micturition, cell volume regulation, tissue growth, or cellular turgor control. Much of what we know about the basic physical principles underlying the conversion of mechanical force acting upon membranes of living cells into conformational changes of MS channels comes from studies of MS channels reconstituted into artificial liposomes. Using bacterial MS channels as a model, we have shown by reconstituting these channels into liposomes that there is a close relationship between the physico-chemical properties of the lipid bilayer and structural dynamics bringing about the function of these channels.

  7. Regulation of Ion Channels by Pyridine Nucleotides

    PubMed Central

    Kilfoil, Peter J.; Tipparaju, Srinivas M.; Barski, Oleg A.; Bhatnagar, Aruni

    2014-01-01

    Recent research suggests that in addition to their role as soluble electron carriers, pyridine nucleotides [NAD(P)(H)] also regulate ion transport mechanisms. This mode of regulation seems to have been conserved through evolution. Several bacterial ion–transporting proteins or their auxiliary subunits possess nucleotide-binding domains. In eukaryotes, the Kv1 and Kv4 channels interact with pyridine nucleotide–binding β-subunits that belong to the aldo-keto reductase superfamily. Binding of NADP+ to Kvβ removes N-type inactivation of Kv currents, whereas NADPH stabilizes channel inactivation. Pyridine nucleotides also regulate Slo channels by interacting with their cytosolic regulator of potassium conductance domains that show high sequence homology to the bacterial TrkA family of K+ transporters. These nucleotides also have been shown to modify the activity of the plasma membrane KATP channels, the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator, the transient receptor potential M2 channel, and the intracellular ryanodine receptor calcium release channels. In addition, pyridine nucleotides also modulate the voltage-gated sodium channel by supporting the activity of its ancillary subunit—the glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase-like protein. Moreover, the NADP+ metabolite, NAADP+, regulates intracellular calcium homeostasis via the 2-pore channel, ryanodine receptor, or transient receptor potential M2 channels. Regulation of ion channels by pyridine nucleotides may be required for integrating cell ion transport to energetics and for sensing oxygen levels or metabolite availability. This mechanism also may be an important component of hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction, memory, and circadian rhythms, and disruption of this regulatory axis may be linked to dysregulation of calcium homeostasis and cardiac arrhythmias. PMID:23410881

  8. Tuning Photochromic Ion Channel Blockers

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Photochromic channel blockers provide a conceptually simple and convenient way to modulate neuronal activity with light. We have recently described a family of azobenzenes that function as tonic blockers of Kv channels but require UV-A light to unblock and need to be actively switched by toggling between two different wavelengths. We now introduce red-shifted compounds that fully operate in the visible region of the spectrum and quickly turn themselves off in the dark. Furthermore, we have developed a version that does not block effectively in the dark-adapted state, can be switched to a blocking state with blue light, and reverts to the inactive state automatically. Photochromic blockers of this type could be useful for the photopharmacological control of neuronal activity under mild conditions. PMID:22860175

  9. Mitochondrial Ion Channels in Cancer Transformation

    PubMed Central

    Madamba, Stephen M.; Damri, Kevin N.; Dejean, Laurent M.; Peixoto, Pablo M.

    2015-01-01

    Cancer transformation involves reprograming of mitochondrial function to avert cell death mechanisms, monopolize energy metabolism, accelerate mitotic proliferation, and promote metastasis. Mitochondrial ion channels have emerged as promising therapeutic targets because of their connection to metabolic and apoptotic functions. This mini review discusses how mitochondrial channels may be associated with cancer transformation and expands on the possible involvement of mitochondrial protein import complexes in pathophysiological process. PMID:26090338

  10. Silicon-based ion channel sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goryll, M.; Wilk, S.; Laws, G. M.; Thornton, T.; Goodnick, S.; Saraniti, M.; Tang, J.; Eisenberg, R. S.

    2003-09-01

    In this paper we present a method to fabricate an aperture in a silicon wafer that can be used to suspend a freestanding lipid bilayer membrane. The design offers the feature of scalability of the aperture size into the submicron range. Lipid bilayer membranes formed across the aperture in the oxidized silicon substrate show a gigaohm sealing resistance. The stability of these membranes allowed the insertion of a nanometer-sized ion channel protein (OmpF porin) and the measurement of voltage dependent gating that can be expected from a working porin ion channel.

  11. The Earliest Ion Channels in Protocellular Membranes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mijajlovic, Milan; Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael; Wei, Chenyu

    2010-01-01

    Cellular membranes with their hydrophobic interior are virtually impermeable to ions. Bulk of ion transport through them is enabled through ion channels. Ion channels of contemporary cells are complex protein molecules which span the membrane creating a cylindrical pore filled with water. Protocells, which are widely regarded as precursors to modern cells, had similarly impermeable membranes, but the set of proteins in their disposal was much simpler and more limited. We have been, therefore, exploring an idea that the first ion channels in protocellular membranes were formed by much smaller peptide molecules that could spontaneously selfassemble into short-lived cylindrical bundles in a membrane. Earlier studies have shown that a group of peptides known as peptaibols is capable of forming ion channels in lipid bilayers when they are exposed to an electric field. Peptaibols are small, non-genetically encoded peptides produced by some fungi as a part of their system of defense against bacteria. They are usually only 14-20 residues long, which is just enough to span the membrane. Their sequence is characterized by the presence of non-standard amino acids which, interestingly, are also expected to have existed on the early earth. In particular, the presence of 2-aminoisobutyric acid (AIB) gives peptaibols strong helix forming propensities. Association of the helices inside membranes leads to the formation of cylindrical bundles, typically containing 4 to 10 monomers. Although peptaibols are excellent candidates for models of the earliest ion channels their structures, which are stabilized only by van der Waals forces and occasional hydrogen bonds between neighboring helices, are not very stable. Although it might properly reflect protobiological reality, it is also a major obstacle in studying channel behavior. For this reason we focused on two members of the peptaibol family, trichotoxin and antiamoebin, which are characterized by a single conductance level. This

  12. The earliest ion channels in protocellular membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mijajlovic, Milan; Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael; Wei, Chenyu

    Cellular membranes with their hydrophobic interior are virtually impermeable to ions. Bulk of ion transport through them is enabled through ion channels. Ion channels of contemporary cells are complex protein molecules which span the membrane creating a cylindrical pore filled with water. Protocells, which are widely regarded as precursors to modern cells, had similarly impermeable membranes, but the set of proteins in their disposal was much simpler and more limited. We have been, therefore, exploring an idea that the first ion channels in protocellular membranes were formed by much smaller peptide molecules that could spontaneously self-assemble into short-lived cylindrical bundles in a membrane. Earlier studies have shown that a group of peptides known as peptaibols is capable of forming ion channels in lipid bilayers when they are exposed to an electric field. Peptaibols are small, non-genetically encoded peptides produced by some fungi as a part of their system of defense against bacteria. They are usually only 14-20 residues long, which is just enough to span the membrane. Their sequence is characterized by the presence of non-standard amino acids which, interestingly, are also expected to have existed on the early earth. In particular, the presence of 2-aminoisobutyric acid (AIB) gives peptaibols strong helix forming propensities. Association of the helices inside membranes leads to the formation of cylindrical bundles, typically containing 4 to 10 monomers. Although peptaibols are excellent candidates for models of the earliest ion channels their struc-tures, which are stabilized only by van der Waals forces and occasional hydrogen bonds between neighboring helices, are not very stable. Although it might properly reflect protobiological real-ity, it is also a major obstacle in studying channel behavior. For this reason we focused on two members of the peptaibol family, trichotoxin and antiamoebin, which are characterized by a single conductance level. This

  13. Conductance of Ion Channels - Theory vs. Experiment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Wilson, Michael; Mijajlovic, Milan

    2013-01-01

    Transmembrane ion channels mediate a number of essential physiological processes in a cell ranging from regulating osmotic pressure to transmission of neural signals. Kinetics and selectivity of ion transport is of critical importance to a cell and, not surprisingly, it is a subject of numerous experimental and theoretical studies. In this presentation we will analyze in detail computer simulations of two simple channels from fungi - antiamoebin and trichotoxin. Each of these channels is made of an alpha-helical bundle of small, nongenomically synthesized peptides containing a number of rare amino acids and exhibits strong antimicrobial activity. We will focus on calculating ionic conductance defined as the ratio of ionic current through the channel to applied voltage. From molecular dynamics simulations, conductance can be calculated in at least two ways, each involving different approximations. Specifically, the current, given as the number of charges transferred through the channel per unit of time, can be obtained from the number of events in which ions cross the channel during the simulation. This method works well for large currents (high conductance values and/or applied voltages). If the number of crossing events is small, reliable estimates of current are difficult to achieve. Alternatively, conductance can be estimated assuming that ion transport can be well approximated as diffusion in the external potential given by the free energy profile. Then, the current can be calculated by solving the one-dimensional diffusion equation in this external potential and applied voltage (the generalized Nernst-Planck equation). To do so three ingredients are needed: the free energy profile, the position-dependent diffusion coefficient and the diffusive flux of ions into the channel. All these quantities can be obtained from molecular dynamics simulations. An important advantage of this method is that it can be used equally well to estimating large and small currents

  14. Targeting ion channels in cystic fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Mall, Marcus A; Galietta, Luis J V

    2015-09-01

    Mutations in the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene cause a characteristic defect in epithelial ion transport that plays a central role in the pathogenesis of cystic fibrosis (CF). Hence, pharmacological correction of this ion transport defect by targeting of mutant CFTR, or alternative ion channels that may compensate for CFTR dysfunction, has long been considered as an attractive approach to a causal therapy of this life-limiting disease. The recent introduction of the CFTR potentiator ivacaftor into the therapy of a subgroup of patients with specific CFTR mutations was a major milestone and enormous stimulus for seeking effective ion transport modulators for all patients with CF. In this review, we discuss recent breakthroughs and setbacks with CFTR modulators designed to rescue mutant CFTR including the common mutation F508del. Further, we examine the alternative chloride channels TMEM16A and SLC26A9, as well as the epithelial sodium channel ENaC as alternative targets in CF lung disease, which remains the major cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with CF. Finally, we will focus on the hurdles that still need to be overcome to make effective ion transport modulation therapies available for all patients with CF irrespective of their CFTR genotype.

  15. Automated Parallel Recordings of Topologically Identified Single Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Kawano, Ryuji; Tsuji, Yutaro; Sato, Koji; Osaki, Toshihisa; Kamiya, Koki; Hirano, Minako; Ide, Toru; Miki, Norihisa; Takeuchi, Shoji

    2013-01-01

    Although ion channels are attractive targets for drug discovery, the systematic screening of ion channel-targeted drugs remains challenging. To facilitate automated single ion-channel recordings for the analysis of drug interactions with the intra- and extracellular domain, we have developed a parallel recording methodology using artificial cell membranes. The use of stable lipid bilayer formation in droplet chamber arrays facilitated automated, parallel, single-channel recording from reconstituted native and mutated ion channels. Using this system, several types of ion channels, including mutated forms, were characterised by determining the protein orientation. In addition, we provide evidence that both intra- and extracellular amyloid-beta fragments directly inhibit the channel open probability of the hBK channel. This automated methodology provides a high-throughput drug screening system for the targeting of ion channels and a data-intensive analysis technique for studying ion channel gating mechanisms. PMID:23771282

  16. More Than a Pore: Ion Channel Signaling Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Fakler, Bernd; Kaczmarek, Leonard K.; Isom, Lori L.

    2014-01-01

    Voltage- and ligand-gated ion channels form the molecular basis of cellular excitability. With >400 members and accounting for ∼1.5% of the human genome, ion channels are some of the most well studied of all proteins in heterologous expression systems. Yet, ion channels often exhibit unexpected properties in vivo because of their interaction with a variety of signaling/scaffolding proteins. Such interactions can influence the function and localization of ion channels, as well as their coupling to intracellular second messengers and pathways, thus increasing the signaling potential of these ion channels in neurons. Moreover, functions have been ascribed to ion channels that are largely independent of their ion-conducting roles. Molecular and functional dissection of the ion channel proteome/interactome has yielded new insights into the composition of ion channel complexes and how their dysregulation leads to human disease. PMID:25392484

  17. Spiking synchronization of ion channel clusters on an axon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zeng, Shangyou; Tang, Yi; Jung, Peter

    2007-07-01

    Ion channels are distributed in clusters in squid giant axons, rat retinal nerve fiber layers, pyramidal cell dendrites of Apteronotus, etc. Ion channel clusters along the unmyelinated axon generate spontaneous spiking due to ion channel noise. Ion channel clusters are coupled by the axonal cable, and spontaneous spiking of each ion channel cluster can be synchronized. This paper considers the spiking synchronization of two ion channel clusters coupled by an axon. It is shown that axonal parameters affect the spiking synchronization exponentially and ion channel clusters have maximal spiking synchronization when they have the same size. It is further shown that there is an optimal length of the ion channel clusters with maximal spiking synchronization and the optimal length accords with the length of the node of Ranvier in the myelinated axon.

  18. The Ligand Gated Ion Channel Database.

    PubMed

    Le Novère, N; Changeux, J P

    1999-01-01

    The ligand gated ion channels (LGICs) are ionotropic receptors to neurotransmitters. Their physiological effect is carried out by the opening of an ionic channel upon binding of a particular neurotransmitter. These LGICs constitute superfamilies of receptors formed by homologous subunits. A database has been developed to handle the growing wealth of cloned subunits. This database contains nucleic acid sequences, protein sequences, as well as multiple sequence alignments and phylogenetic studies. This database is accessible via the worldwide web (http://www.pasteur.fr/units/neubiomol/LGIC.h tml), where it is continuously updated. A downloadable version is also available [currently v0.1 (98.06)].

  19. Carbon-based ion and molecular channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sint, Kyaw; Wang, Boyang; Kral, Petr

    2008-03-01

    We design ion and molecular channels based on layered carboneous materials, with chemically-functionalized pore entrances. Our molecular dynamics simulations demonstrate that these ultra-narrow pores, with diameters around 1 nm, are highly selective to the charges and sizes of the passing (Na^+ and Cl^-) ions and short alkanes. We demonstrate that the molecular flows through these pores can be easily controlled by electrical and mechanical means. These artificial pores could be integrated in fluidic nanodevices and lab-on-a-chip techniques with numerous potential applications. [1] Kyaw Sint, Boyang Wang and Petr Kral, submitted. [2] Boyang Wang and Petr Kral, JACS 128, 15984 (2006).

  20. Mechanosensitive Ion Channels in Cardiovascular Physiology

    PubMed Central

    Teng, Jinfeng; Loukin, Steve; Kung, Ching

    2014-01-01

    EC coupling is subjected to a mechanical feedback, which originates from physical force-sensing ion channels in the pericardium and elsewhere. Reviewed here are the most recent developments that greatly advanced our understanding of these mechanosensitive (MS) channels, including TRPs and K2p’s. Patch clamp has continued to demonstrate the direct channel activation by membrane stretch. Crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy have revealed the structures of several MS channels at atomic resolution. Some have been purified to homogeneity, reconstituted into lipid bilayer, and still retain their ability to respond to stretch force. A force-from-lipid (FFL) theory has been advanced that emphasizes the strong binding between channel proteins and lipids. Through these bonds, the sharp lateral tension (akin to surface tension) of the bilayer can transmit added force to the channel protein. Like temperature sensitivity, sensitivity to mechanical force is far more pervasive than we previously realize, and is especially important to the beating heart. PMID:26778915

  1. Endogenous ion channel complexes: the NMDA receptor.

    PubMed

    Frank, René A W

    2011-06-01

    Ionotropic receptors, including the NMDAR (N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor) mediate fast neurotransmission, neurodevelopment, neuronal excitability and learning. In the present article, the structure and function of the NMDAR is reviewed with the aim to condense our current understanding and highlight frontiers where important questions regarding the biology of this receptor remain unanswered. In the second part of the present review, new biochemical and genetic approaches for the investigation of ion channel receptor complexes will be discussed.

  2. Ion permeation in K⁺ channels occurs by direct Coulomb knock-on.

    PubMed

    Köpfer, David A; Song, Chen; Gruene, Tim; Sheldrick, George M; Zachariae, Ulrich; de Groot, Bert L

    2014-10-17

    Potassium channels selectively conduct K(+) ions across cellular membranes with extraordinary efficiency. Their selectivity filter exhibits four binding sites with approximately equal electron density in crystal structures with high K(+) concentrations, previously thought to reflect a superposition of alternating ion- and water-occupied states. Consequently, cotranslocation of ions with water has become a widely accepted ion conduction mechanism for potassium channels. By analyzing more than 1300 permeation events from molecular dynamics simulations at physiological voltages, we observed instead that permeation occurs via ion-ion contacts between neighboring K(+) ions. Coulomb repulsion between adjacent ions is found to be the key to high-efficiency K(+) conduction. Crystallographic data are consistent with directly neighboring K(+) ions in the selectivity filter, and our model offers an intuitive explanation for the high throughput rates of K(+) channels.

  3. Dynamics of ponderomotive ion acceleration in a laser-plasma channel

    SciTech Connect

    Kovalev, V. F.; Bychenkov, V. Yu.

    2015-04-15

    Analytical solution to the Cauchy problem for the kinetic equation describing the radial acceleration of ions under the action of the ponderomotive force of a laser beam undergoing guided propagation in transparent plasma is constructed. Spatial and temporal dependences of the ion distribution function and the integral ion characteristics, such as the density, average velocity, and energy spectrum, are obtained for an axisymmetric laser-plasma channel. The formation of a density peak near the channel boundary and the effect of ion flow breaking for a quasi-stationary laser beam are described analytically.

  4. [Preeclampsia, cellular migration and ion channels].

    PubMed

    Del Mónaco, Silvana M; Marino, Gabriela; Assef, Yanina; Kotsias, Basilio A

    2008-01-01

    The syncytiotrophoblast acts in human placenta as a transporting barrier regulating the transference of nutrients, solutes and water between maternal and fetal blood. This transepithelial transport involves movement of Na+ and its contribution to the osmotic pressure is an important determinant of the extracellular fluid volume. ENaC is a channel that mediates entry of Na+ from the luminal fluid into the cells in many reabsorbing epithelia; it is aldosterone, vasopressin, insulin and catecholamine-inducible, modulated by estrogens and progesterone and blocked by amiloride and its analogs. Multiple proteases are involved in the proteolytic processing and activation of ENaC subunits and aldosterone alters the protease-protease inhibitors balance. ENaC is also expressed in human placenta; although its function is not well known, the Na+ conductive properties may participate in electrolyte and extracellular volume homeostasis. The activity of ENaC channels and other ion channels and transporters is regulated by the state of actin filaments; on the other hand, changes in volume influence the actin cytoskeleton. Thus, there is an interaction between ENaC and components of the apical membrane cytoskeleton. In addition to their role in cellular homeostasis and electrical properties, Na+ currents through ENaC and other sodium channels are involved in cell migration, well documented in normal and cancer cells. In this work we presented evidences supporting the hypothesis that ENaC channels are required for the migration of BeWo cells, a human hormone-synthesizing trophoblastic cell line that express the three subunits of the ENaC channels. BeWo cell line has also been used as a model to investigate the placental transport mechanisms. PMID:18977715

  5. [Preeclampsia, cellular migration and ion channels].

    PubMed

    Del Mónaco, Silvana M; Marino, Gabriela; Assef, Yanina; Kotsias, Basilio A

    2008-01-01

    The syncytiotrophoblast acts in human placenta as a transporting barrier regulating the transference of nutrients, solutes and water between maternal and fetal blood. This transepithelial transport involves movement of Na+ and its contribution to the osmotic pressure is an important determinant of the extracellular fluid volume. ENaC is a channel that mediates entry of Na+ from the luminal fluid into the cells in many reabsorbing epithelia; it is aldosterone, vasopressin, insulin and catecholamine-inducible, modulated by estrogens and progesterone and blocked by amiloride and its analogs. Multiple proteases are involved in the proteolytic processing and activation of ENaC subunits and aldosterone alters the protease-protease inhibitors balance. ENaC is also expressed in human placenta; although its function is not well known, the Na+ conductive properties may participate in electrolyte and extracellular volume homeostasis. The activity of ENaC channels and other ion channels and transporters is regulated by the state of actin filaments; on the other hand, changes in volume influence the actin cytoskeleton. Thus, there is an interaction between ENaC and components of the apical membrane cytoskeleton. In addition to their role in cellular homeostasis and electrical properties, Na+ currents through ENaC and other sodium channels are involved in cell migration, well documented in normal and cancer cells. In this work we presented evidences supporting the hypothesis that ENaC channels are required for the migration of BeWo cells, a human hormone-synthesizing trophoblastic cell line that express the three subunits of the ENaC channels. BeWo cell line has also been used as a model to investigate the placental transport mechanisms.

  6. Flipping the Photoswitch: Ion Channels Under Light Control.

    PubMed

    McKenzie, Catherine K; Sanchez-Romero, Inmaculada; Janovjak, Harald

    2015-01-01

    Nature has incorporated small photochromic molecules, colloquially termed 'photoswitches', in photoreceptor proteins to sense optical cues in phototaxis and vision. While Nature's ability to employ light-responsive functionalities has long been recognized, it was not until recently that scientists designed, synthesized and applied synthetic photochromes to manipulate many of which open rapidly and locally in their native cell types, biological processes with the temporal and spatial resolution of light. Ion channels in particular have come to the forefront of proteins that can be put under the designer control of synthetic photochromes. Photochromic ion channel controllers are comprised of three classes, photochromic soluble ligands (PCLs), photochromic tethered ligands (PTLs) and photochromic crosslinkers (PXs), and in each class ion channel functionality is controlled through reversible changes in photochrome structure. By acting as light-dependent ion channel agonists, antagonist or modulators, photochromic controllers effectively converted a wide range of ion channels, including voltage-gated ion channels, 'leak channels', tri-, tetra- and pentameric ligand-gated ion channels, and temperature-sensitive ion channels, into man-made photoreceptors. Control by photochromes can be reversible, unlike in the case of 'caged' compounds, and non-invasive with high spatial precision, unlike pharmacology and electrical manipulation. Here, we introduce design principles of emerging photochromic molecules that act on ion channels and discuss the impact that these molecules are beginning to have on ion channel biophysics and neuronal physiology.

  7. Acid-sensing ion channels under hypoxia

    PubMed Central

    Yingjun, Guo; Xun, Qu

    2013-01-01

    Hypoxia represents the lack of oxygen below the basic level, and the range of known channels related to hypoxia is continually increasing. Since abnormal hypoxia initiates pathological processes in numerous diseases via, to a great degree, producing acidic microenvironment, the significance of these channels in this environment has, until now, remained completely unknown. However, recent discovery of acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) have enhanced our understanding of the hypoxic channelome. They belong to the degenerin/epithelial Na+ channel family and function once extracellular pH decreases to a certain level. So does the ratiocination emerge that ASICs participate in many hypoxia-induced pathological processes, including pain, apoptosis, malignancy, which all appear to involve them. Since evidence suggests that activity of ASICs is altered under pathological hypoxia, future studies are needed to deeply explore the relationship between ASICs and hypoxia, which may provide a progressive understanding of hypoxic effects in cancer, arthritis, intervertebral disc degeneration, ischemic brain injury and so on. PMID:23764948

  8. Structure and selectivity in bestrophin ion channels

    DOE PAGES

    Yang, Tingting; Liu, Qun; Kloss, Brian; Bruni, Renato; Kalathur, Ravi C.; Guo, Youzhong; Kloppmann, Edda; Rost, Burkhard; Colecraft, Henry M.; Hendrickson, Wayne A.

    2014-09-25

    Human bestrophin 1 (hBest1) is a calcium-activated chloride channel from the retinal pigment epithelium, where it can suffer mutations associated with vitelliform macular degeneration, or Best disease. We describe the structure of a bacterial homolog (KpBest) of hBest1 and functional characterizations of both channels. KpBest is a pentamer that forms a five-helix transmembrane pore, closed by three rings of conserved hydrophobic residues, and has a cytoplasmic cavern with a restricted exit. From electrophysiological analysis of structure-inspired mutations in KpBest and hBest1, we find a subtle control of ion selectivity in the bestrophins, including reversal of anion/cation selectivity, and dramatic activationmore » by mutations at the exit restriction. Lastly, a homology model of hBest1 shows the locations of disease-causing mutations and suggests possible roles in regulation.« less

  9. Structure and selectivity in bestrophin ion channels

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Tingting; Liu, Qun; Kloss, Brian; Bruni, Renato; Kalathur, Ravi C.; Guo, Youzhong; Kloppmann, Edda; Rost, Burkhard; Colecraft, Henry M.; Hendrickson, Wayne A.

    2014-09-25

    Human bestrophin 1 (hBest1) is a calcium-activated chloride channel from the retinal pigment epithelium, where it can suffer mutations associated with vitelliform macular degeneration, or Best disease. We describe the structure of a bacterial homolog (KpBest) of hBest1 and functional characterizations of both channels. KpBest is a pentamer that forms a five-helix transmembrane pore, closed by three rings of conserved hydrophobic residues, and has a cytoplasmic cavern with a restricted exit. From electrophysiological analysis of structure-inspired mutations in KpBest and hBest1, we find a subtle control of ion selectivity in the bestrophins, including reversal of anion/cation selectivity, and dramatic activation by mutations at the exit restriction. Lastly, a homology model of hBest1 shows the locations of disease-causing mutations and suggests possible roles in regulation.

  10. Gated Ion Channel-Based Biosensor Device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Separovic, Frances; Cornell, Bruce A.

    A biosensor device based on the ion channel gramicidin A (gA) incorporated into a bilayer membrane is described. This generic immunosensing device utilizes gA coupled to an antibody and assembled in a lipid membrane. The membrane is chemically tethered to a gold electrode, which reports on changes in the ionic conduction of the lipid bilayer. Binding of a target molecule in the bathing solution to the antibody causes the gramicidin channels to switch from predominantly conducting dimers to predominantly nonconducting monomers. Conventional a.c. impedance spectroscopy between the gold and a counter electrode in the bathing solution is used to measure changes in the ionic conductivity of the membrane. This approach permits the quantitative detection of a range of target species, including bacteria, proteins, toxins, DNA sequences, and drug molecules.

  11. High temperature ion channels and pores

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kang, Xiaofeng (Inventor); Gu, Li Qun (Inventor); Cheley, Stephen (Inventor); Bayley, Hagan (Inventor)

    2011-01-01

    The present invention includes an apparatus, system and method for stochastic sensing of an analyte to a protein pore. The protein pore may be an engineer protein pore, such as an ion channel at temperatures above 55.degree. C. and even as high as near 100.degree. C. The analyte may be any reactive analyte, including chemical weapons, environmental toxins and pharmaceuticals. The analyte covalently bonds to the sensor element to produce a detectable electrical current signal. Possible signals include change in electrical current. Detection of the signal allows identification of the analyte and determination of its concentration in a sample solution. Multiple analytes present in the same solution may also be detected.

  12. Potassium Versus Sodium Selectivity in Monovalent Ion Channel Selectivity Filters.

    PubMed

    Lim, Carmay; Dudev, Todor

    2016-01-01

    Transport of Na(+) and K(+) ions across the cell membrane is carried out by specialized pore-forming ion channel proteins, which exert tight control on electrical signals in cells by regulating the inward/outward flow of the respective cation. As Na(+) and K(+) ions are both present in the body fluids, their respective ion channels should discriminate with high fidelity between the two competing metal ions, conducting the native cation while rejecting its monovalent contender (and other ions present in the cellular/extracellular milieu). Indeed, monovalent ion channels are characterized by remarkable metal selectivity. This striking ion selectivity of monovalent ion channels is astonishing in view of the close similarity between Na(+) and K(+): both are spherical alkali cations with the same charge, analogous chemical and physical properties, and similar ionic radii. The monovalent ion channel selectivity filters (SFs), which dictate the selectivity of the channel, differ in oligomericity, composition, overall charge, pore size, and solvent accessibility. This diversity of SFs raises the following intriguing questions: (1) What factors govern the metal competition in these SFs? (2) Which of these factors are exploited in achieving K(+) or Na(+) selectivity in the different types of monovalent channel SFs? These questions are addressed herein by summarizing results from recent studies. The results show that over billions of years of evolution, the SFs of potassium and sodium ion channels have adapted to the specific physicochemical properties of the cognate ion, using various strategies to enable them to efficiently select the native ion among its contenders.

  13. Theory of the ion-channel laser

    SciTech Connect

    Whittum, D.H.

    1990-09-01

    A relativistic electron beam propagating through a plasma in the ion-focussed regime exhibits an electromagnetic instability with peak growth rate near a resonant frequency {omega}{approximately}2 {gamma}{sup 2} {omega}{beta}, where {gamma} is the Lorentz factor and {omega}{beta} is the betatron frequency. The physical basis for this instability is that an ensemble of relativistic simple harmonic oscillators, weakly driven by an electromagnetic wave, will lose energy to the wave through axial bunching. This bunching'' corresponds to the development of an rf component in the beam current, and a coherent centroid oscillation. The subject of this thesis is the theory of a laser capitalizing on this electromagnetic instability. A historical perspective is offered. The basic features of relativistic electron beam propagation in the ion-focussed regime are reviewed. The ion-channel laser (ICL) instability is explored theoretically through an eikonal formalism, analgous to the KMR'' formalism for the free-electron laser (FEL). The dispersion relation is derived, and the dependence of growth rate on three key parameters is explored. Finite temperature effects are assessed. From this work it is found that the typical gain length for amplification is longer than the Rayleigh length and we go on to consider three mechanisms which will tend to guide waveguide. First, we consider the effect of the ion channel as a dielectric waveguide. We consider next the use of a conducting waveguide, appropriate for a microwave amplifier. Finally, we examine a form of optical guiding'' analgous to that found in the FEL. The eikonal formalism is used to model numerically the instability through and beyond saturation. Results are compared with the numerical simulation of the full equations of motion, and with the analytic scalings. The analytical requirement on detuning spread is confirmed.

  14. Single-Molecule Ion Channel Conformational Dynamics in Living Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lu, H. Peter

    2014-03-01

    Stochastic and inhomogeneous conformational changes regulate the function and dynamics of ion channels that are crucial for cell functions, neuronal signaling, and brain functions. Such complexity makes it difficult, if not impossible, to characterize ion channel dynamics using conventional electrical recording alone since that the measurement does not specifically interrogate the associated conformational changes but rather the consequences of the conformational changes. Recently, new technology developments on single-molecule spectroscopy, and especially, the combined approaches of using single ion channel patch-clamp electrical recording and single-molecule fluorescence imaging have provided us the capability of probing ion channel conformational changes simultaneously with the electrical single channel recording. By combining real-time single-molecule fluorescence imaging measurements with real-time single-channel electric current measurements in artificial lipid bilayers and in living cell membranes, we were able to probe single ion-channel-protein conformational changes simultaneously, and thus providing an understanding the dynamics and mechanism of ion-channel proteins at the molecular level. The function-regulating and site-specific conformational changes of ion channels are now measurable under physiological conditions in real-time, one molecule at a time. We will focus our discussion on the new development and results of real-time imaging of the dynamics of gramicidin, colicin, and NMDA receptor ion channels in lipid bilayers and living cells. Our results shed light on new perspectives of the intrinsic interplay of lipid membrane dynamics, solvation dynamics, and the ion channel functions.

  15. Ion channels, phosphorylation and mammalian sperm capacitation.

    PubMed

    Visconti, Pablo E; Krapf, Dario; de la Vega-Beltrán, José Luis; Acevedo, Juan José; Darszon, Alberto

    2011-05-01

    Sexually reproducing animals require an orchestrated communication between spermatozoa and the egg to generate a new individual. Capacitation, a maturational complex phenomenon that occurs in the female reproductive tract, renders spermatozoa capable of binding and fusing with the oocyte, and it is a requirement for mammalian fertilization. Capacitation encompasses plasma membrane reorganization, ion permeability regulation, cholesterol loss and changes in the phosphorylation state of many proteins. Novel tools to study sperm ion channels, image intracellular ionic changes and proteins with better spatial and temporal resolution, are unraveling how modifications in sperm ion transport and phosphorylation states lead to capacitation. Recent evidence indicates that two parallel pathways regulate phosphorylation events leading to capacitation, one of them requiring activation of protein kinase A and the second one involving inactivation of ser/thr phosphatases. This review examines the involvement of ion transporters and phosphorylation signaling processes needed for spermatozoa to achieve capacitation. Understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to fertilization is central for societies to deal with rising male infertility rates, to develop safe male gamete-based contraceptives and to preserve biodiversity through better assisted fertilization strategies.

  16. Ion channels, phosphorylation and mammalian sperm capacitation

    PubMed Central

    Visconti, Pablo E; Krapf, Dario; de la Vega-Beltrán, José Luis; Acevedo, Juan José; Darszon, Alberto

    2011-01-01

    Sexually reproducing animals require an orchestrated communication between spermatozoa and the egg to generate a new individual. Capacitation, a maturational complex phenomenon that occurs in the female reproductive tract, renders spermatozoa capable of binding and fusing with the oocyte, and it is a requirement for mammalian fertilization. Capacitation encompasses plasma membrane reorganization, ion permeability regulation, cholesterol loss and changes in the phosphorylation state of many proteins. Novel tools to study sperm ion channels, image intracellular ionic changes and proteins with better spatial and temporal resolution, are unraveling how modifications in sperm ion transport and phosphorylation states lead to capacitation. Recent evidence indicates that two parallel pathways regulate phosphorylation events leading to capacitation, one of them requiring activation of protein kinase A and the second one involving inactivation of ser/thr phosphatases. This review examines the involvement of ion transporters and phosphorylation signaling processes needed for spermatozoa to achieve capacitation. Understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to fertilization is central for societies to deal with rising male infertility rates, to develop safe male gamete-based contraceptives and to preserve biodiversity through better assisted fertilization strategies. PMID:21540868

  17. Kinetics of ion transport through supramolecular channels in single crystals.

    PubMed

    Assouma, Cyrille D; Crochet, Aurélien; Chérémond, Yvens; Giese, Bernd; Fromm, Katharina M

    2013-04-22

    Single-crystal to single-crystal transformations are possible by ion-exchange and transport reactions through supramolecular channels that are composed of crown ether molecules and use trihalide ions as scaffolds. Kinetic measurements of ion transport at different temperatures provide activation energy data and show that a very fast exchange of K(+) ions with Na(+) ions occurs.

  18. Na+ Channel β Subunits: Overachievers of the Ion Channel Family

    PubMed Central

    Brackenbury, William J.; Isom, Lori L.

    2011-01-01

    Voltage-gated Na+ channels (VGSCs) in mammals contain a pore-forming α subunit and one or more β subunits. There are five mammalian β subunits in total: β1, β1B, β2, β3, and β4, encoded by four genes: SCN1B–SCN4B. With the exception of the SCN1B splice variant, β1B, the β subunits are type I topology transmembrane proteins. In contrast, β1B lacks a transmembrane domain and is a secreted protein. A growing body of work shows that VGSC β subunits are multifunctional. While they do not form the ion channel pore, β subunits alter gating, voltage-dependence, and kinetics of VGSCα subunits and thus regulate cellular excitability in vivo. In addition to their roles in channel modulation, β subunits are members of the immunoglobulin superfamily of cell adhesion molecules and regulate cell adhesion and migration. β subunits are also substrates for sequential proteolytic cleavage by secretases. An example of the multifunctional nature of β subunits is β1, encoded by SCN1B, that plays a critical role in neuronal migration and pathfinding during brain development, and whose function is dependent on Na+ current and γ-secretase activity. Functional deletion of SCN1B results in Dravet Syndrome, a severe and intractable pediatric epileptic encephalopathy. β subunits are emerging as key players in a wide variety of physiopathologies, including epilepsy, cardiac arrhythmia, multiple sclerosis, Huntington’s disease, neuropsychiatric disorders, neuropathic and inflammatory pain, and cancer. β subunits mediate multiple signaling pathways on different timescales, regulating electrical excitability, adhesion, migration, pathfinding, and transcription. Importantly, some β subunit functions may operate independently of α subunits. Thus, β subunits perform critical roles during development and disease. As such, they may prove useful in disease diagnosis and therapy. PMID:22007171

  19. Acid-sensing ion channels and transient-receptor potential ion channels in zebrafish taste buds.

    PubMed

    Levanti, M; Randazzo, B; Viña, E; Montalbano, G; Garcia-Suarez, O; Germanà, A; Vega, J A; Abbate, F

    2016-09-01

    Sensory information from the environment is required for life and survival, and it is detected by specialized cells which together make up the sensory system. The fish sensory system includes specialized organs that are able to detect mechanical and chemical stimuli. In particular, taste buds are small organs located on the tongue in terrestrial vertebrates that function in the perception of taste. In fish, taste buds occur on the lips, the flanks, and the caudal (tail) fins of some species and on the barbels of others. In fish taste receptor cells, different classes of ion channels have been detected which, like in mammals, presumably participate in the detection and/or transduction of chemical gustatory signals. However, since some of these ion channels are involved in the detection of additional sensory modalities, it can be hypothesized that taste cells sense stimuli other than those specific for taste. This mini-review summarizes current knowledge on the presence of transient-receptor potential (TRP) and acid-sensing (ASIC) ion channels in the taste buds of teleosts, especially adult zebrafish. Up to now ASIC4, TRPC2, TRPA1, TRPV1 and TRPV4 ion channels have been found in the sensory cells, while ASIC2 was detected in the nerves supplying the taste buds. PMID:27513962

  20. Microvillar ion channels: cytoskeletal modulation of ion fluxes.

    PubMed

    Lange, K

    2000-10-21

    The recently presented theory of microvillar Ca(2+)signaling [Lange, K. (1999) J. Cell. Physiol.180, 19-35], combined with Manning's theory of "condensed counterions" in linear polyelectrolytes [Manning, G. S. (1969). J. Chem. Phys.51, 924-931] and the finding of cable-like ion conductance in actin filaments [Lin, E. C. & Cantiello, H. F. (1993). Biophys. J.65, 1371-1378], allows a systematic interpretation of the role of the actin cytoskeleton in ion channel regulation. Ion conduction through actin filament bundles of microvilli exhibits unique nonlinear transmission properties some of which closely resemble that of electronic semiconductors: (1) bundles of microfilaments display significant resistance to cation conduction and (2) this resistance is decreased by supply of additional energy either as thermal, mechanical or electromagnetic field energy. Other transmission properties, however, are unique for ionic conduction in polyelectrolytes. (1) Current pulses injected into the filaments were transformed into oscillating currents or even into several discrete charge pulses closely resembling that of single-channel recordings. Discontinuous transmission is due to the existence of counterion clouds along the fixed anionic charge centers of the polymer, each acting as an "ionic capacitor". (2) The conductivity of linear polyelectrolytes strongly decreases with the charge number of the counterions; thus, Ca(2+)and Mg(2+)are effective modulator of charge transfer through linear polyelectrolytes. Field-dependent formation of divalent cation plugs on either side of the microvillar conduction line may generate the characteristic gating behavior of cation channels. (3) Mechanical movement of actin filament bundles, e.g. bending of hair cell microvilli, generates charge translocations along the filament structure (mechano-electrical coupling). (4) Energy of external fields, by inducing molecular dipoles within the polyelectrolyte matrix, can be transformed into mechanical

  1. Overcharging below the nanoscale: Multivalent cations reverse the ion selectivity of a biological channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Giménez, Elena; Alcaraz, Antonio; Aguilella, Vicente M.

    2010-02-01

    We report charge inversion within a nanoscopic biological protein ion channel in salts of multivalent ions. The presence of positive divalent and trivalent counterions reverses the cationic selectivity of the OmpF channel, a general diffusion porin located in the outer membrane of E. coli. We discuss the conditions under which charge inversion can be inferred from the change in sign of the measured quantity, the channel zero current potential. By comparing experimental results in protein channels whose charge has been modified after site-directed mutagenesis, the predictions of current theories of charge inversion are critically examined. It is emphasized that charge inversion does not necessarily increase with the bare surface charge density of the interface and that even this concept of surface charge density may become meaningless in some biological ion channels. Thus, any theory based on electrostatic correlations or chemical binding should explicitly take into account the particular structure of the charged interface.

  2. The effect of cell size and channel density on neuronal information encoding and energy efficiency

    PubMed Central

    Sengupta, Biswa; Faisal, A Aldo; Laughlin, Simon B; Niven, Jeremy E

    2013-01-01

    Identifying the determinants of neuronal energy consumption and their relationship to information coding is critical to understanding neuronal function and evolution. Three of the main determinants are cell size, ion channel density, and stimulus statistics. Here we investigate their impact on neuronal energy consumption and information coding by comparing single-compartment spiking neuron models of different sizes with different densities of stochastic voltage-gated Na+ and K+ channels and different statistics of synaptic inputs. The largest compartments have the highest information rates but the lowest energy efficiency for a given voltage-gated ion channel density, and the highest signaling efficiency (bits spike−1) for a given firing rate. For a given cell size, our models revealed that the ion channel density that maximizes energy efficiency is lower than that maximizing information rate. Low rates of small synaptic inputs improve energy efficiency but the highest information rates occur with higher rates and larger inputs. These relationships produce a Law of Diminishing Returns that penalizes costly excess information coding capacity, promoting the reduction of cell size, channel density, and input stimuli to the minimum possible, suggesting that the trade-off between energy and information has influenced all aspects of neuronal anatomy and physiology. PMID:23778164

  3. The effect of cell size and channel density on neuronal information encoding and energy efficiency.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Biswa; Faisal, A Aldo; Laughlin, Simon B; Niven, Jeremy E

    2013-09-01

    Identifying the determinants of neuronal energy consumption and their relationship to information coding is critical to understanding neuronal function and evolution. Three of the main determinants are cell size, ion channel density, and stimulus statistics. Here we investigate their impact on neuronal energy consumption and information coding by comparing single-compartment spiking neuron models of different sizes with different densities of stochastic voltage-gated Na(+) and K(+) channels and different statistics of synaptic inputs. The largest compartments have the highest information rates but the lowest energy efficiency for a given voltage-gated ion channel density, and the highest signaling efficiency (bits spike(-1)) for a given firing rate. For a given cell size, our models revealed that the ion channel density that maximizes energy efficiency is lower than that maximizing information rate. Low rates of small synaptic inputs improve energy efficiency but the highest information rates occur with higher rates and larger inputs. These relationships produce a Law of Diminishing Returns that penalizes costly excess information coding capacity, promoting the reduction of cell size, channel density, and input stimuli to the minimum possible, suggesting that the trade-off between energy and information has influenced all aspects of neuronal anatomy and physiology.

  4. Plant Ion Channels: Gene Families, Physiology, and Functional Genomics Analyses

    PubMed Central

    Ward, John M.; Mäser, Pascal; Schroeder, Julian I.

    2016-01-01

    Distinct potassium, anion, and calcium channels in the plasma membrane and vacuolar membrane of plant cells have been identified and characterized by patch clamping. Primarily owing to advances in Arabidopsis genetics and genomics, and yeast functional complementation, many of the corresponding genes have been identified. Recent advances in our understanding of ion channel genes that mediate signal transduction and ion transport are discussed here. Some plant ion channels, for example, ALMT and SLAC anion channel subunits, are unique. The majority of plant ion channel families exhibit homology to animal genes; such families include both hyperpolarization-and depolarization-activated Shaker-type potassium channels, CLC chloride transporters/channels, cyclic nucleotide–gated channels, and ionotropic glutamate receptor homologs. These plant ion channels offer unique opportunities to analyze the structural mechanisms and functions of ion channels. Here we review gene families of selected plant ion channel classes and discuss unique structure-function aspects and their physiological roles in plant cell signaling and transport. PMID:18842100

  5. Chapter Five - Ubiquitination of Ion Channels and Transporters.

    PubMed

    Lamothe, S M; Zhang, S

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels and transporters play essential roles in excitable cells including cardiac, skeletal, and smooth muscle cells, neurons, and endocrine cells. Their dysfunction underlies the pathology of various diseases. Thus, the tight regulation of these transmembrane proteins is essential for cell physiology. While the ubiquitin system is involved in many aspects of cellular processes, this chapter focuses on the ubiquitin-mediated degradation of ion channels and transporters. Ubiquitination of ion channels and transporters is multifaceted and occurs at various cellular compartments such as the plasma membrane and the endoplasmic reticulum. While various molecules are involved in the ubiquitination of ion channels and transporters, E3 ubiquitin ligases play a central role in selectively targeting substrates for ubiquitination and will be a major focus in this chapter. To date, the Nedd4 family of E3 ubiquitin ligases and their regulations of ion channels and transporters have been extensively studied. In this chapter, we will first review Nedd4/Nedd4-2 and their regulations. We will then discuss how E3 ubiquitin ligases, especially Nedd4-2, regulate various ion channels and transporters including epithelial Na(+) channels, voltage-gated Na(+) channels, KCNQ and hERG K(+) channels, Cl(-) channels such as CFTR, transporters such as Na(+)/K(+) ATPase, and gap junctions. Furthermore, diseases caused by improper ubiquitination of ion channels and transporters will be discussed to highlight the process of ubiquitination and its biological as well as clinical significance. PMID:27378758

  6. Chapter Five - Ubiquitination of Ion Channels and Transporters.

    PubMed

    Lamothe, S M; Zhang, S

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels and transporters play essential roles in excitable cells including cardiac, skeletal, and smooth muscle cells, neurons, and endocrine cells. Their dysfunction underlies the pathology of various diseases. Thus, the tight regulation of these transmembrane proteins is essential for cell physiology. While the ubiquitin system is involved in many aspects of cellular processes, this chapter focuses on the ubiquitin-mediated degradation of ion channels and transporters. Ubiquitination of ion channels and transporters is multifaceted and occurs at various cellular compartments such as the plasma membrane and the endoplasmic reticulum. While various molecules are involved in the ubiquitination of ion channels and transporters, E3 ubiquitin ligases play a central role in selectively targeting substrates for ubiquitination and will be a major focus in this chapter. To date, the Nedd4 family of E3 ubiquitin ligases and their regulations of ion channels and transporters have been extensively studied. In this chapter, we will first review Nedd4/Nedd4-2 and their regulations. We will then discuss how E3 ubiquitin ligases, especially Nedd4-2, regulate various ion channels and transporters including epithelial Na(+) channels, voltage-gated Na(+) channels, KCNQ and hERG K(+) channels, Cl(-) channels such as CFTR, transporters such as Na(+)/K(+) ATPase, and gap junctions. Furthermore, diseases caused by improper ubiquitination of ion channels and transporters will be discussed to highlight the process of ubiquitination and its biological as well as clinical significance.

  7. Computer-Aided Drug Discovery and Design Targeting Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qiansen; Gao, Zhaobing; Yang, Huaiyu

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels are widely expressed in living cells and play critical roles in various cellular biological functions. Dysfunctional ion channels can cause a variety of diseases, making ion channels attractive targets for drug discovery. Computational approaches, such as molecular docking and molecular dynamic simulations, provide economic and efficient tools for finding modulators of ion channels and for elucidating the action mechanisms of small molecules. In this review, we focus primarily on four types of ion channels (voltage-gated, ligand-gated, acid-sensing, and virus matrix 2 ion channels). The current advancements in computer-aided drug discovery and design targeting ion channels are summarized. First, ligand-based studies for drug design are briefly outlined. Then, we focus on the structurebased studies targeting pore domains, endogenous binding sites and allosteric sites of ion channels. Moreover, we also review the contribution of computational methods to the field of ligand binding and unbinding pathways of ion channels. Finally, we propose future developments for the field. PMID:26975507

  8. Ion channels and the control of blood pressure

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Emma H

    2000-01-01

    Ion channels exist in all cells and are enormously varied in structure, function and regulation. Some progress has been made in understanding the role that ion channels play in the control of blood pressure, but the discipline is still in its infancy. Ion channels provide many different targets for intervention in disorders of blood pressure and exciting advances have been made in this field. It is possible that new drugs, as well as antisense nucleotide technology or gene therapy directed towards ion channels, may form a new class of treatments for high and low blood pressure in the future. PMID:10718773

  9. Channelpedia: An Integrative and Interactive Database for Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Ranjan, Rajnish; Khazen, Georges; Gambazzi, Luca; Ramaswamy, Srikanth; Hill, Sean L.; Schürmann, Felix; Markram, Henry

    2011-01-01

    Ion channels are membrane proteins that selectively conduct ions across the cell membrane. The flux of ions through ion channels drives electrical and biochemical processes in cells and plays a critical role in shaping the electrical properties of neurons. During the past three decades, extensive research has been carried out to characterize the molecular, structural, and biophysical properties of ion channels. This research has begun to elucidate the role of ion channels in neuronal function and has subsequently led to the development of computational models of ion channel function. Although there have been substantial efforts to consolidate these findings into easily accessible and coherent online resources, a single comprehensive resource is still lacking. The success of these initiatives has been hindered by the sheer diversity of approaches and the variety in data formats. Here, we present “Channelpedia” (http://channelpedia.net), which is designed to store information related to ion channels and models and is characterized by an efficient information management framework. Composed of a combination of a database and a wiki-like discussion platform Channelpedia allows researchers to collaborate and synthesize ion channel information from literature. Equipped to automatically update references, Channelpedia integrates and highlights recent publications with relevant information in the database. It is web based, freely accessible and currently contains 187 annotated ion channels with 45 Hodgkin–Huxley models. PMID:22232598

  10. Modeling the Influence of Ion Channels on Neuron Dynamics in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Berger, Sandra D.; Crook, Sharon M.

    2015-01-01

    Voltage gated ion channels play a major role in determining a neuron's firing behavior, resulting in the specific processing of synaptic input patterns. Drosophila and other invertebrates provide valuable model systems for investigating ion channel kinetics and their impact on firing properties. Despite the increasing importance of Drosophila as a model system, few computational models of its ion channel kinetics have been developed. In this study, experimentally observed biophysical properties of voltage gated ion channels from the fruitfly Drosophila melanogaster are used to develop a minimal, conductance based neuron model. We investigate the impact of the densities of these channels on the excitability of the model neuron. Changing the channel densities reproduces different in situ observed firing patterns and induces a switch from integrator to resonator properties. Further, we analyze the preference to input frequency and how it depends on the channel densities and the resulting bifurcation type the system undergoes. An extension to a three dimensional model demonstrates that the inactivation kinetics of the sodium channels play an important role, allowing for firing patterns with a delayed first spike and subsequent high frequency firing as often observed in invertebrates, without altering the kinetics of the delayed rectifier current. PMID:26635592

  11. DIAGNOSTICS FOR ION BEAM DRIVEN HIGH ENERGY DENSITY PHYSICS EXPERIMENTS

    SciTech Connect

    Bieniosek, F.M.; Henestroza, E.; Lidia, S.; Ni, P.A.

    2010-01-04

    Intense beams of heavy ions are capable of heating volumetric samples of matter to high energy density. Experiments are performed on the resulting warm dense matter (WDM) at the NDCX-I ion beam accelerator. The 0.3 MeV, 30-mA K{sup +} beam from NDCX-I heats foil targets by combined longitudinal and transverse neutralized drift compression of the ion beam. Both the compressed and uncompressed parts of the NDCX-I beam heat targets. The exotic state of matter (WDM) in these experiments requires specialized diagnostic techniques. We have developed a target chamber and fielded target diagnostics including a fast multi-channel optical pyrometer, optical streak camera, laser Doppler-shift interferometer (VISAR), beam transmission diagnostics, and high-speed gated cameras. We also present plans and opportunities for diagnostic development and a new target chamber for NDCX-II.

  12. Bioinspired Artificial Sodium and Potassium Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Vázquez, Nuria; Fuertes, Alberto; Amorín, Manuel; Granja, Juan R

    2016-01-01

    In Nature, all biological systems present a high level of compartmentalization in order to carry out a wide variety of functions in a very specific way. Hence, they need ways to be connected with the environment for communication, homeostasis equilibrium, nutrition, waste elimination, etc. The biological membranes carry out these functions; they consist of physical insulating barriers constituted mainly by phospholipids. These amphipathic molecules spontaneously aggregate in water to form bilayers in which the polar groups are exposed to the aqueous media while the non-polar chains self-organize by aggregating to each other to stay away from the aqueous media. The insulating properties of membranes are due to the formation of a hydrophobic bilayer covered at both sides by the hydrophilic phosphate groups. Thus, lipophilic molecules can permeate the membrane freely, while the small charged or very hydrophilic molecules require the assistance of other membrane components in order to overcome the energetic cost implied in crossing the non-polar region of the bilayer. Most of the large polar species (such as oligosaccharides, polypeptides or nucleic acids) cross into and out of the cell via endocytosis and exocytosis, respectively. Nature has created a series of systems (carriers and pores) in order to control the balance of small hydrophilic molecules and ions. The most important structures to achieve these goals are the ionophoric proteins that include the channel proteins, such as the sodium and potassium channels, and ionic transporters, including the sodium/potassium pumps or calcium/sodium exchangers among others. Inspired by these, scientists have created non-natural synthetic transporting structures to mimic the natural systems. The progress in the last years has been remarkable regarding the efficient transport of Na(+) and K(+) ions, despite the fact that the selectivity and the ON/OFF state of the non-natural systems remain a present and future challenge

  13. Bioinspired Artificial Sodium and Potassium Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Vázquez, Nuria; Fuertes, Alberto; Amorín, Manuel; Granja, Juan R

    2016-01-01

    In Nature, all biological systems present a high level of compartmentalization in order to carry out a wide variety of functions in a very specific way. Hence, they need ways to be connected with the environment for communication, homeostasis equilibrium, nutrition, waste elimination, etc. The biological membranes carry out these functions; they consist of physical insulating barriers constituted mainly by phospholipids. These amphipathic molecules spontaneously aggregate in water to form bilayers in which the polar groups are exposed to the aqueous media while the non-polar chains self-organize by aggregating to each other to stay away from the aqueous media. The insulating properties of membranes are due to the formation of a hydrophobic bilayer covered at both sides by the hydrophilic phosphate groups. Thus, lipophilic molecules can permeate the membrane freely, while the small charged or very hydrophilic molecules require the assistance of other membrane components in order to overcome the energetic cost implied in crossing the non-polar region of the bilayer. Most of the large polar species (such as oligosaccharides, polypeptides or nucleic acids) cross into and out of the cell via endocytosis and exocytosis, respectively. Nature has created a series of systems (carriers and pores) in order to control the balance of small hydrophilic molecules and ions. The most important structures to achieve these goals are the ionophoric proteins that include the channel proteins, such as the sodium and potassium channels, and ionic transporters, including the sodium/potassium pumps or calcium/sodium exchangers among others. Inspired by these, scientists have created non-natural synthetic transporting structures to mimic the natural systems. The progress in the last years has been remarkable regarding the efficient transport of Na(+) and K(+) ions, despite the fact that the selectivity and the ON/OFF state of the non-natural systems remain a present and future challenge.

  14. Phenotype variation and newcomers in ion channel disorders.

    PubMed

    Bulman, D E

    1997-01-01

    Ion channels are part of a large family of macromolecules whose functions include the control and maintenance of electrical potential across cell membranes, secretion and signal transduction. Close inspection of the physiological processes involved in channel function and the secondary structure of various ion channels has served as a basis for subdividing ion channels into a number of superfamilies. The voltage-gated ion channels are one of these superfamilies. Recent work has shown that mutations in various ion channel genes are responsible for a number of neuromuscular and neurological disorders. Correlation of the various mutations with the clinical phenotype is providing us with insight into the pathophysiology of these channel proteins. Interestingly, different mutations within the same gene may cause quite distinct clinical disorders, while mutations in different channel genes may result in very similar phenotypes (genetic heterogeneity). Examples of phenotypic variation and genetic heterogeneity are presented in the context of the periodic paralytic disorders of skeletal muscle, episodic ataxia, migraine, long QT syndrome and paroxysmal dyskinesia. Some of these disorders are known to be caused by mutations in ion channel genes, while in the episodic movement disorders, ion channel genes are considered excellent candidate genes.

  15. United in Diversity: Mechanosensitive Ion Channels in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Hamilton, Eric S.; Schlegel, Angela M.; Haswell, Elizabeth S.

    2015-01-01

    Mechanosensitive (MS) ion channels are a common mechanism for perceiving and responding to mechanical force. This class of mechanoreceptors is capable of transducing membrane tension directly into ion flux. In plant systems, MS ion channels have been proposed to play a wide array of roles, from the perception of touch and gravity to the osmotic homeostasis of intracellular organelles. Three families of plant MS ion channels have been identified: the MscS-like (MSL), Mid1-complementing activity (MCA), and two-pore potassium (TPK) families. Channels from these families vary widely in structure and function, localize to multiple cellular compartments, and conduct chloride, calcium, and/or potassium ions. However, they are still likely to represent only a fraction of the MS ion channel diversity in plant systems. PMID:25494462

  16. Engineered ion channels as emerging tools for chemical biology.

    PubMed

    Mayer, Michael; Yang, Jerry

    2013-12-17

    Over the last 25 years, researchers have developed exogenously expressed, genetically engineered, semi-synthetic, and entirely synthetic ion channels. These structures have sufficient fidelity to serve as unique tools that can reveal information about living organisms. One of the most exciting success stories is optogenetics: the use of light-gated channels to trigger action potentials in specific neurons combined with studies of the response from networks of cells or entire live animals. Despite this breakthrough, the use of molecularly engineered ion channels for studies of biological systems is still in its infancy. Historically, researchers studied ion channels in the context of their own function in single cells or in multicellular signaling and regulation. Only recently have researchers considered ion channels and pore-forming peptides as responsive tools to report on the chemical and physical changes produced by other biochemical processes and reactions. This emerging class of molecular probes has a number of useful characteristics. For instance, these structures can greatly amplify the signal of chemical changes: the binding of one molecule to a ligand-gated ion channel can result in flux of millions of ions across a cell membrane. In addition, gating occurs on sub-microsecond time scales, resulting in fast response times. Moreover, the signal is complementary to existing techniques because the output is ionic current rather than fluorescence or radioactivity. And finally, ion channels are also localized at the membrane of cells where essential processes such as signaling and regulation take place. This Account highlights examples, mostly from our own work, of uses of ion channels and pore-forming peptides such as gramicidin in chemical biology. We discuss various strategies for preparing synthetically tailored ion channels that range from de novo designed synthetic molecules to genetically engineered or simply exogenously expressed or reconstituted wild

  17. Trails of Kilovolt Ions Created by Subsurface Channeling

    SciTech Connect

    Redinger, Alex; Standop, Sebastian; Michely, Thomas; Rosandi, Yudi; Urbassek, Herbert M.

    2010-02-19

    Using scanning tunneling microscopy, we observe the damage trails produced by keV noble-gas ions incident at glancing angles onto Pt(111). Surface vacancies and adatoms aligned along the ion trajectory constitute the ion trails. Atomistic simulations reveal that these straight trails are produced by nuclear (elastic) collisions with surface layer atoms during subsurface channeling of the projectiles. In a small energy window around 5 keV, Xe{sup +} ions create vacancy grooves that mark the ion trajectory with atomic precision. The asymmetry of the adatom production on the two sides of the projectile path is traced back to the asymmetry of the ion's subsurface channel.

  18. Current recordings of ion channel proteins immobilized on resin beads.

    PubMed

    Hirano, Minako; Takeuchi, Yuko; Aoki, Takaaki; Yanagida, Toshio; Ide, Toru

    2009-04-15

    Current ion channel current measurement techniques are cumbersome, as they require many steps and much time. This is especially true when reconstituting channels into liposomes and incorporating them into lipid bilayers. Here, we report a novel method that measures ion channel current more efficiently than current methods. We applied our method to KcsA and MthK channels by binding them to cobalt affinity gel beads with histidine tags and then forming a lipid bilayer membrane on the bead. This allowed channels to incorporate into the bilayer and channel currents to be measured quickly and easily. The efficiency was such that currents could be recorded with extremely low amounts of protein. In addition, the channel direction could be determined by the histidine tag. This method has the potential to be applied to various channel proteins and channel research in general.

  19. Energetics of ion conduction through the K+ channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernèche, Simon; Roux, Benoît

    2001-11-01

    K+ channels are transmembrane proteins that are essential for the transmission of nerve impulses. The ability of these proteins to conduct K+ ions at levels near the limit of diffusion is traditionally described in terms of concerted mechanisms in which ion-channel attraction and ion-ion repulsion have compensating effects, as several ions are moving simultaneously in single file through the narrow pore. The efficiency of such a mechanism, however, relies on a delicate energy balance-the strong ion-channel attraction must be perfectly counterbalanced by the electrostatic ion-ion repulsion. To elucidate the mechanism of ion conduction at the atomic level, we performed molecular dynamics free energy simulations on the basis of the X-ray structure of the KcsA K+ channel. Here we find that ion conduction involves transitions between two main states, with two and three K+ ions occupying the selectivity filter, respectively; this process is reminiscent of the `knock-on' mechanism proposed by Hodgkin and Keynes in 1955. The largest free energy barrier is on the order of 2-3kcalmol-1, implying that the process of ion conduction is limited by diffusion. Ion-ion repulsion, although essential for rapid conduction, is shown to act only at very short distances. The calculations show also that the rapidly conducting pore is selective.

  20. Potassium channels as multi-ion single-file pores

    PubMed Central

    1978-01-01

    A literature review reveals many lines of evidence that both delayed rectifier and inward rectifier potassium channels are multi-ion pores. These include unidirectional flux ratios given by the 2--2.5 power of the electrochemical activity ratio, very steeply voltage-dependent block with monovalent blocking ions, relief of block by permeant ions added to the side opposite from the blocking ion, rectification depending on E--EK, and a minimum in the reversal potential or conductance as external K+ ions are replaced by an equivalent concentration of T1+ ions. We consider a channel with a linear sequence of energy barriers and binding sites. The channel can be occupied by more than one ion at a time, and ions hop in single file into vacant sites with rate constants that depend on barrier heights, membrane potential, and interionic repulsion. Such multi-ion models reproduce qualitatively the special flux properties of potassium channels when the barriers for hopping out of the pore are larger than for hopping between sites within the pore and when there is repulsion between ions. These conditions also produce multiple maxima in the conductance-ion activity relationship. In agreement with Armstrong's hypothesis (1969. J. Gen. Physiol. 54:553--575), inward rectification may be understood in terms of block by an internal blocking cation. Potassium channels must have at least three sites and often contain at least two ions at a time. PMID:722275

  1. Ion channels enable electrical communication within bacterial communities

    PubMed Central

    Prindle, Arthur; Liu, Jintao; Asally, Munehiro; Ly, San; Garcia-Ojalvo, Jordi; Süel, Gürol M.

    2016-01-01

    The study of bacterial ion channels has provided fundamental insights into the structural basis of neuronal signaling. However, the native role of ion channels in bacteria has remained elusive. Here we show that ion channels conduct long-range electrical signals within bacterial biofilm communities through spatially propagating waves of potassium. These waves result from a positive feedback loop, in which a metabolic trigger induces release of intracellular potassium, which in turn depolarizes neighboring cells. Propagating through the biofilm, this wave of depolarization coordinates metabolic states among cells in the interior and periphery of the biofilm. Deletion of the potassium channel abolishes this response. As predicted by a mathematical model, we further show that spatial propagation can be hindered by specific genetic perturbations to potassium channel gating. Together, these results demonstrate a function for ion channels in bacterial biofilms, and provide a prokaryotic paradigm for active, long-range electrical signaling in cellular communities. PMID:26503040

  2. Ion channels enable electrical communication in bacterial communities.

    PubMed

    Prindle, Arthur; Liu, Jintao; Asally, Munehiro; Ly, San; Garcia-Ojalvo, Jordi; Süel, Gürol M

    2015-11-01

    The study of bacterial ion channels has provided fundamental insights into the structural basis of neuronal signalling; however, the native role of ion channels in bacteria has remained elusive. Here we show that ion channels conduct long-range electrical signals within bacterial biofilm communities through spatially propagating waves of potassium. These waves result from a positive feedback loop, in which a metabolic trigger induces release of intracellular potassium, which in turn depolarizes neighbouring cells. Propagating through the biofilm, this wave of depolarization coordinates metabolic states among cells in the interior and periphery of the biofilm. Deletion of the potassium channel abolishes this response. As predicted by a mathematical model, we further show that spatial propagation can be hindered by specific genetic perturbations to potassium channel gating. Together, these results demonstrate a function for ion channels in bacterial biofilms, and provide a prokaryotic paradigm for active, long-range electrical signalling in cellular communities. PMID:26503040

  3. Ion Channels in Obesity: Pathophysiology and Potential Therapeutic Targets

    PubMed Central

    Vasconcelos, Luiz H. C.; Souza, Iara L. L.; Pinheiro, Lílian S.; Silva, Bagnólia A.

    2016-01-01

    Obesity is a multifactorial disease related to metabolic disorders and associated with genetic determinants. Currently, ion channels activity has been linked to many of these disorders, in addition to the central regulation of food intake, energetic balance, hormone release and response, as well as the adipocyte cell proliferation. Therefore, the objective of this work is to review the current knowledge about the influence of ion channels in obesity development. This review used different sources of literature (Google Scholar, PubMed, Scopus, and Web of Science) to assess the role of ion channels in the pathophysiology of obesity. Ion channels present diverse key functions, such as the maintenance of physiological homeostasis and cell proliferation. Cell biology and pharmacological experimental evidences demonstrate that proliferating cells exhibit ion channel expression, conductance, and electrical properties different from the resting cells. Thereby, a large variety of ion channels has been identified in the pathogenesis of obesity such as potassium, sodium, calcium and chloride channels, nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and transient receptor potential channels. The fundamental involvement of these channels on the generation of obesity leads to the progress in the knowledge about the mechanisms responsible for the obesity pathophysiology, consequently emerging as new targets for pharmacological modulation. PMID:27065858

  4. Guiding supersonic projectiles using optically generated air density channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Luke A.; Sprangle, Phillip

    2015-09-01

    We investigate the feasibility of using optically generated channels of reduced air density to provide trajectory correction (guiding) for a supersonic projectile. It is shown that the projectile experiences a force perpendicular to its direction of motion as one side of the projectile passes through a channel of reduced air density. A single channel of reduced air density can be generated by the energy deposited from filamentation of an intense laser pulse. We propose changing the laser pulse energy from shot-to-shot to build longer effective channels. Current femtosecond laser systems with multi-millijoule pulses could provide trajectory correction of several meters on 5 km trajectories for sub-kilogram projectiles traveling at Mach 3.

  5. Novel screening techniques for ion channel targeting drugs

    PubMed Central

    Obergrussberger, Alison; Stölzle-Feix, Sonja; Becker, Nadine; Brüggemann, Andrea; Fertig, Niels; Möller, Clemens

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels are integral membrane proteins that regulate the flux of ions across the cell membrane. They are involved in nearly all physiological processes, and malfunction of ion channels has been linked to many diseases. Until recently, high-throughput screening of ion channels was limited to indirect, e.g. fluorescence-based, readout technologies. In the past years, direct label-free biophysical readout technologies by means of electrophysiology have been developed. Planar patch-clamp electrophysiology provides a direct functional label-free readout of ion channel function in medium to high throughput. Further electrophysiology features, including temperature control and higher-throughput instruments, are continually being developed. Electrophysiological screening in a 384-well format has recently become possible. Advances in chip and microfluidic design, as well as in cell preparation and handling, have allowed challenging cell types to be studied by automated patch clamp. Assays measuring action potentials in stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes, relevant for cardiac safety screening, and neuronal cells, as well as a large number of different ion channels, including fast ligand-gated ion channels, have successfully been established by automated patch clamp. Impedance and multi-electrode array measurements are particularly suitable for studying cardiomyocytes and neuronal cells within their physiological network, and to address more complex physiological questions. This article discusses recent advances in electrophysiological technologies available for screening ion channel function and regulation. PMID:26556400

  6. Novel screening techniques for ion channel targeting drugs.

    PubMed

    Obergrussberger, Alison; Stölzle-Feix, Sonja; Becker, Nadine; Brüggemann, Andrea; Fertig, Niels; Möller, Clemens

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels are integral membrane proteins that regulate the flux of ions across the cell membrane. They are involved in nearly all physiological processes, and malfunction of ion channels has been linked to many diseases. Until recently, high-throughput screening of ion channels was limited to indirect, e.g. fluorescence-based, readout technologies. In the past years, direct label-free biophysical readout technologies by means of electrophysiology have been developed. Planar patch-clamp electrophysiology provides a direct functional label-free readout of ion channel function in medium to high throughput. Further electrophysiology features, including temperature control and higher-throughput instruments, are continually being developed. Electrophysiological screening in a 384-well format has recently become possible. Advances in chip and microfluidic design, as well as in cell preparation and handling, have allowed challenging cell types to be studied by automated patch clamp. Assays measuring action potentials in stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes, relevant for cardiac safety screening, and neuronal cells, as well as a large number of different ion channels, including fast ligand-gated ion channels, have successfully been established by automated patch clamp. Impedance and multi-electrode array measurements are particularly suitable for studying cardiomyocytes and neuronal cells within their physiological network, and to address more complex physiological questions. This article discusses recent advances in electrophysiological technologies available for screening ion channel function and regulation. PMID:26556400

  7. Mechanosensitive ion channels in cultured sensory neurons of neonatal rats.

    PubMed

    Cho, Hawon; Shin, Jieun; Shin, Chan Young; Lee, Soon-Youl; Oh, Uhtaek

    2002-02-15

    Mechanosensitive (MS) ion channels are present in a variety of cells. However, very little is known about the ion channels that account for mechanical sensitivity in sensory neurons. We identified the two most frequently encountered but distinct types of MS channels in 1390 of 2962 membrane patches tested in cultured dorsal root ganglion neurons. The two MS channels exhibited different thresholds, thus named as low-threshold (LT) and high-threshold (HT) MS channels, and sensitivity to pressure. The two channels retained different single-channel conductances and current-voltage relationships: LT and HT channels elicited large- and small-channel conductance with outwardly rectifying and linear I-V relationships, respectively. Both LT and HT MS channels were permeable to monovalent cations and Ca2+ and were blocked by gadolinium, a blocker of MS channels. Colchicine and cytochalasin D markedly reduced the activities of the two MS channels, indicating that cytoskeletal elements support the mechanosensitivity. Both types of MS channels were found primarily in small sensory neurons with diameters of <30 microm. Furthermore, HT MS channels were sensitized by a well known inducer of mechanical hyperalgesia, prostaglandin E2, via the protein kinase A pathway. We identified two distinct types of MS channels in sensory neurons that probably give rise to the observed MS whole-cell currents and transduce mechanical stimuli to neural signals involved in somatosensation, including pain.

  8. Current density compression of intense ion beams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sefkow, Adam Bennett

    Current density compression of intense ion beams in space and time is required for heavy ion fusion, in order to achieve the necessary intensities to implode an inertial confinement fusion target. Longitudinal compression to high current in a short pulse is achieved by imposing a velocity tilt upon the space-charge-dominated charge bunch, and a variety of means exist for simultaneous transverse focusing to a coincident focal plane. Compression to the desired levels requires sufficient neutralization of the beam by a pre-formed plasma during final transport. The physics of current density compression is studied in scaled experiments relevant for the operating regime of a heavy ion driver, and related theory and advanced particle-in-cell simulations provide valuable insight into the physical and technological limitations involved. A fast Faraday cup measures longitudinal compression ratios greater than 50 with pulse durations less than 5 ns, in excellent agreement with reduced models and sophisticated simulations, which account for many experimental parameters and effects. The detailed physics of achieving current density compression in the laboratory is reviewed. Quantitative examples explore the dependency of longitudinal compression on effects such as the finite-size acceleration gap, voltage waveform accuracy, variation in initial beam temperature, pulse length, intended fractional velocity tilt, and energy uncertainty, as well as aberration within focusing elements and plasma neutralization processes. In addition, plasma evolution in experimental sources responsible for the degree of beam neutralization is studied numerically, since compression stagnation occurs under inadequate neutralization conditions, which may excite nonlinear collective excitations due to beam-plasma interactions. The design of simultaneous focusing experiments using both existing and upgraded hardware is provided, and parametric variations important for compression physics are

  9. Electrical Heart Defibrillation with Ion Channel Blockers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feeney, Erin; Clark, Courtney; Puwal, Steffan

    Heart disease is the leading cause of mortality in the United States. Rotary electrical waves within heart muscle underlie electrical disorders of the heart termed fibrillation; their propagation and breakup leads to a complex distribution of electrical activation of the tissue (and of the ensuing mechanical contraction that comes from electrical activation). Successful heart defibrillation has, thus far, been limited to delivering large electrical shocks to activate the entire heart and reset its electrical activity. In theory, defibrillation of a system this nonlinear should be possible with small electrical perturbations (stimulations). A successful algorithm for such a low-energy defibrillator continues to elude researchers. We propose to examine in silica whether low-energy electrical stimulations can be combined with antiarrhythmic, ion channel-blocking drugs to achieve a higher rate of defibrillation and whether the antiarrhythmic drugs should be delivered before or after electrical stimulation has commenced. Progress toward a more successful, low-energy defibrillator will greatly minimize the adverse effects noted in defibrillation and will assist in the development of pediatric defibrillators.

  10. Nerve membrane ion channels as the target site of insecticides.

    PubMed

    Narahashi, Toshio

    2002-08-01

    Most insecticides are potent neurotoxicants that act on various neuroreceptors and ion channels. However, the major target receptors are limited to sodium channels, GABA receptors, and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. DDT and pyrethroids act similarly on sodium channels to keep them open leading to hyperexcitation. Indoxacarb inhibits sodium channels and certain subtypes of nicotinic receptors. Dieldrin, lindane and fipronil block GABA receptors. Imidacloprid modulates nicotinic receptors in a complex manner. Spinosad's major target site appears to be nicotinic receptors.

  11. Ion Permeation and Mechanotransduction Mechanisms of Mechanosensitive Piezo Channels.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Qiancheng; Wu, Kun; Geng, Jie; Chi, Shaopeng; Wang, Yanfeng; Zhi, Peng; Zhang, Mingmin; Xiao, Bailong

    2016-03-16

    Piezo proteins have been proposed as the long-sought-after mechanosensitive cation channels in mammals that play critical roles in various mechanotransduction processes. However, the molecular bases that underlie their ion permeation and mechanotransduction have remained functionally undefined. Here we report our finding of the miniature pore-forming module of Piezo1 that resembles the pore architecture of other trimeric channels and encodes the essential pore properties. We further identified specific residues within the pore module that determine unitary conductance, pore blockage and ion selectivity for divalent and monovalent cations and anions. The non-pore-containing region of Piezo1 confers mechanosensitivity to mechano-insensitive trimeric acid-sensing ion channels, demonstrating that Piezo1 channels possess intrinsic mechanotransduction modules separate from their pore modules. In conclusion, this is the first report on the bona fide pore module and mechanotransduction components of Piezo channels, which define their ion-conducting properties and gating by mechanical stimuli, respectively.

  12. Ion channel gene expression predicts survival in glioma patients.

    PubMed

    Wang, Rong; Gurguis, Christopher I; Gu, Wanjun; Ko, Eun A; Lim, Inja; Bang, Hyoweon; Zhou, Tong; Ko, Jae-Hong

    2015-08-03

    Ion channels are important regulators in cell proliferation, migration, and apoptosis. The malfunction and/or aberrant expression of ion channels may disrupt these important biological processes and influence cancer progression. In this study, we investigate the expression pattern of ion channel genes in glioma. We designate 18 ion channel genes that are differentially expressed in high-grade glioma as a prognostic molecular signature. This ion channel gene expression based signature predicts glioma outcome in three independent validation cohorts. Interestingly, 16 of these 18 genes were down-regulated in high-grade glioma. This signature is independent of traditional clinical, molecular, and histological factors. Resampling tests indicate that the prognostic power of the signature outperforms random gene sets selected from human genome in all the validation cohorts. More importantly, this signature performs better than the random gene signatures selected from glioma-associated genes in two out of three validation datasets. This study implicates ion channels in brain cancer, thus expanding on knowledge of their roles in other cancers. Individualized profiling of ion channel gene expression serves as a superior and independent prognostic tool for glioma patients.

  13. Ion Channels as Drug Targets in Central Nervous System Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Waszkielewicz, A.M; Gunia, A; Szkaradek, N; Słoczyńska, K; Krupińska, S; Marona, H

    2013-01-01

    Ion channel targeted drugs have always been related with either the central nervous system (CNS), the peripheral nervous system, or the cardiovascular system. Within the CNS, basic indications of drugs are: sleep disorders, anxiety, epilepsy, pain, etc. However, traditional channel blockers have multiple adverse events, mainly due to low specificity of mechanism of action. Lately, novel ion channel subtypes have been discovered, which gives premises to drug discovery process led towards specific channel subtypes. An example is Na+ channels, whose subtypes 1.3 and 1.7-1.9 are responsible for pain, and 1.1 and 1.2 – for epilepsy. Moreover, new drug candidates have been recognized. This review is focusing on ion channels subtypes, which play a significant role in current drug discovery and development process. The knowledge on channel subtypes has developed rapidly, giving new nomenclatures of ion channels. For example, Ca2+ channels are not any more divided to T, L, N, P/Q, and R, but they are described as Cav1.1-Cav3.3, with even newer nomenclature α1A-α1I and α1S. Moreover, new channels such as P2X1-P2X7, as well as TRPA1-TRPV1 have been discovered, giving premises for new types of analgesic drugs. PMID:23409712

  14. Markov modeling of ion channels: implications for understanding disease.

    PubMed

    Lampert, Angelika; Korngreen, Alon

    2014-01-01

    Ion channels are the bridge between the biochemical and electrical domains of our life. These membrane crossing proteins use the electric energy stored in transmembrane ion gradients, which are produced by biochemical activity to generate ionic currents. Each ion channel can be imagined as a small power plant similar to a hydroelectric power station, in which potential energy is converted into electric current. This current drives basically all physiological mechanisms of our body. It is clear that a functional blueprint of these amazing cellular power plants is essential for understanding the principle of all aspects of physiology, particularly neurophysiology. The golden path toward this blueprint starts with the biophysical investigation of ion channel activity and continues through detailed numerical modeling of these channels that will eventually lead to a full system-level description of cellular and organ physiology. Here, we discuss the first two stages of this process focusing on voltage-gated channels, particularly the voltage-gated sodium channel which is neurologically and pathologically important. We first detail the correlations between the known structure of the channel and its activity and describe some pathologies. We then provide a hands-on description of Markov modeling for voltage-gated channels. These two sections of the chapter highlight the dichotomy between the vast amounts of electrophysiological data available on voltage-gated channels and the relatively meager number of physiologically relevant models for these channels.

  15. Detection of single ion channel activity with carbon nanotubes

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Weiwei; Wang, Yung Yu; Lim, Tae-Sun; Pham, Ted; Jain, Dheeraj; Burke, Peter J.

    2015-01-01

    Many processes in life are based on ion currents and membrane voltages controlled by a sophisticated and diverse family of membrane proteins (ion channels), which are comparable in size to the most advanced nanoelectronic components currently under development. Here we demonstrate an electrical assay of individual ion channel activity by measuring the dynamic opening and closing of the ion channel nanopores using single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs). Two canonical dynamic ion channels (gramicidin A (gA) and alamethicin) and one static biological nanopore (α-hemolysin (α-HL)) were successfully incorporated into supported lipid bilayers (SLBs, an artificial cell membrane), which in turn were interfaced to the carbon nanotubes through a variety of polymer-cushion surface functionalization schemes. The ion channel current directly charges the quantum capacitance of a single nanotube in a network of purified semiconducting nanotubes. This work forms the foundation for a scalable, massively parallel architecture of 1d nanoelectronic devices interrogating electrophysiology at the single ion channel level. PMID:25778101

  16. Detection of single ion channel activity with carbon nanotubes.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Weiwei; Wang, Yung Yu; Lim, Tae-Sun; Pham, Ted; Jain, Dheeraj; Burke, Peter J

    2015-01-01

    Many processes in life are based on ion currents and membrane voltages controlled by a sophisticated and diverse family of membrane proteins (ion channels), which are comparable in size to the most advanced nanoelectronic components currently under development. Here we demonstrate an electrical assay of individual ion channel activity by measuring the dynamic opening and closing of the ion channel nanopores using single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs). Two canonical dynamic ion channels (gramicidin A (gA) and alamethicin) and one static biological nanopore (α-hemolysin (α-HL)) were successfully incorporated into supported lipid bilayers (SLBs, an artificial cell membrane), which in turn were interfaced to the carbon nanotubes through a variety of polymer-cushion surface functionalization schemes. The ion channel current directly charges the quantum capacitance of a single nanotube in a network of purified semiconducting nanotubes. This work forms the foundation for a scalable, massively parallel architecture of 1d nanoelectronic devices interrogating electrophysiology at the single ion channel level.

  17. Detection of single ion channel activity with carbon nanotubes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Weiwei; Wang, Yung Yu; Lim, Tae-Sun; Pham, Ted; Jain, Dheeraj; Burke, Peter J.

    2015-03-01

    Many processes in life are based on ion currents and membrane voltages controlled by a sophisticated and diverse family of membrane proteins (ion channels), which are comparable in size to the most advanced nanoelectronic components currently under development. Here we demonstrate an electrical assay of individual ion channel activity by measuring the dynamic opening and closing of the ion channel nanopores using single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs). Two canonical dynamic ion channels (gramicidin A (gA) and alamethicin) and one static biological nanopore (α-hemolysin (α-HL)) were successfully incorporated into supported lipid bilayers (SLBs, an artificial cell membrane), which in turn were interfaced to the carbon nanotubes through a variety of polymer-cushion surface functionalization schemes. The ion channel current directly charges the quantum capacitance of a single nanotube in a network of purified semiconducting nanotubes. This work forms the foundation for a scalable, massively parallel architecture of 1d nanoelectronic devices interrogating electrophysiology at the single ion channel level.

  18. Diversity of folds in animal toxins acting on ion channels.

    PubMed Central

    Mouhat, Stéphanie; Jouirou, Besma; Mosbah, Amor; De Waard, Michel; Sabatier, Jean-Marc

    2004-01-01

    Animal toxins acting on ion channels of excitable cells are principally highly potent short peptides that are present in limited amounts in the venoms of various unrelated species, such as scorpions, snakes, sea anemones, spiders, insects, marine cone snails and worms. These toxins have been used extensively as invaluable biochemical and pharmacological tools to characterize and discriminate between the various ion channel types that differ in ionic selectivity, structure and/or cell function. Alongside the huge molecular and functional diversity of ion channels, a no less impressive structural diversity of animal toxins has been indicated by the discovery of an increasing number of polypeptide folds that are able to target these ion channels. Indeed, it appears that these peptide toxins have evolved over time on the basis of clearly distinct architectural motifs, in order to adapt to different ion channel modulating strategies (pore blockers compared with gating modifiers). Herein, we provide an up-to-date overview of the various types of fold from animal toxins that act on ion channels selective for K+, Na+, Ca2+ or Cl- ions, with special emphasis on disulphide bridge frameworks and structural motifs associated with these peptide folds. PMID:14674883

  19. Ion channel profiling to advance drug discovery and development.

    PubMed

    Zou, Beiyan

    2015-11-01

    In vitro pharmacological profiling provides crucial information to eliminate drug candidates with potential toxicity early in drug discovery and reduce failure in later stages. It has become a common practice in industry to test lead compounds against a panel of ion channel targets for selectivity and safety liability at early drug discovery stages. Ion channel profiling technologies include binding assays, flux assays, fluorescent membrane potential assays, automated and conventional electrophysiology. Instead of examining compound effects on individual ion channel targets, automated current clamp, optical electrophysiology, and multi-electrode assays have evolved to investigate the integrated compound effects on cardiac myocytes. This review aims to provide an overview of ion channel profiling for cardiac safety and comparisons of various technologies.

  20. Modulation of TRP ion channels by venomous toxins.

    PubMed

    Siemens, Jan; Hanack, Christina

    2014-01-01

    Venoms are evolutionarily fine-tuned mixtures of small molecules, peptides, and proteins-referred to as toxins-that have evolved to specifically modulate and interfere with the function of diverse molecular targets within the envenomated animal. Many of the identified toxin targets are membrane receptors and ion channels. Due to their high specificity, toxins have emerged as an invaluable tool set for the molecular characterization of ion channels, and a selected group of toxins even have been developed into therapeutics. More recently, TRP ion channels have been included as targets for venomous toxins. In particular, a number of apparently unrelated peptide toxins target the capsaicin receptor TRPV1 to produce inflammatory pain. These toxins have turned out to be invaluable for structural and functional characterizations of the capsaicin receptor. If toxins will serve similar roles for other TRP ion channels, only future will tell.

  1. HIGH ENERGY DENSITY PHYSICS EXPERIMENTS WITH INTENSE HEAVY ION BEAMS

    SciTech Connect

    Bieniosek, F.M.; Henestroza, E.; Leitner, M.; Logan, B.G.; More, R.M.; Roy, P.K.; Ni, P.; Seidl, P.A.; Waldron, W.L.; Barnard, J.J.

    2008-08-01

    The US heavy ion fusion science program has developed techniques for heating ion-beam-driven warm dense matter (WDM) targets. The WDM conditions are to be achieved by combined longitudinal and transverse space-charge neutralized drift compression of the ion beam to provide a hot spot on the target with a beam spot size of about 1 mm, and pulse length about 1-2 ns. As a technique for heating volumetric samples of matter to high energy density, intense beams of heavy ions are capable of delivering precise and uniform beam energy deposition dE/dx, in a relatively large sample size, and the ability to heat any solid-phase target material. Initial experiments use a 0.3 MeV K+ beam (below the Bragg peak) from the NDCX-I accelerator. Future plans include target experiments using the NDCX-II accelerator, which is designed to heat targets at the Bragg peak using a 3-6 MeV lithium ion beam. The range of the beams in solid matter targets is about 1 micron, which can be lengthened by using porous targets at reduced density. We have completed the fabrication of a new experimental target chamber facility for WDM experiments, and implemented initial target diagnostics to be used for the first target experiments in NDCX-1. The target chamber has been installed on the NDCX-I beamline. The target diagnostics include a fast multi-channel optical pyrometer, optical streak camera, VISAR, and high-speed gated cameras. Initial WDM experiments will heat targets by compressed NDCX-I beams and will explore measurement of temperature and other target parameters. Experiments are planned in areas such as dense electronegative targets, porous target homogenization and two-phase equation of state.

  2. HIGH ENERGY DENSITY PHYSICS EXPERIMENTS WITH INTENSE HEAVY ION BEAMS

    SciTech Connect

    Henestroza, E.; Leitner, M.; Logan, B.G.; More, R.M.; Roy, P.K.; Ni, P.; Seidl, P.A.; Waldron, W.L.; Barnard, J.J.

    2010-03-16

    The US heavy ion fusion science program has developed techniques for heating ion-beam-driven warm dense matter (WDM) targets. The WDM conditions are to be achieved by combined longitudinal and transverse space-charge neutralized drift compression of the ion beam to provide a hot spot on the target with a beam spot size of about 1 mm, and pulse length about 1-2 ns. As a technique for heating volumetric samples of matter to high energy density, intense beams of heavy ions are capable of delivering precise and uniform beam energy deposition dE/dx, in a relatively large sample size, and the ability to heat any solid-phase target material. Initial experiments use a 0.3 MeV K+ beam (below the Bragg peak) from the NDCX-I accelerator. Future plans include target experiments using the NDCX-II accelerator, which is designed to heat targets at the Bragg peak using a 3-6 MeV lithium ion beam. The range of the beams in solid matter targets is about 1 micron, which can be lengthened by using porous targets at reduced density. We have completed the fabrication of a new experimental target chamber facility for WDM experiments, and implemented initial target diagnostics to be used for the first target experiments in NDCX-1. The target chamber has been installed on the NDCX-I beamline. The target diagnostics include a fast multi-channel optical pyrometer, optical streak camera, VISAR, and high-speed gated cameras. Initial WDM experiments will heat targets by compressed NDCX-I beams and will explore measurement of temperature and other target parameters. Experiments are planned in areas such as dense electronegative targets, porous target homogenization and two-phase equation of state.

  3. Mechanosensitivity of ion channels based on protein–lipid interactions

    PubMed Central

    Yoshimura, Kenjiro; Sokabe, Masahiro

    2010-01-01

    Ion channels form a group of membrane proteins that pass ions through a pore beyond the energy barrier of the lipid bilayer. The structure of the transmembrane segment of membrane proteins is influenced by the charges and the hydrophobicity of the surrounding lipids and the pressure on its surface. A mechanosensitive channel is specifically designed to change its conformation in response to changes in the membrane pressure (tension). However, mechanosensitive channels are not the only group that is sensitive to the physical environment of the membrane: voltage-gated channels are also amenable to the lipid environment. In this article, we review the structure and gating mechanisms of the mechanosensitive channels and voltage-gated channels and discuss how their functions are affected by the physical properties of the lipid bilayer. PMID:20356872

  4. Inositol trisphosphate receptor and ion channel models based on single-channel data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gin, Elan; Wagner, Larry E.; Yule, David I.; Sneyd, James

    2009-09-01

    The inositol trisphosphate receptor (IPR) plays an important role in controlling the dynamics of intracellular Ca2+. Single-channel patch-clamp recordings are a typical way to study these receptors as well as other ion channels. Methods for analyzing and using this type of data have been developed to fit Markov models of the receptor. The usual method of parameter fitting is based on maximum-likelihood techniques. However, Bayesian inference and Markov chain Monte Carlo techniques are becoming more popular. We describe the application of the Bayesian methods to real experimental single-channel data in three ion channels: the ryanodine receptor, the K+ channel, and the IPR. One of the main aims of all three studies was that of model selection with different approaches taken. We also discuss the modeling implications for single-channel data that display different levels of channel activity within one recording.

  5. Molecular Modeling of Mechanosensory Ion Channel Structural and Functional Features

    PubMed Central

    Gessmann, Renate; Kourtis, Nikos; Petratos, Kyriacos; Tavernarakis, Nektarios

    2010-01-01

    The DEG/ENaC (Degenerin/Epithelial Sodium Channel) protein family comprises related ion channel subunits from all metazoans, including humans. Members of this protein family play roles in several important biological processes such as transduction of mechanical stimuli, sodium re-absorption and blood pressure regulation. Several blocks of amino acid sequence are conserved in DEG/ENaC proteins, but structure/function relations in this channel class are poorly understood. Given the considerable experimental limitations associated with the crystallization of integral membrane proteins, knowledge-based modeling is often the only route towards obtaining reliable structural information. To gain insight into the structural characteristics of DEG/ENaC ion channels, we derived three-dimensional models of MEC-4 and UNC-8, based on the available crystal structures of ASIC1 (Acid Sensing Ion Channel 1). MEC-4 and UNC-8 are two DEG/ENaC family members involved in mechanosensation and proprioception respectively, in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We used these models to examine the structural effects of specific mutations that alter channel function in vivo. The trimeric MEC-4 model provides insight into the mechanism by which gain-of-function mutations cause structural alterations that result in increased channel permeability, which trigger cell degeneration. Our analysis provides an introductory framework to further investigate the multimeric organization of the DEG/ENaC ion channel complex. PMID:20877470

  6. Molecular modeling of mechanosensory ion channel structural and functional features.

    PubMed

    Gessmann, Renate; Kourtis, Nikos; Petratos, Kyriacos; Tavernarakis, Nektarios

    2010-09-16

    The DEG/ENaC (Degenerin/Epithelial Sodium Channel) protein family comprises related ion channel subunits from all metazoans, including humans. Members of this protein family play roles in several important biological processes such as transduction of mechanical stimuli, sodium re-absorption and blood pressure regulation. Several blocks of amino acid sequence are conserved in DEG/ENaC proteins, but structure/function relations in this channel class are poorly understood. Given the considerable experimental limitations associated with the crystallization of integral membrane proteins, knowledge-based modeling is often the only route towards obtaining reliable structural information. To gain insight into the structural characteristics of DEG/ENaC ion channels, we derived three-dimensional models of MEC-4 and UNC-8, based on the available crystal structures of ASIC1 (Acid Sensing Ion Channel 1). MEC-4 and UNC-8 are two DEG/ENaC family members involved in mechanosensation and proprioception respectively, in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. We used these models to examine the structural effects of specific mutations that alter channel function in vivo. The trimeric MEC-4 model provides insight into the mechanism by which gain-of-function mutations cause structural alterations that result in increased channel permeability, which trigger cell degeneration. Our analysis provides an introductory framework to further investigate the multimeric organization of the DEG/ENaC ion channel complex.

  7. Dysfunctional HCN ion channels in neurological diseases

    PubMed Central

    DiFrancesco, Jacopo C.; DiFrancesco, Dario

    2015-01-01

    Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels are expressed as four different isoforms (HCN1-4) in the heart and in the central and peripheral nervous systems. HCN channels are activated by membrane hyperpolarization at voltages close to resting membrane potentials and carry the hyperpolarization-activated current, dubbed If (funny current) in heart and Ih in neurons. HCN channels contribute in several ways to neuronal activity and are responsible for many important cellular functions, including cellular excitability, generation, and modulation of rhythmic activity, dendritic integration, transmission of synaptic potentials, and plasticity phenomena. Because of their role, defective HCN channels are natural candidates in the search for potential causes of neurological disorders in humans. Several data, including growing evidence that some forms of epilepsy are associated with HCN mutations, support the notion of an involvement of dysfunctional HCN channels in different experimental models of the disease. Additionally, some anti-epileptic drugs are known to modify the activity of the Ih current. HCN channels are widely expressed in the peripheral nervous system and recent evidence has highlighted the importance of the HCN2 isoform in the transmission of pain. HCN channels are also present in the midbrain system, where they finely regulate the activity of dopaminergic neurons, and a potential role of these channels in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease has recently emerged. The function of HCN channels is regulated by specific accessory proteins, which control the correct expression and modulation of the neuronal Ih current. Alteration of these proteins can severely interfere with the physiological channel function, potentially predisposing to pathological conditions. In this review we address the present knowledge of the association between HCN dysfunctions and neurological diseases, including clinical, genetic, and physiopathological

  8. Tuning the ion selectivity of tetrameric cation channels by changing the number of ion binding sites

    SciTech Connect

    Derebe, Mehabaw G.; Sauer, David B.; Zeng, Weizhong; Alam, Amer; Shi, Ning; Jiang, Youxing

    2015-11-30

    Selective ion conduction across ion channel pores is central to cellular physiology. To understand the underlying principles of ion selectivity in tetrameric cation channels, we engineered a set of cation channel pores based on the nonselective NaK channel and determined their structures to high resolution. These structures showcase an ensemble of selectivity filters with a various number of contiguous ion binding sites ranging from 2 to 4, with each individual site maintaining a geometry and ligand environment virtually identical to that of equivalent sites in K{sup +} channel selectivity filters. Combined with single channel electrophysiology, we show that only the channel with four ion binding sites is K{sup +} selective, whereas those with two or three are nonselective and permeate Na{sup +} and K{sup +} equally well. These observations strongly suggest that the number of contiguous ion binding sites in a single file is the key determinant of the channel's selectivity properties and the presence of four sites in K{sup +} channels is essential for highly selective and efficient permeation of K{sup +} ions.

  9. Ion channels that control fertility in mammalian spermatozoa.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Betsy; Kirichok, Yuriy; Chung, Jean-Ju; Clapham, David E

    2008-01-01

    Whole-cell voltage clamp of mammalian spermatozoa was first achieved in 2006. This technical advance, combined with genetic deletion strategies, makes unambiguous identification of sperm ion channel currents possible. This review summarizes the ion channel currents that have been directly measured in mammalian sperm, and their physiological roles in fertilization. The predominant currents are a Ca2+-selective current requiring expression of the 4 mCatSper genes, and a rectifying K+ current with properties most similar to mSlo3. Intracellular alkalinization activates both channels and induces hyperactivated motility.

  10. Mass-dependent channel electron multiplier operation. [for ion detection

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fields, S. A.; Burch, J. L.; Oran, W. A.

    1977-01-01

    The absolute counting efficiency and pulse height distributions of a continuous-channel electron multiplier used in the detection of hydrogen, argon and xenon ions are assessed. The assessment technique, which involves the post-acceleration of 8-eV ion beams to energies from 100 to 4000 eV, provides information on counting efficiency versus post-acceleration voltage characteristics over a wide range of ion mass. The charge pulse height distributions for H2 (+), A (+) and Xe (+) were measured by operating the experimental apparatus in a marginally gain-saturated mode. It was found that gain saturation occurs at lower channel multiplier operating voltages for light ions such as H2 (+) than for the heavier ions A (+) and Xe (+), suggesting that the technique may be used to discriminate between these two classes of ions in electrostatic analyzers.

  11. Selective activation of mechanosensitive ion channels using magnetic particles.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Steven; McBain, Stuart; Dobson, Jon; El Haj, Alicia J

    2008-08-01

    This study reports the preliminary development of a novel magnetic particle-based technique that permits the application of highly localized mechanical forces directly to specific regions of an ion-channel structure. We demonstrate that this approach can be used to directly and selectively activate a mechanosensitive ion channel of interest, namely TREK-1. It is shown that manipulation of particles targeted against the extended extracellular loop region of TREK-1 leads to changes in whole-cell currents consistent with changes in TREK-1 activity. Responses were absent when particles were coated with RGD (Arg-Gly-Asp) peptide or when magnetic fields were applied in the absence of magnetic particles. It is concluded that changes in whole-cell current are the result of direct force application to the extracellular loop region of TREK-1 and thus these results implicate this region of the channel structure in mechano-gating. It is hypothesized that the extended loop region of TREK-1 may act as a tension spring that acts to regulate sensitivity to mechanical forces, in a nature similar to that described for MscL. The development of a technique that permits the direct manipulation of mechanosensitive ion channels in real time without the need for pharmacological drugs has huge potential benefits not only for basic biological research of ion-channel gating mechanisms, but also potentially as a tool for the treatment of human diseases caused by ion-channel dysfunction.

  12. Combining molecular dynamics and an electrodiffusion model to calculate ion channel conductance.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Michael A; Nguyen, Thuy Hien; Pohorille, Andrew

    2014-12-14

    Establishing the relation between the structures and functions of protein ion channels, which are protein assemblies that facilitate transmembrane ion transport through water-filled pores, is at the forefront of biological and medical sciences. A reliable way to determine whether our understanding of this relation is satisfactory is to reproduce the measured ionic conductance over a broad range of applied voltages. This can be done in molecular dynamics simulations by way of applying an external electric field to the system and counting the number of ions that traverse the channel per unit time. Since this approach is computationally very expensive we develop a markedly more efficient alternative in which molecular dynamics is combined with an electrodiffusion equation. This alternative approach applies if steady-state ion transport through channels can be described with sufficient accuracy by the one-dimensional diffusion equation in the potential given by the free energy profile and applied voltage. The theory refers only to line densities of ions in the channel and, therefore, avoids ambiguities related to determining the surface area of the channel near its endpoints or other procedures connecting the line and bulk ion densities. We apply the theory to a simple, model system based on the trichotoxin channel. We test the assumptions of the electrodiffusion equation, and determine the precision and consistency of the calculated conductance. We demonstrate that it is possible to calculate current/voltage dependence and accurately reconstruct the underlying (equilibrium) free energy profile, all from molecular dynamics simulations at a single voltage. The approach developed here applies to other channels that satisfy the conditions of the electrodiffusion equation. PMID:25494790

  13. TRPC Family of Ion Channels and Mechanotransduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamill, Owen P.; Maroto, Rosario

    Here we review recent evidence that indicates members of the canonical transient receptor potential (TRPC) channel family form mechanosensitive (MS) channels. The MS functions of TRPCs may be mechanistically related to their better known functions as store-operated (SOCs) and receptor-operated channels (ROCs). In particular, mechanical forces may be conveyed to TRPC channels through "conformational coupling" and/or "Ca2+ influx factor" mechanisms that are proposed to transmit information regarding the status of internal Ca2+ stores to SOCs located in the plasma membrane. Furthermore, all TRPCs are regulated by receptors coupled to phospholipases (e.g., PLC and PLA2) that may themselves display mechanosensitivity and modulate channel activity via their generation of lipidic second messengers (e.g., diacylglycerol, lysophospholipids and arachidonic acid). Accordingly, there may be several nonexclusive mechanisms by which mechanical forces may regulate TRPC channels, including direct sensitivity to bilayer deformations (e.g., involving changes in lipid packing, bilayer thickness and/or lateral pressure profile), physical coupling to internal membranes and/or cytoskeletal proteins, and sensitivity to lipidic second messengers generated by MS enzymes. Various strategies that can be used to separate out different MS gating mechanisms and their possible role in each of the TRPCs are discussed.

  14. Critical issues in multiscale simulation of ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jakobsson, Eric

    2004-03-01

    The ion permeation process in individual protein channels involves phenomena over a wide range of time scales, ranging from the sub-femtosecond time scale for electronic polarization and to hundreds of milliseconds for the slowest gating motions---a range of about 15 powers of ten. Even with Moore's Law increasing computer power by a factor of two every 18 months, brute force computing will not suffice; we must develop integrated multiscale methods. This paper reports on our recent work in several aspects of multiscale simulation of ion permeation: 1) Accurate calculation of protonation states for titratable residues, as exemplified by calculation of ionization states of residues in the permeation pathway of bacterial porin. In this channel with multiple titratable residues we find that comprehensive accounting for all combinations of electrostatic interactions is necessary to compute correct protonation states, and show also that the correct protonation assignment is necessary for the crystal structure to be stable in molecular dynamics simulations, 2) Reduced dimension Brownian dynamics simulations of ion random walk in ion channels, as exemplified by simulations of potassium channels, 3) software engineering for integrated automated multiscale calculations of ion flux, and 4) extension of simulation methodology to the simulation of synthetic channels, as exemplified by simulations of water and ion permeation and structures in simulated nanotubes. In the nanotube simulations we find that confinement in a nanotube of a critical diameter induces high-temperature freezing of water, suggesting a possible method for gating nanoscale proton-conducting nanoscale semiconductors.

  15. The Ion Channel Inverse Problem: Neuroinformatics Meets Biophysics

    PubMed Central

    Cannon, Robert C; D'Alessandro, Giampaolo

    2006-01-01

    Ion channels are the building blocks of the information processing capability of neurons: any realistic computational model of a neuron must include reliable and effective ion channel components. Sophisticated statistical and computational tools have been developed to study the ion channel structure–function relationship, but this work is rarely incorporated into the models used for single neurons or small networks. The disjunction is partly a matter of convention. Structure–function studies typically use a single Markov model for the whole channel whereas until recently whole-cell modeling software has focused on serial, independent, two-state subunits that can be represented by the Hodgkin–Huxley equations. More fundamentally, there is a difference in purpose that prevents models being easily reused. Biophysical models are typically developed to study one particular aspect of channel gating in detail, whereas neural modelers require broad coverage of the entire range of channel behavior that is often best achieved with approximate representations that omit structural features that cannot be adequately constrained. To bridge the gap so that more recent channel data can be used in neural models requires new computational infrastructure for bringing together diverse sources of data to arrive at best-fit models for whole-cell modeling. We review the current state of channel modeling and explore the developments needed for its conclusions to be integrated into whole-cell modeling. PMID:16933979

  16. The ion channel inverse problem: neuroinformatics meets biophysics.

    PubMed

    Cannon, Robert C; D'Alessandro, Giampaolo

    2006-08-25

    Ion channels are the building blocks of the information processing capability of neurons: any realistic computational model of a neuron must include reliable and effective ion channel components. Sophisticated statistical and computational tools have been developed to study the ion channel structure-function relationship, but this work is rarely incorporated into the models used for single neurons or small networks. The disjunction is partly a matter of convention. Structure-function studies typically use a single Markov model for the whole channel whereas until recently whole-cell modeling software has focused on serial, independent, two-state subunits that can be represented by the Hodgkin-Huxley equations. More fundamentally, there is a difference in purpose that prevents models being easily reused. Biophysical models are typically developed to study one particular aspect of channel gating in detail, whereas neural modelers require broad coverage of the entire range of channel behavior that is often best achieved with approximate representations that omit structural features that cannot be adequately constrained. To bridge the gap so that more recent channel data can be used in neural models requires new computational infrastructure for bringing together diverse sources of data to arrive at best-fit models for whole-cell modeling. We review the current state of channel modeling and explore the developments needed for its conclusions to be integrated into whole-cell modeling. PMID:16933979

  17. [Interaction of melittin with ion channels of excitable membranes].

    PubMed

    Zherelova, O M; Kabanova, N V; Kazachenko, V N; Chaĭlakhian, L M

    2007-01-01

    The effect of the neurotoxin melittin on the activation of ion channels of excitable membrane, the plasmalemma of Characeae algae cells, isolated membrane patches of neurons of mollusc L. stagnalis and Vero cells was studied by the method of intracellular perfusion and the patch-clamp technique in inside-out configuration. It was shown that melittin disturbs the conductivity of plasmalemma and modifieds Ca(2+)-channels of plant membrane. The leakage current that appears by the action of melittin can be restored by substituting calmodulin for melittin. Melittin modifies K(+)-channels of animal cell membrane by disrupting the phospholipid matrix and forms conductive structures in the membrane by interacting with channel proteins, which is evidenced by the appearance of additional ion channels.

  18. [Interaction of melittin with ion channels of excitable membranes].

    PubMed

    Zherelova, O M; Kabanova, N V; Kazachenko, V N; Chaĭlakhian, L M

    2007-01-01

    The effect of the neurotoxin melittin on the activation of ion channels of excitable membrane, the plasmalemma of Characeae algae cells, isolated membrane patches of neurons of mollusc L. stagnalis and Vero cells was studied by the method of intracellular perfusion and the patch-clamp technique in inside-out configuration. It was shown that melittin disturbs the conductivity of plasmalemma and modifieds Ca(2+)-channels of plant membrane. The leakage current that appears by the action of melittin can be restored by substituting calmodulin for melittin. Melittin modifies K(+)-channels of animal cell membrane by disrupting the phospholipid matrix and forms conductive structures in the membrane by interacting with channel proteins, which is evidenced by the appearance of additional ion channels. PMID:17477057

  19. Noise analysis of ionization kinetics in a protein ion channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bezrukov, Sergey M.; Kasianowicz, John J.

    1993-08-01

    We observed excess current noise generated by the reversible ionization of sites in a transmembrane protein ion channel, which is analogous to current fluctuations found recently in solid state microstructure electronic devices. Specifically the current through fully open single channels formed by Staphylococcus aureus α-toxin shows pH dependent fluctuations. We show that noise analysis of the open channel current can be used to evaluate the ionization rate constants, the number of sites participating in the ionization process, and the effect of recharging a single site on the channel conductance.

  20. Ion Channel Gene Expression in the Inner Ear

    PubMed Central

    Sokolowski, Bernd H.A.; Morton, Cynthia C.; Giersch, Anne B.S.

    2007-01-01

    The ion channel genome is still being defined despite numerous publications on the subject. The ion channel transcriptome is even more difficult to assess. Using high-throughput computational tools, we surveyed all available inner ear cDNA libraries to identify genes coding for ion channels. We mapped over 100,000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) derived from human cochlea, mouse organ of Corti, mouse and zebrafish inner ear, and rat vestibular end organs to Homo sapiens, Mus musculus, Danio rerio, and Rattus norvegicus genomes. A survey of EST data alone reveals that at least a third of the ion channel genome is expressed in the inner ear, with highest expression occurring in hair cell-enriched mouse organ of Corti and rat vestibule. Our data and comparisons with other experimental techniques that measure gene expression show that every method has its limitations and does not per se provide a complete coverage of the inner ear ion channelome. In addition, the data show that most genes produce alternative transcripts with the same spectrum across multiple organisms, no ion channel gene variants are unique to the inner ear, and many splice variants have yet to be annotated. Our high-throughput approach offers a qualitative computational and experimental analysis of ion channel genes in inner ear cDNA collections. A lack of data and incomplete gene annotations prevent both rigorous statistical analyses and comparisons of entire ion channelomes derived from different tissues and organisms. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s10162-007-0082-y) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users. PMID:17541769

  1. Ion fluxes through nanopores and transmembrane channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bordin, J. R.; Diehl, A.; Barbosa, M. C.; Levin, Y.

    2012-03-01

    We introduce an implicit solvent Molecular Dynamics approach for calculating ionic fluxes through narrow nanopores and transmembrane channels. The method relies on a dual-control-volume grand-canonical molecular dynamics (DCV-GCMD) simulation and the analytical solution for the electrostatic potential inside a cylindrical nanopore recently obtained by Levin [Europhys. Lett.EULEEJ0295-507510.1209/epl/i2006-10240-4 76, 163 (2006)]. The theory is used to calculate the ionic fluxes through an artificial transmembrane channel which mimics the antibacterial gramicidin A channel. Both current-voltage and current-concentration relations are calculated under various experimental conditions. We show that our results are comparable to the characteristics associated to the gramicidin A pore, especially the existence of two binding sites inside the pore and the observed saturation in the current-concentration profiles.

  2. Molecular dynamics of ion transport through the open conformation of a bacterial voltage-gated sodium channel.

    PubMed

    Ulmschneider, Martin B; Bagnéris, Claire; McCusker, Emily C; Decaen, Paul G; Delling, Markus; Clapham, David E; Ulmschneider, Jakob P; Wallace, B A

    2013-04-16

    The crystal structure of the open conformation of a bacterial voltage-gated sodium channel pore from Magnetococcus sp. (NaVMs) has provided the basis for a molecular dynamics study defining the channel's full ion translocation pathway and conductance process, selectivity, electrophysiological characteristics, and ion-binding sites. Microsecond molecular dynamics simulations permitted a complete time-course characterization of the protein in a membrane system, capturing the plethora of conductance events and revealing a complex mixture of single and multi-ion phenomena with decoupled rapid bidirectional water transport. The simulations suggest specific localization sites for the sodium ions, which correspond with experimentally determined electron density found in the selectivity filter of the crystal structure. These studies have also allowed us to identify the ion conductance mechanism and its relation to water movement for the NavMs channel pore and to make realistic predictions of its conductance properties. The calculated single-channel conductance and selectivity ratio correspond closely with the electrophysiology measurements of the NavMs channel expressed in HEK 293 cells. The ion translocation process seen in this voltage-gated sodium channel is clearly different from that exhibited by members of the closely related family of voltage-gated potassium channels and also differs considerably from existing proposals for the conductance process in sodium channels. These studies simulate sodium channel conductance based on an experimentally determined structure of a sodium channel pore that has a completely open transmembrane pathway and activation gate.

  3. Emergence of ion channel modal gating from independent subunit kinetics.

    PubMed

    Bicknell, Brendan A; Goodhill, Geoffrey J

    2016-09-01

    Many ion channels exhibit a slow stochastic switching between distinct modes of gating activity. This feature of channel behavior has pronounced implications for the dynamics of ionic currents and the signaling pathways that they regulate. A canonical example is the inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor (IP3R) channel, whose regulation of intracellular Ca(2+) concentration is essential for numerous cellular processes. However, the underlying biophysical mechanisms that give rise to modal gating in this and most other channels remain unknown. Although ion channels are composed of protein subunits, previous mathematical models of modal gating are coarse grained at the level of whole-channel states, limiting further dialogue between theory and experiment. Here we propose an origin for modal gating, by modeling the kinetics of ligand binding and conformational change in the IP3R at the subunit level. We find good agreement with experimental data over a wide range of ligand concentrations, accounting for equilibrium channel properties, transient responses to changing ligand conditions, and modal gating statistics. We show how this can be understood within a simple analytical framework and confirm our results with stochastic simulations. The model assumes that channel subunits are independent, demonstrating that cooperative binding or concerted conformational changes are not required for modal gating. Moreover, the model embodies a generally applicable principle: If a timescale separation exists in the kinetics of individual subunits, then modal gating can arise as an emergent property of channel behavior. PMID:27551100

  4. Emerging concepts in the pharmacogenomics of arrhythmias: ion channel trafficking

    PubMed Central

    Harkcom, William T; Abbott, Geoffrey W

    2010-01-01

    Continuous, rhythmic beating of the heart requires exquisite control of expression, localization and function of cardiac ion channels – the foundations of the cardiac myocyte action potential. Disruption of any of these processes can alter the shape of the action potential, predisposing to cardiac arrhythmias. These arrhythmias can manifest in a variety of ways depending on both the channels involved and the type of disruption (i.e., gain or loss of function). As much as 1% of the population of developed countries is affected by cardiac arrhythmia each year, and a detailed understanding of the mechanism of each arrhythmia is crucial to developing and prescribing the proper therapies. Many of the antiarrhythmic drugs currently on the market were developed before the underlying cause of the arrhythmia was known, and as a result lack specificity, causing side effects. The majority of the available drugs target the conductance of cardiac ion channels, either by blocking or enhancing current through the channel. In recent years, however, it has become apparent that specific targeting of ion channel conductance may not be the most effective means for treatment. Here we review increasing evidence that suggests defects in ion channel trafficking play an important role in the etiology of arrhythmias, and small molecule approaches to correct trafficking defects will likely play an important role in the future of arrhythmia treatment. PMID:20670193

  5. EPR Studies of Gating Mechanisms in Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Chakrapani, Sudha

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels open and close in response to diverse stimuli, and the molecular events underlying these processes are extensively modulated by ligands of both endogenous and exogenous origin. In the past decade, high-resolution structures of several channel types have been solved, providing unprecedented details of the molecular architecture of these membrane proteins. Intrinsic conformational flexibility of ion channels critically governs their functions. However, the dynamics underlying gating mechanisms and modulations are obscured in the information from crystal structures. While nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopic methods allow direct measurements of protein dynamics, they are limited by the large size of these membrane protein assemblies in detergent micelles or lipid membranes. Electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy has emerged as a key biophysical tool to characterize structural dynamics of ion channels and to determine stimulus-driven conformational transition between functional states in a physiological environment. This review will provide an overview of the recent advances in the field of voltage- and ligand-gated channels and highlight some of the challenges and controversies surrounding the structural information available. It will discuss general methods used in site-directed spin labeling and EPR spectroscopy and illustrate how findings from these studies have narrowed the gap between high-resolution structures and gating mechanisms in membranes, and have thereby helped reconcile seemingly disparate models of ion channel function. PMID:25950970

  6. The 22nd Ion Channel Meeting, September 2011, France

    PubMed Central

    Goaillard, Jean-Marc; Groc, Laurent; Lévi, Sabine; Mantegazza, Massimo; Matifat, Fabrice; Morel, Jean-Luc; Baron-Forster, Anne

    2012-01-01

    The 22nd Ion Channel Meeting was organized by the French Ion Channel Society (Association Canaux Ioniques) from the 25th to the 28th of September 2011 on the French Riviera (Giens). This year again, more than one hundred researchers from France, Europe and extra-European countries gathered to present and discuss their recent advances and future challenges in the ion channels and transporters field. The scientific committee organized a plenary lecture and five thematic symposia by inviting international researchers to present their recent outstanding work on themes as diverse as muscular channelopathies, regulation of channels by extracellular matrix, receptor-channels interactions, localization and distribution of ion channels, their involvement in the cell life and death, and finally how they participate in the evolution and adaptability of cellular excitability. These presentations are summarized in this meeting report. Two sessions of oral communications selected from submitted abstracts and two poster sessions were also organized to present the ongoing work of young researchers worldwide. PMID:22647366

  7. Ion/water channels for embryo implantation barrier.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xin-Mei; Zhang, Dan; Wang, Ting-Ting; Sheng, Jian-Zhong; Huang, He-Feng

    2014-05-01

    Successful implantation involves three distinct processes, namely the embryo apposition, attachment, and penetration through the luminal epithelium of the endometrium to establish a vascular link to the mother. After penetration, stromal cells underlying the epithelium differentiate and surround the embryo to form the embryo implantation barrier, which blocks the passage of harmful substances to the embryo. Many ion/water channel proteins were found to be involved in the process of embryo implantation. First, ion/water channel proteins play their classical role in establishing a resting membrane potential, shaping action potentials and other electrical signals by gating the flow of ions across the cell membrane. Second, most of ion/water channel proteins are regulated by steroid hormone (estrogen or progesterone), which may have important implications to the embryo implantation. Last but not least, these proteins do not limit themselves as pure channels but also function as an initiator of a series of consequences once activated by their ligand/stimulator. Herein, we discuss these new insights in recent years about the contribution of ion/water channels to the embryo implantation barrier construction during early pregnancy. PMID:24789983

  8. Metal bridges to probe membrane ion channel structure and function.

    PubMed

    Linsdell, Paul

    2015-06-01

    Ion channels are integral membrane proteins that undergo important conformational changes as they open and close to control transmembrane flux of different ions. The molecular underpinnings of these dynamic conformational rearrangements are difficult to ascertain using current structural methods. Several functional approaches have been used to understand two- and three-dimensional dynamic structures of ion channels, based on the reactivity of the cysteine side-chain. Two-dimensional structural rearrangements, such as changes in the accessibility of different parts of the channel protein to the bulk solution on either side of the membrane, are used to define movements within the permeation pathway, such as those that open and close ion channel gates. Three-dimensional rearrangements – in which two different parts of the channel protein change their proximity during conformational changes – are probed by cross-linking or bridging together two cysteine side-chains. Particularly useful in this regard are so-called metal bridges formed when two or more cysteine side-chains form a high-affinity binding site for metal ions such as Cd2+ or Zn2+. This review describes the use of these different techniques for the study of ion channel dynamic structure and function, including a comprehensive review of the different kinds of conformational rearrangements that have been studied in different channel types via the identification of intra-molecular metal bridges. Factors that influence the affinities and conformational sensitivities of these metal bridges, as well as the kinds of structural inferences that can be drawn from these studies, are also discussed. PMID:26103632

  9. Metal bridges to probe membrane ion channel structure and function.

    PubMed

    Linsdell, Paul

    2015-06-01

    Ion channels are integral membrane proteins that undergo important conformational changes as they open and close to control transmembrane flux of different ions. The molecular underpinnings of these dynamic conformational rearrangements are difficult to ascertain using current structural methods. Several functional approaches have been used to understand two- and three-dimensional dynamic structures of ion channels, based on the reactivity of the cysteine side-chain. Two-dimensional structural rearrangements, such as changes in the accessibility of different parts of the channel protein to the bulk solution on either side of the membrane, are used to define movements within the permeation pathway, such as those that open and close ion channel gates. Three-dimensional rearrangements – in which two different parts of the channel protein change their proximity during conformational changes – are probed by cross-linking or bridging together two cysteine side-chains. Particularly useful in this regard are so-called metal bridges formed when two or more cysteine side-chains form a high-affinity binding site for metal ions such as Cd2+ or Zn2+. This review describes the use of these different techniques for the study of ion channel dynamic structure and function, including a comprehensive review of the different kinds of conformational rearrangements that have been studied in different channel types via the identification of intra-molecular metal bridges. Factors that influence the affinities and conformational sensitivities of these metal bridges, as well as the kinds of structural inferences that can be drawn from these studies, are also discussed.

  10. Distribution of ion current density on a rotating spherical cap substrate during ion-assisted deposition

    SciTech Connect

    Marushka, Viktor; Zabeida, Oleg Martinu, Ludvik

    2014-11-01

    The uniformity of ion density is critical for applications relying on the ion assisted deposition technique for the fabrication of the high quality thin films. The authors propose and describe here a method allowing one to calculate the ion density distribution on spherical substrate holders under stationary and rotating conditions for different positions of the ion source. The ion beam shape was approximated by a cos{sup n} function, and the ion current density was represented by a function inversely proportional to the distance from the ion source in accordance with our experimental results. As an example, a calculation of the current density distribution on the spherical cap substrate was performed for a broad beam ion source operated with an anode current of 3 A. The authors propose an approach for process optimization with respect to the ion source position and its inclination, in terms of uniformity and absolute value of the ion current density.

  11. The functional network of ion channels in T lymphocytes

    PubMed Central

    Cahalan, Michael D.; Chandy, K. George

    2011-01-01

    Summary For more than 25 years, it has been widely appreciated that Ca2+ influx is essential to trigger T-lymphocyte activation. Patch clamp analysis, molecular identification, and functional studies using blockers and genetic manipulation have shown that a unique contingent of ion channels orchestrates the initiation, intensity, and duration of the Ca2+ signal. Five distinct types of ion channels – Kv1.3, KCa3.1, Orai1+ stromal interacting molecule 1 (STIM1) [Ca2+-release activating Ca2+ (CRAC) channel], TRPM7, and Clswell – comprise a network that performs functions vital for ongoing cellular homeostasis and for T-cell activation, offering potential targets for immunomodulation. Most recently, the roles of STIM1 and Orai1 have been revealed in triggering and forming the CRAC channel following T-cell receptor engagement. Kv1.3, KCa3.1, STIM1, and Orai1 have been found to cluster at the immunological synapse following contact with an antigen-presenting cell; we discuss how channels at the synapse might function to modulate local signaling. Immuno-imaging approaches are beginning to shed light on ion channel function in vivo. Importantly, the expression pattern of Ca2+ and K+ channels and hence the functional network can adapt depending upon the state of differentiation and activation, and this allows for different stages of an immune response to be targeted specifically. PMID:19754890

  12. Molecular Dynamical Study on Ion Channeling through Peptide Nanotube

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sumiya, Norihito; Igami, Daiki; Takeda, Kyozaburo

    2011-12-01

    We theoretically study the possibility of ion channeling through peptide nanotubes (PNTs). After designing the minimal peptide nanorings (PNRs) and their aggregated form (peptide nanotubes, PNT) computationally, we carry out molecular dynamics (MD) calculations for cation channeling. The present MD calculations show that cation channeling through PNTs occurs. Furthermore, inter-ring hydrogen bonds (HBs) survive and maintain the tubular form of PNTs during cation channeling. We introduce mobility such that cation channeling can be evaluated quantitatively. As the ionic radius of the cation becomes smaller, the effective relaxation time τ becomes larger. Accordingly, mobilities of 10-2˜10-3[cm2/volt/sec] are calculated. In contrast, when an anion (F-) passes through the PNT, the inter-ring HBs are broken, thus inducing breakdown of the peptide backbone. Consequently, H atoms from the broken HBs surround the channeling anion (F-) and halt its motion.

  13. Structural basis of open channel block in a prokaryotic pentameric ligand-gated ion channel.

    PubMed

    Hilf, Ricarda J C; Bertozzi, Carlo; Zimmermann, Iwan; Reiter, Alwin; Trauner, Dirk; Dutzler, Raimund

    2010-11-01

    The flow of ions through cation-selective members of the pentameric ligand-gated ion channel family is inhibited by a structurally diverse class of molecules that bind to the transmembrane pore in the open state of the protein. To obtain insight into the mechanism of channel block, we have investigated the binding of positively charged inhibitors to the open channel of the bacterial homolog GLIC by using X-ray crystallography and electrophysiology. Our studies reveal the location of two regions for interactions, with larger blockers binding in the center of the membrane and divalent transition metal ions binding to the narrow intracellular pore entry. The results provide a structural foundation for understanding the interactions of the channel with inhibitors that is relevant for the entire family.

  14. Multiple Scales in the Simulation of Ion Channels and Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Eisenberg, Bob

    2010-01-01

    Computation of living processes creates great promise for the everyday life of mankind and great challenges for physical scientists. Simulations molecular dynamics have great appeal to biologists as a natural extension of structural biology. Once a biologist sees a structure, she/he wants to see it move. Molecular biology has shown that a small number of atoms, sometimes even one messenger ion, like Ca2+, can control biological function on the scale of cells, organs, tissues, and organisms. Enormously concentrated ions—at number densities of ~20 M—in protein channels and enzymes are responsible for many of the characteristics of living systems, just as highly concentrated ions near electrodes are responsible for many of the characteristics of electrochemical systems. Here we confront the reality of the scale differences of ions. We show that the scale differences needed to simulate all the atoms of biological cells are 107 in linear dimension, 1021 in three dimensions, 109 in resolution, 1011 in time, and 1013 in particle number (to deal with concentrations of Ca2+). These scales must be dealt with simultaneously if the simulation is to deal with most biological functions. Biological function extends across all of them, all at once in most cases. We suggest a computational approach using explicit multiscale analysis instead of implicit simulation of all scales. The approach is based on an energy variational principle EnVarA introduced by Chun Liu to deal with complex fluids. Variational methods deal automatically with multiple interacting components and scales. When an additional component is added to the system, the resulting Euler Lagrange field equations change form automatically—by algebra alone—without additional unknown parameters. Multifaceted interactions are solutions of the resulting equations. We suggest that ionic solutions should be viewed as complex fluids with simple components. Highly concentrated solutions—dominated by interactions of

  15. Divalent ion trapping inside potassium channels of human T lymphocytes

    PubMed Central

    1989-01-01

    Using the patch-clamp whole-cell recording technique, we investigated the influence of external Ca2+, Ba2+, K+, Rb+, and internal Ca2+ on the rate of K+ channel inactivation in the human T lymphocyte-derived cell line, Jurkat E6-1. Raising external Ca2+ or Ba2+, or reducing external K+, accelerated the rate of the K+ current decay during a depolarizing voltage pulse. External Ba2+ also produced a use-dependent block of the K+ channels by entering the open channel and becoming trapped inside. Raising internal Ca2+ accelerated inactivation at lower concentrations than external Ca2+, but increasing the Ca2+ buffering with BAPTA did not affect inactivation. Raising [K+]o or adding Rb+ slowed inactivation by competing with divalent ions. External Rb+ also produced a use-dependent removal of block of K+ channels loaded with Ba2+ or Ca2+. From the removal of this block we found that under normal conditions approximately 25% of the channels were loaded with Ca2+, whereas under conditions with 10 microM internal Ca2+ the proportion of channels loaded with Ca2+ increased to approximately 50%. Removing all the divalent cations from the external and internal solution resulted in the induction of a non-selective, voltage-independent conductance. We conclude that Ca2+ ions from the outside or the inside can bind to a site at the K+ channel and thereby block the channel or accelerate inactivation. PMID:2786551

  16. Roles of Ion Channels in the Environmental Responses of Plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Furuichi, Takuya; Kawano, Tomonori; Tatsumi, Hitoshi; Sokabe, Masahiro

    When plant cells are exposed to environmental stresses or perceive internal signal molecules involved in growth and development, ion channels are transiently activated to convert these stimuli into intracellular signals. Among the ions taken up by plant cells, Ca2+ plays an essential role as an intracellular second messenger in plants; the cytoplasmic free Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]c) is therefore strictly regulated. Signal transduction pathways mediated by changes in [Ca2+]c - termed Ca2+ signaling - are initiated by the activation of Ca2+-permeable channels in many cases. To date, a large body of electrophysiological and recent molecular biological studies have revealed that plants possess Ca2+ channels belonging to distinct types with different gating mechanisms, and a variety of genes for Ca2+-permeable channels have been isolated and functionally characterized. Topics in this chapter focus on long-distance signal translocation in plants and the characteristics of a variety of plant Ca2+-permeable channels including voltage-dependent Ca2+-permeable channels, cyclic nucleotide-gated cation channels, ionotropic glutamate receptors and mechanosensitive channels. We discuss their roles in environmental responses and in the regulation of growth and development.

  17. Ion selectivity and gating mechanisms of FNT channels

    PubMed Central

    Waight, Andrew B.; Czyzewski, Bryan K.; Wang, Da-Neng

    2013-01-01

    The phospholipid bilayer has evolved to be a protective and selective barrier by which the cell maintains high concentrations of life sustaining organic and inorganic material. As gatekeepers responsible for an immense amount of bidirectional chemical traffic between the cytoplasm and extracellular milieu, ion channels have been studied in detail since their postulated existence nearly three-quarters of a century ago. Over the past fifteen years, we have begun to understand how selective permeability can be achieved for both cationic and anionic ions. Our mechanistic knowledge has expanded recently with studies of a large family of anion channels, the Formate Nitrite Transport (FNT) family. This family has proven amenable to structural studies at a resolution high enough to reveal intimate details of ion selectivity and gating. With five representative members having yielded a total of 15 crystal structures, this family represents one of the richest sources of structural information for anion channels. PMID:23773802

  18. Functional properties of ion channels and transporters in tumour vascularization

    PubMed Central

    Fiorio Pla, Alessandra; Munaron, Luca

    2014-01-01

    Vascularization is crucial for solid tumour growth and invasion, providing metabolic support and sustaining metastatic dissemination. It is now accepted that ion channels and transporters play a significant role in driving the cancer growth at all stages. They may represent novel therapeutic, diagnostic and prognostic targets for anti-cancer therapies. On the other hand, although the expression and role of ion channels and transporters in the vascular endothelium is well recognized and subject of recent reviews, only recently has their involvement in tumour vascularization been recognized. Here, we review the current literature on ion channels and transporters directly involved in the angiogenic process. Particular interest will be focused on tumour angiogenesis in vivo as well as in the different steps that drive this process in vitro, such as endothelial cell proliferation, migration, adhesion and tubulogenesis. Moreover, we compare the ‘transportome’ system of tumour vascular network with the physiological one. PMID:24493751

  19. Chaos in an ion-channel free-electron laser with realistic helical wiggler

    SciTech Connect

    Esmaeilzadeh, Mahdi; Taghavi, Amin

    2012-11-15

    Chaotic behavior of an electron motion in a free-electron laser with realistic helical wiggler and ion-channel guiding is studied using Poincare surface-of-section maps. The effects of a realistic electron beam density on chaotic electron dynamics are investigated by considering an electron beam with Gaussian density profile in radial distance. The effects of self-fields on chaotic electron dynamics are investigated for different Gaussian beam parameters, and the results are compared with those of uniform electron beam. It is shown that the electron chaotic behavior can be controlled by changing the Gaussian beam parameter. Also, the chaotic behavior can be controlled by increasing the ion-channel and/or the electron beam densities.

  20. Correlation of ion and beam current densities in Kaufman thrusters.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilbur, P. J.

    1973-01-01

    In the absence of direct impingement erosion, electrostatic thruster accelerator grid lifetime is defined by the charge exchange erosion that occurs at peak values of the ion beam current density. In order to maximize the thrust from an engine with a specified grid lifetime, the ion beam current density profile should therefore be as flat as possible. Knauer (1970) has suggested this can be achieved by establishing a radial plasma uniformity within the thruster discharge chamber; his tests with the radial field thruster provide an example of uniform plasma properties within the chamber and a flat ion beam profile occurring together. It is shown that, in particular, the ion density profile within the chamber determines the beam current density profile, and that a uniform ion density profile at the screen grid end of the discharge chamber should lead to a flat beam current density profile.

  1. Ion channels in artificial bolaamphiphile membranes deposited on sensor chips: optical detection in an ion-channel-based biosensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schalkhammer, Thomas G. M.; Weiss-Wichert, Christof; Smetazko, Michaela M.; Valina-Saba, Miriam

    1997-06-01

    Signal amplification using labels should be replaced by a technique monitoring the biochemical binding event directly. The use of a ligand coupled to an artificial gated membrane ion channel is a new promising strategy. Binding of protein- or DNA/RNA-analytes at ligand modified peptide channels results in an on/off-response of the channel current due to channel closure or distortion. The sensor consists of stable transmembrane channels with a ligand bound covalently at the peptide channel entrance, a sensor chip with a photostructurized hydrophobic polymer frame, a hydrophilic ion conducting membrane support, a lipid membrane incorporating the engineered ion channels, and a current amplifier or a sensitive fluorescence monitor. Detection of channel opening or closure can ether be obtained by directly monitoring membrane conductivity or a transient change of pH or ion concentration within the membrane compartment. This change can be induced by electrochemical or optical means and its decay is directly correlated to the permeability of the membrane. The ion concentration in the sub membrane compartment was monitored by incorporation of fluorescent indicator dyes. To obtain the stable sensor membrane the lipid layer had to be attached on a support and the floating of the second lipid membrane on top of the first one had to be prevented. Both problems do not occur using our new circular C44-C76 bolaamphiphilic lipids consisting of a long hydrophobic core region and two hydrophilic heads. Use of maleic ester-head groups enabled us to easily modify the lipids with amines, thioles, alcohols, phosphates, boronic acid as well as fluorescent dyes. The properties of these membranes were studied using LB and fluorescence techniques. Based on this detection principle miniaturized sensor chips with significantly enhanced sensitivity and large multi analyte arrays are under construction.

  2. Identification and characterization of a bacterial hydrosulphide ion channel

    SciTech Connect

    Czyzewski, Bryan K.; Wang, Da-Neng

    2012-10-26

    The hydrosulphide ion (HS{sup -}) and its undissociated form, hydrogen sulphide (H{sub 2}S), which are believed to have been critical to the origin of life on Earth, remain important in physiology and cellular signalling. As a major metabolite in anaerobic bacterial growth, hydrogen sulphide is a product of both assimilatory and dissimilatory sulphate reduction. These pathways can reduce various oxidized sulphur compounds including sulphate, sulphite and thiosulphate. The dissimilatory sulphate reduction pathway uses this molecule as the terminal electron acceptor for anaerobic respiration, in which process it produces excess amounts of H{sub 2}S. The reduction of sulphite is a key intermediate step in all sulphate reduction pathways. In Clostridium and Salmonella, an inducible sulphite reductase is directly linked to the regeneration of NAD{sup +}, which has been suggested to have a role in energy production and growth, as well as in the detoxification of sulphite. Above a certain concentration threshold, both H{sub 2}S and HS{sup -} inhibit cell growth by binding the metal centres of enzymes and cytochrome oxidase, necessitating a release mechanism for the export of this toxic metabolite from the cell. Here we report the identification of a hydrosulphide ion channel in the pathogen Clostridium difficile through a combination of genetic, biochemical and functional approaches. The HS{sup -} channel is a member of the formate/nitrite transport family, in which about 50 hydrosulphide ion channels form a third subfamily alongside those for formate (FocA) and for nitrite (NirC). The hydrosulphide ion channel is permeable to formate and nitrite as well as to HS{sup -} ions. Such polyspecificity can be explained by the conserved ion selectivity filter observed in the channel's crystal structure. The channel has a low open probability and is tightly regulated, to avoid decoupling of the membrane proton gradient.

  3. Modeling ion channel dynamics through reflected stochastic differential equations.

    PubMed

    Dangerfield, Ciara E; Kay, David; Burrage, Kevin

    2012-05-01

    Ion channels are membrane proteins that open and close at random and play a vital role in the electrical dynamics of excitable cells. The stochastic nature of the conformational changes these proteins undergo can be significant, however current stochastic modeling methodologies limit the ability to study such systems. Discrete-state Markov chain models are seen as the "gold standard," but are computationally intensive, restricting investigation of stochastic effects to the single-cell level. Continuous stochastic methods that use stochastic differential equations (SDEs) to model the system are more efficient but can lead to simulations that have no biological meaning. In this paper we show that modeling the behavior of ion channel dynamics by a reflected SDE ensures biologically realistic simulations, and we argue that this model follows from the continuous approximation of the discrete-state Markov chain model. Open channel and action potential statistics from simulations of ion channel dynamics using the reflected SDE are compared with those of a discrete-state Markov chain method. Results show that the reflected SDE simulations are in good agreement with the discrete-state approach. The reflected SDE model therefore provides a computationally efficient method to simulate ion channel dynamics while preserving the distributional properties of the discrete-state Markov chain model and also ensuring biologically realistic solutions. This framework could easily be extended to other biochemical reaction networks.

  4. Ferroelectric active models of ion channels in biomembranes.

    PubMed

    Bystrov, V S; Lakhno, V D; Molchanov, M

    1994-06-21

    Ferroactive models of ion channels in the theory of biological membranes are presented. The main equations are derived and their possible solutions are shown. The estimates of some experimentally measured parameters are given. Possible physical consequences of the suggested models are listed and the possibility of their experimental finding is discussed. The functioning of the biomembrane's ion channel is qualitatively described on the basis of the suggested ferroactive models. The main directions and prospects for development of the ferroactive approach to the theory of biological membranes and their structures are indicated.

  5. Ion channels and the transduction of light signals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spalding, E. P.; Evans, M. L. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    Studies of biological light-sensing mechanisms are revealing important roles for ion channels. Photosensory transduction in plants is no exception. In this article, the evidence that ion channels perform such signal-transducing functions in the complex array of mechanisms that bring about plant photomorphogenesis will be reviewed and discussed. The examples selected for discussion range from light-gradient detection in unicellular algae to the photocontrol of stem growth in Arabidopsis. Also included is some discussion of the technical aspects of studies that combine electrophysiology and photobiology.

  6. Narrow conducting channels defined by helium ion beam damage

    SciTech Connect

    Cheeks, T.L.; Roukes, M.L.; Scherer, A.; Craighead, H.G.

    1988-11-14

    We have developed a new technique for patterning narrow conducting channels in GaAs-AlGaAs two-dimensional electron gas (2DEG) materials. A low-energy He ion beam successfully patterned narrow wires with little or no etching of the thin GaAs cap. The damage propagation of the He ion even at low energies was sufficient to decrease the mobility of the 2DEG located deep within the structure. The damage can be removed by a low-temperature anneal but remains stable at room temperature. Conducting channels as narrow as 300 nm have been fabricated and measured using low-temperature magnetoresistance.

  7. Collective Diffusion Model for Ion Conduction through Microscopic Channels

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yingting; Zhu, Fangqiang

    2013-01-01

    Ion conduction through microscopic channels is of central importance in both biology and nanotechnology. To better understand the current-voltage (I-V) dependence of ion channels, here we describe and prove a collective diffusion model that quantitatively relates the spontaneous ion permeation at equilibrium to the stationary ionic fluxes driven by small voltages. The model makes it possible to determine the channel conductance in the linear I-V range from equilibrium simulations without the application of a voltage. To validate the theory, we perform molecular-dynamics simulations on two channels—a conical-shaped nanopore and the transmembrane pore of an α-hemolysin—under both equilibrium and nonequilibrium conditions. The simulations reveal substantial couplings between the motions of cations and anions, which are effectively captured by the collective coordinate in the model. Although the two channels exhibit very different linear ranges in the I-V curves, in both cases the channel conductance at small voltages is in reasonable agreement with the prediction from the equilibrium simulation. The simulations also suggest that channel charges, rather than geometric asymmetry, play a more prominent role in current rectification. PMID:23442858

  8. Regulation of heartbeat by G protein-coupled ion channels.

    PubMed

    Brown, A M

    1990-12-01

    The coupling of ion channels to receptors by G proteins is the subject of this American Physiological Society Walter B. Cannon Memorial "Physiology in Perspective" Lecture. This subject is particularly appropriate because it includes a molecular explanation of a homeostatic mechanism involving the autonomic nervous system and the latter subject preoccupied Dr. Cannon during most of his career. With the use of reconstitution methods, we and others have shown that heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide-binding (G) proteins couple receptors to ion channels by both membrane-delimited, direct pathways and cytoplasmic second messenger pathways. Furthermore, one set of receptors may be coupled to as many as three different sets of ion channels to form networks. Dual G protein pathways lead to the prediction of biphasic ion current responses in cell signaling, and this prediction was confirmed. In sinoatrial pacemaker cells, the pacemaking hyperpolarization-activated inward current (If) is directly regulated by the G proteins Gs and Go, and the two can act simultaneously. This could explain the classical observation that vagal inhibition of heart rate is greater during sympathetic stimulation. Because deactivation of the muscarinic response occurs much faster than the G protein alpha-subunit hydrolyzes guanosine 5'-triphosphate, we looked for accessory cellular factors. A surprising result was that the small monomeric ras G protein blocked the muscarinic pathway. The significance of this observation is unknown, but it appears that small and large G proteins may interact in ion channel signaling pathways.

  9. Regulation of heartbeat by G protein-coupled ion channels.

    PubMed

    Brown, A M

    1990-12-01

    The coupling of ion channels to receptors by G proteins is the subject of this American Physiological Society Walter B. Cannon Memorial "Physiology in Perspective" Lecture. This subject is particularly appropriate because it includes a molecular explanation of a homeostatic mechanism involving the autonomic nervous system and the latter subject preoccupied Dr. Cannon during most of his career. With the use of reconstitution methods, we and others have shown that heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide-binding (G) proteins couple receptors to ion channels by both membrane-delimited, direct pathways and cytoplasmic second messenger pathways. Furthermore, one set of receptors may be coupled to as many as three different sets of ion channels to form networks. Dual G protein pathways lead to the prediction of biphasic ion current responses in cell signaling, and this prediction was confirmed. In sinoatrial pacemaker cells, the pacemaking hyperpolarization-activated inward current (If) is directly regulated by the G proteins Gs and Go, and the two can act simultaneously. This could explain the classical observation that vagal inhibition of heart rate is greater during sympathetic stimulation. Because deactivation of the muscarinic response occurs much faster than the G protein alpha-subunit hydrolyzes guanosine 5'-triphosphate, we looked for accessory cellular factors. A surprising result was that the small monomeric ras G protein blocked the muscarinic pathway. The significance of this observation is unknown, but it appears that small and large G proteins may interact in ion channel signaling pathways. PMID:1701981

  10. Crystal orientation mapping via ion channeling: An alternative to EBSD.

    PubMed

    Langlois, C; Douillard, T; Yuan, H; Blanchard, N P; Descamps-Mandine, A; Van de Moortèle, B; Rigotti, C; Epicier, T

    2015-10-01

    A new method, which we name ion CHanneling ORientation Determination (iCHORD), is proposed to obtain orientation maps on polycrystals via ion channeling. The iChord method exploits the dependence between grain orientation and ion beam induced secondary electron image contrast. At each position of the region of interest, intensity profiles are obtained from a series of images acquired with different orientations with respect to the ion beam. The profiles are then compared to a database of theoretical profiles of known orientation. The Euler triplet associated to the most similar theoretical profile gives the orientation at that position. The proof-of-concept is obtained on a titanium nitride sample. The potentialities of iCHORD as an alternative to EBSD are then discussed. PMID:26094201

  11. The Structure and Transport of Water and Hydrated Ions Within Hydrophobic, Nanoscale Channels

    SciTech Connect

    Holt, J K; Herberg, J L; Wu, Y; Schwegler, E; Mehta, A

    2009-06-15

    The purpose of this project includes an experimental and modeling investigation into water and hydrated ion structure and transport at nanomaterials interfaces. This is a topic relevant to understanding the function of many biological systems such as aquaporins that efficiently shuttle water and ion channels that permit selective transport of specific ions across cell membranes. Carbon nanotubes (CNT) are model nanoscale, hydrophobic channels that can be functionalized, making them artificial analogs for these biological channels. This project investigates the microscopic properties of water such as water density distributions and dynamics within CNTs using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) and the structure of hydrated ions at CNT interfaces via X-ray Absorption Spectroscopy (XAS). Another component of this work is molecular simulation, which can predict experimental measurables such as the proton relaxation times, chemical shifts, and can compute the electronic structure of CNTs. Some of the fundamental questions this work is addressing are: (1) what is the length scale below which nanoscale effects such as molecular ordering become important, (2) is there a relationship between molecular ordering and transport?, and (3) how do ions interact with CNT interfaces? These are questions of interest to the scientific community, but they also impact the future generation of sensors, filters, and other devices that operate on the nanometer length scale. To enable some of the proposed applications of CNTs as ion filtration media and electrolytic supercapacitors, a detailed knowledge of water and ion structure at CNT interfaces is critical.

  12. Charge state dependence of channeled ion energy loss

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golovchenko, J. A.; Goland, A. N.; Rosner, J. S.; Thorn, C. E.; Wegner, H. E.; Knudsen, H.; Moak, C. D.

    1981-02-01

    The charge state dependence of channeled ion energy loss has been determined for a series of ions ranging from fluorine to chlorine along the <110> direction in a silicon crystal. Energy losses for both bare ions and ions partially clothed with bound electrons at EA≅3 MeV/amu have been measured. The energy-loss rate for bare ions follows a strict Z21 scaling and agrees reasonably well with quantal perturbation calculations without the need for polarization or Bloch corrections. An explanation for this result is discussed. The clothed-ion energy losses appear to demonstrate screening effects that agree qualitatively with simple estimates. The angular dependence of the observed energy-loss effects is also presented.

  13. Single Channel Activity from Ion Channels in Engineered Tethered Bilayer Membrane Arrays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keizer, Henk; Fine, Daniel; K"{O}Per, Ingo; Anderson, Peter

    2005-11-01

    The demand for rapid in situ detection of chemical and biological analytes at high sensitivity has increased interest in the development of biosensors like the commercially available compact glucose sensor. Engineered membrane bound ion channels are promising biological receptors since they would allow for the stochastic detection of analytes at high sensitivity, they can be mutated to alter sensitivity, and they produce a well-defined read-out that is inherently suitable for digitization. In order to perform stochastic sensing it is necessary to be able to measure the ion currents associated with single ion channel opening and closing events. Although sensors based on supported bilayers containing various pore forming proteins have been described, none of these systems have recorded single channel activity. Here we describe the measurement of stochastic activity from synthetic single ion channels, based on the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) from Torpedo californica, inserted into individual pixels of a microelectrode array device. The limited size of the gold sense pad surface, 100x100 μm, and the electrical stability of the overlying lipid bilayer membrane make each pixel sensitive enough to measure single ion channel currents in the picoampere range.

  14. Theoretical and computational models of biological ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roux, Benoit

    2004-03-01

    A theoretical framework for describing ion conduction through biological molecular pores is established and explored. The framework is based on a statistical mechanical formulation of the transmembrane potential (1) and of the equilibrium multi-ion potential of mean forces through selective ion channels (2). On the basis of these developments, it is possible to define computational schemes to address questions about the non-equilibrium flow of ions through ion channels. In the case of narrow channels (gramicidin or KcsA), it is possible to characterize the ion conduction in terms of the potential of mean force of the ions along the channel axis (i.e., integrating out the off-axis motions). This has been used for gramicidin (3) and for KcsA (4,5). In the case of wide pores (i.e., OmpF porin), this is no longer a good idea, but it is possible to use a continuum solvent approximations. In this case, a grand canonical monte carlo brownian dynamics algorithm was constructed for simulating the non-equilibrium flow of ions through wide pores. The results were compared with those from the Poisson-Nernst-Planck mean-field electrodiffusion theory (6-8). References; 1. B. Roux, Biophys. J. 73:2980-2989 (1997); 2. B. Roux, Biophys. J. 77, 139-153 (1999); 3. Allen, Andersen and Roux, PNAS (2004, in press); 4. Berneche and Roux. Nature, 414:73-77 (2001); 5. Berneche and Roux. PNAS, 100:8644-8648 (2003); 6. W. Im and S. Seefeld and B. Roux, Biophys. J. 79:788-801 (2000); 7. W. Im and B. Roux, J. Chem. Phys. 115:4850-4861 (2001); 8. W. Im and B. Roux, J. Mol. Biol. 322:851-869 (2002).

  15. Brownian Dynamics: Simulation for Ion Channel Permeation1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chung, Shin-Ho; Krishnamurthy, Vikram

    All living cells are surrounded by a thin membrane, composed of two layers of phospholipid molecules, called the lipid bilayer. This thin membrane effectively confines some ions and molecules inside and exchanges others with outside and acts as a hydrophobic, low dielectric barrier to hydrophilic molecules. Because of a large difference between the dielectric constants of the membrane and electrolyte solutions, no charged particles, such as Na+, K+, and Cl- ions, can jump across the membrane. The amount of energy needed to transport one monovalent ion, in either direction across the membrane, known as the Born energy, is enormously high. For a living cell to function, however, the proper ionic gradient has to be maintained, and ions at times must move across the membrane to maintain the potential difference across the membrane and to generate synaptic and action potentials. The delicate tasks of regulating the transport of ions across the membrane are carried out by biological nanotubes called "ion channels," water-filled conduits inserted across the cell membrane through which ions can freely move in and out when the gates are open. These ion channels can be viewed as biological sub-nanotubes, the typical pore diameters of which are ~10-9 m or 10 Å.

  16. Ion Selectivity Mechanism in a Bacterial Pentameric Ligand-Gated Ion Channel

    SciTech Connect

    Fritsch, Sebastian; Ivanov, Ivaylo; Wang, Hailong; Cheng, Xiaolin

    2010-01-01

    The proton-gated ion channel from Gloeobacter violaceus (GLIC) is a prokaryotic homolog of the eukaryotic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor that responds to the binding of neurotransmitter acetylcholine and mediates fast signal transmission. Recent emergence of a high-resolution crystal structure of GLIC captured in a potentially open state allowed detailed, atomic-level insight into ion conduction and selectivity mechanisms in these channels. Herein, we have examined the barriers to ion conduction and origins of ion selectivity in the GLIC channel by the construction of potential-of-mean-force profiles for sodium and chloride ions inside the transmembrane region. Our calculations reveal that the GLIC channel is open for a sodium ion to transport, but presents a 11 kcal/mol free energy barrier for a chloride ion. Our collective findings identify three distinct contributions to the observed preference for the permeant ions. First, there is a substantial contribution due to a ring of negatively charged glutamate residues (E-2 ) at the narrow intracellular end of the channel. The negative electrostatics of this region and the ability of the glutamate side chains to directly bind cations would strongly favor the passage of sodium ions while hindering translocation of chloride ions. Second, our results imply a significant hydrophobic contribution to selectivity linked to differences in the desolvation penalty for the sodium versus chloride ions in the central hydrophobic region of the pore. This hydrophobic contribution is evidenced by the large free energy barriers experienced by Cl in the middle of the pore for both GLIC and the E-2 A mutant. Finally, there is a distinct contribution arising from the overall negative electrostatics of the channel.

  17. The ion composition of cooling, variable-density interstellar gas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suchkov, A. A.; Shchekinov, Y. A.

    1986-06-01

    The ion composition of rarefied interstellar gas cooling from about one million K to about 10,000 K is calculated. The time dependence of logarithmic relative ion densities is determined in an isobaric-cooling model and in a model with an initial adiabatic expansion. It is shown that so long as T is greater than 10,000 K, the N(C IV)/N(O VI) ion density ratio may be used to test the origin of nonstable behavior.

  18. Finite element simulation of the gating mechanism of mechanosensitive ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bavi, Navid; Qin, Qinghua; Martinac, Boris

    2013-08-01

    In order to eliminate limitations of existing experimental or computational methods (such as patch-clamp technique or molecular dynamic analysis) a finite element (FE) model for multi length-scale and time-scale investigation on the gating mechanism of mechanosensitive (MS) ion channels has been established. Gating force value (from typical patch clamping values) needed to activate Prokaryotic MS ion channels was applied as tensional force to the FE model of the lipid bilayer. Making use of the FE results, we have discussed the effects of the geometrical and the material properties of the Escherichia coli MscL mechanosensitive ion channel opening in relation to the membrane's Young's modulus (which will vary depending on the cell type or cholesterol density in an artificial membrane surrounding the MscL ion channel). The FE model has shown that when the cell membrane stiffens the required channel activation force increases considerably. This is in agreement with experimental results taken from the literature. In addition, the present study quantifies the relationship between the membrane stress distribution around a `hole' for modeling purposes and the stress concentration in the place transmembrane proteins attached to the hole by applying an appropriate mesh refinement as well as well defining contact condition in these areas.

  19. Insight toward epithelial Na+ channel mechanism revealed by the acid-sensing ion channel 1 structure.

    PubMed

    Stockand, James D; Staruschenko, Alexander; Pochynyuk, Oleh; Booth, Rachell E; Silverthorn, Dee U

    2008-09-01

    The epithelial Na(+) channel/degenerin (ENaC/DEG) protein family includes a diverse group of ion channels, including nonvoltage-gated Na(+) channels of epithelia and neurons, and the acid-sensing ion channel 1 (ASIC1). In mammalian epithelia, ENaC helps regulate Na(+) and associated water transport, making it a critical determinant of systemic blood pressure and pulmonary mucosal fluidity. In the nervous system, ENaC/DEG proteins are related to sensory transduction. While the importance and physiological function of these ion channels are established, less is known about their structure. One hallmark of the ENaC/DEG channel family is that each channel subunit has only two transmembrane domains connected by an exceedingly large extracellular loop. This subunit structure was recently confirmed when Jasti and colleagues determined the crystal structure of chicken ASIC1, a neuronal acid-sensing ENaC/DEG channel. By mapping ENaC to the structural coordinates of cASIC1, as we do here, we hope to provide insight toward ENaC structure. ENaC, like ASIC1, appears to be a trimeric channel containing 1alpha, 1beta, and 1gamma subunit. Heterotrimeric ENaC and monomeric ENaC subunits within the trimer possibly contain many of the major secondary, tertiary, and quaternary features identified in cASIC1 with a few subtle but critical differences. These differences are expected to have profound effects on channel behavior. In particular, they may contribute to ENaC insensitivity to acid and to its constitutive activity in the absence of time- and ligand-dependent inactivation. Experiments resulting from this comparison of cASIC1 and ENaC may help clarify unresolved issues related to ENaC architecture, and may help identify secondary structures and residues critical to ENaC function.

  20. Simulation of a prebunched free-electron laser with planar wiggler and ion channel guiding

    SciTech Connect

    Rouhani, M. H.; Maraghechi, B.

    2010-02-15

    A one-dimensional and nonlinear simulation of a free-electron laser with a prebunched electron beam, a planar wiggler, and ion-channel guiding is presented. Using Maxwell's equations and full Lorentz force equation of motion for the electron beam, a set of coupled nonlinear differential equations is derived in slowly varying amplitude and wave number approximation and is solved numerically. This set of equations describes self-consistently the longitudinal dependence of radiation amplitude, growth rates, space-charge amplitude, and wave numbers together with the evolution of the electron beam. Because of using full Lorentz force equation of motion, it is possible to treat the injection of the beam into the wiggler. The electron beam is assumed cold, propagates with a relativistic velocity, ions are assumed immobile, and slippage is ignored. The effect of prebunched electron beam on saturation is studied. Ion-channel density is varied and the results for groups I and II orbits are compared with the case when the ion channel is absent. It is found that by using an ion channel/a prebunched electron beam growth rate can be increased, saturation length can be decreased, and the saturated amplitude of the radiation can be increased.

  1. A TRPV family ion channel required for hearing in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Kim, Janghwan; Chung, Yun Doo; Park, Dae-Young; Choi, SooKyung; Shin, Dong Wook; Soh, Heun; Lee, Hye Won; Son, Wonseok; Yim, Jeongbin; Park, Chul-Seung; Kernan, Maurice J; Kim, Changsoo

    2003-07-01

    The many types of insect ear share a common sensory element, the chordotonal organ, in which sound-induced antennal or tympanal vibrations are transmitted to ciliated sensory neurons and transduced to receptor potentials. However, the molecular identity of the transducing ion channels in chordotonal neurons, or in any auditory system, is still unknown. Drosophila that are mutant for NOMPC, a transient receptor potential (TRP) superfamily ion channel, lack receptor potentials and currents in tactile bristles but retain most of the antennal sound-evoked response, suggesting that a different channel is the primary transducer in chordotonal organs. Here we describe the Drosophila Nanchung (Nan) protein, an ion channel subunit similar to vanilloid-receptor-related (TRPV) channels of the TRP superfamily. Nan mediates hypo-osmotically activated calcium influx and cation currents in cultured cells. It is expressed in vivo exclusively in chordotonal neurons and is localized to their sensory cilia. Antennal sound-evoked potentials are completely absent in mutants lacking Nan, showing that it is an essential component of the chordotonal mechanotransducer.

  2. Contributions of intracellular ions to kv channel voltage sensor dynamics.

    PubMed

    Goodchild, Samuel J; Fedida, David

    2012-01-01

    Voltage-sensing domains (VSDs) of Kv channels control ionic conductance through coupling of the movement of charged residues in the S4 segment to conformational changes at the cytoplasmic region of the pore domain, that allow K(+) ions to flow. Conformational transitions within the VSD are induced by changes in the applied voltage across the membrane field. However, several other factors not directly linked to the voltage-dependent movement of charged residues within the voltage sensor impact the dynamics of the voltage sensor, such as inactivation, ionic conductance, intracellular ion identity, and block of the channel by intracellular ligands. The effect of intracellular ions on voltage sensor dynamics is of importance in the interpretation of gating current measurements and the physiology of pore/voltage sensor coupling. There is a significant amount of variability in the reported kinetics of voltage sensor deactivation kinetics of Kv channels attributed to different mechanisms such as open state stabilization, immobilization, and relaxation processes of the voltage sensor. Here we separate these factors and focus on the causal role that intracellular ions can play in allosterically modulating the dynamics of Kv voltage sensor deactivation kinetics. These considerations are of critical importance in understanding the molecular determinants of the complete channel gating cycle from activation to deactivation.

  3. Ion channel networks in the control of cerebral blood flow.

    PubMed

    Longden, Thomas A; Hill-Eubanks, David C; Nelson, Mark T

    2016-03-01

    One hundred and twenty five years ago, Roy and Sherrington made the seminal observation that neuronal stimulation evokes an increase in cerebral blood flow.(1) Since this discovery, researchers have attempted to uncover how the cells of the neurovascular unit-neurons, astrocytes, vascular smooth muscle cells, vascular endothelial cells and pericytes-coordinate their activity to control this phenomenon. Recent work has revealed that ionic fluxes through a diverse array of ion channel species allow the cells of the neurovascular unit to engage in multicellular signaling processes that dictate local hemodynamics.In this review we center our discussion on two major themes: (1) the roles of ion channels in the dynamic modulation of parenchymal arteriole smooth muscle membrane potential, which is central to the control of arteriolar diameter and therefore must be harnessed to permit changes in downstream cerebral blood flow, and (2) the striking similarities in the ion channel complements employed in astrocytic endfeet and endothelial cells, enabling dual control of smooth muscle from either side of the blood-brain barrier. We conclude with a discussion of the emerging roles of pericyte and capillary endothelial cell ion channels in neurovascular coupling, which will provide fertile ground for future breakthroughs in the field. PMID:26661232

  4. Energetics of Multi-Ion Conduction Pathways in Potassium Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Potassium ion channels form pores in cell membranes, allowing potassium ions through while preventing the passage of sodium ions. Despite numerous high-resolution structures, it is not yet possible to relate their structure to their single molecule function other than at a qualitative level. Over the past decade, there has been a concerted effort using molecular dynamics to capture the thermodynamics and kinetics of conduction by calculating potentials of mean force (PMF). These can be used, in conjunction with the electro-diffusion theory, to predict the conductance of a specific ion channel. Here, we calculate seven independent PMFs, thereby studying the differences between two potassium ion channels, the effect of the CHARMM CMAP forcefield correction, and the sensitivity and reproducibility of the method. Thermodynamically stable ion–water configurations of the selectivity filter can be identified from all the free energy landscapes, but the heights of the kinetic barriers for potassium ions to move through the selectivity filter are, in nearly all cases, too high to predict conductances in line with experiment. This implies it is not currently feasible to predict the conductance of potassium ion channels, but other simpler channels may be more tractable. PMID:24353479

  5. Ion Channels in Regulation of Neuronal Regenerative Activities

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Dongdong; Yu, Shan Ping; Wei, Ling

    2014-01-01

    The regeneration of the nervous system is achieved by the regrowth of damaged neuronal axons, the restoration of damaged nerve cells, and the generation of new neurons to replace those that have been lost. In the central nervous system the regenerative ability is limited by various factors including damaged oligodendrocytes that are essential for neuronal axon myelination, an emerging glial scar, and secondary injury in the surrounding areas. Stem cell transplantation therapy has been shown to be a promising approach to treating neurodegenerative diseases because of the regenerative capability of stem cells that secrete neurotrophic factors and give rise to differentiated progeny. However, some issues of stem cell transplantation, such as survival, homing, and efficiency of neural differentiation after transplantation, still need to be improved. Ion channels allow for the exchange of ions between the intra- and extracellular spaces or between the cytoplasm and organelles. These ion channels maintain the ion homeostasis in the brain and play a key role in regulating the physiological function of the nervous system and allowing the processing of neuronal signals. In seeking a potential strategy to enhance the efficacy of stem cell therapy in neurological and neurodegenerative diseases, this review briefly summarizes the roles of ion channels in cell proliferation, differentiation, migration, chemotropic axon guidance of growth cones and axon outgrowth after injury. PMID:24399572

  6. Ion Channels as Single Molecular Sensors: Extracting Information from Noise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goychuk, Igor

    2001-03-01

    Ion channels are the evolution's solution to participate in electrical signaling. A question that has been haunting the Stochastic Resonance (SR) community ever since its first evidence in biological systems in the early nineties is whether -- and how -- SR occurs in single and/or coupled ion channels. Up to this very date, there exists no convincing experimental proof that SR actually takes place in a realistic ion channel such as the Shaker IR potassium-selective channel. The idea, however, that the environmental noise assists in a beneficial manner the transduction of electric encoded information is appealing; i.e. the occurrence of SR on this most fundamental level of biological complexity should not come as too big a surprise. In order to elucidate this prominent challenge we theoretically have investigated SR for a simple, yet realistic enough model of a voltage-gated ion channel. In doing so, we model the process of successive opening and closing events by a continuous time, two-state random point process with experimentally determined residence time distributions. Using measures of information theory such as the rate of information gain we have shown that SR indeed occurs when the closed state of the channel is predominantly dwelled. With increasing opening probability noise deteriorates the rate of information transfer that eventually assumes a robust behavior, which is essentially insensitive to noise. (I. Goychuk and P. Hänggi, Phys. Rev. E 61), 4272 (2000); Eur. Biophys. J. 29, 345 (2000). Moreover, we study additional SR measures such as the spectral amplification and the signal-to-noise ratio. In a next step, we generalize this investigation to account also for non-Markovian conductance fluctuations with nonexponential residence time distributions and study their consequences for the likelihood for SR to persist.

  7. Electrical pumping of potassium ions against an external concentration gradient in a biological ion channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Queralt-Martín, María; García-Giménez, Elena; Aguilella, Vicente M.; Ramirez, Patricio; Mafe, Salvador; Alcaraz, Antonio

    2013-07-01

    We show experimentally and theoretically that significant currents can be obtained with a biological ion channel, the OmpF porin of Escherichia coli, using zero-average potentials as driving forces. The channel rectifying properties can be used to pump potassium ions against an external concentration gradient under asymmetric pH conditions. The results are discussed in terms of the ionic selectivity and rectification ratio of the channel. The physical concepts involved may be applied to separation processes with synthetic nanopores and to bioelectrical phenomena.

  8. Density of voltage-gated potassium channels is a bifurcation parameter in pyramidal neurons

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Hugh P. C.; Århem, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Several types of intrinsic dynamics have been identified in brain neurons. Type 1 excitability is characterized by a continuous frequency-stimulus relationship and, thus, an arbitrarily low frequency at threshold current. Conversely, Type 2 excitability is characterized by a discontinuous frequency-stimulus relationship and a nonzero threshold frequency. In previous theoretical work we showed that the density of Kv channels is a bifurcation parameter, such that increasing the Kv channel density in a neuron model transforms Type 1 excitability into Type 2 excitability. Here we test this finding experimentally, using the dynamic clamp technique on Type 1 pyramidal cells in rat cortex. We found that increasing the density of slow Kv channels leads to a shift from Type 1 to Type 2 threshold dynamics, i.e., a distinct onset frequency, subthreshold oscillations, and reduced latency to first spike. In addition, the action potential was resculptured, with a narrower spike width and more pronounced afterhyperpolarization. All changes could be captured with a two-dimensional model. It may seem paradoxical that an increase in slow K channel density can lead to a higher threshold firing frequency; however, this can be explained in terms of bifurcation theory. In contrast to previous work, we argue that an increased outward current leads to a change in dynamics in these neurons without a rectification of the current-voltage curve. These results demonstrate that the behavior of neurons is determined by the global interactions of their dynamical elements and not necessarily simply by individual types of ion channels. PMID:25339708

  9. Molecular Motions in Ion Channels: a Possible Link to Noise in Single Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tieleman, D. Peter

    2003-05-01

    Molecular dynamics simulations of proteins and lipid bilayers give detailed information on molecular motions on a timescale of up to a microsecond. Collective motions of proteins are thought to play a functionally important role in many water-soluble proteins and simulations of potassium channel structures show that ion transport might be linked to structural fluctuations in key areas of the protein. I describe simulations of two model channels —a channel consisting of parallel alpha-helices formed by the antimicrobial peptide alamethicin, and the bacterial porin OmpF, a large beta-barrel protein that forms three water-filled pores that allow transport of small molecules. Structural fluctuations in alamethicin during ion transport are hypothesized to be a possible source of high-frequency noise observed in single-channel conductance measurements. In a model of the alamethicin channel on a 100 ns time scale almost all the structural fluctuations are in individual helices with no evidence for collective motions of the channel as a whole. In porins, single channel measurements can obtain information on the interaction between permeating molecules and the protein. I present recent simulations that study the interactions between glucose and alanine with OmpF.

  10. Ion channel noise can explain firing correlation in auditory nerves.

    PubMed

    Moezzi, Bahar; Iannella, Nicolangelo; McDonnell, Mark D

    2016-10-01

    Neural spike trains are commonly characterized as a Poisson point process. However, the Poisson assumption is a poor model for spiking in auditory nerve fibres because it is known that interspike intervals display positive correlation over long time scales and negative correlation over shorter time scales. We have therefore developed a biophysical model based on the well-known Meddis model of the peripheral auditory system, to produce simulated auditory nerve fibre spiking statistics that more closely match the firing correlations observed in empirical data. We achieve this by introducing biophysically realistic ion channel noise to an inner hair cell membrane potential model that includes fractal fast potassium channels and deterministic slow potassium channels. We succeed in producing simulated spike train statistics that match empirically observed firing correlations. Our model thus replicates macro-scale stochastic spiking statistics in the auditory nerve fibres due to modeling stochasticity at the micro-scale of potassium channels. PMID:27480847

  11. Ion Selectivity Mechanism in a Bacterial Pentameric Ligand-Gated Ion Channel

    SciTech Connect

    Fritsch, Sebastian M; Ivanov, Ivaylo N; Wang, Hailong; Cheng, Xiaolin

    2011-01-01

    The proton-gated ion channel from Gloeobacter violaceus (GLIC) is a prokaryotic homolog of the eukaryotic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) that responds to the binding of neurotransmitter acetylcholine and mediates fast signal transmission. Recent emergence of a high resolution crystal structure of GLIC captured in a potentially open state allowed detailed, atomic-level insight into ion conduction and selectivity mechanisms in these channels. Herein, we have examined the barriers to ion conduction and origins of ion selectivity in the GLIC channel by the construction of potential of mean force (PMF) profiles for sodium and chloride ions inside the transmembrane region. Our calculations reveal that the GLIC channel is open for a sodium ion to transport, but presents a ~10 kcal/mol free energy barrier for a chloride ion, which arises primarily from the unfavorable interactions with a ring of negatively charged glutamate residues (E-2 ) at the intracellular end and a ring of hydrophobic residues (I9 ) in the middle of the transmembrane domain. Our collective findings further suggest that the charge selection mechanism can, to a large extent, be attributed to the narrow intracellular end and a ring of glutamate residues in this position their strong negative electrostatics and ability to bind cations. By contrast, E19 at the extracellular entrance only plays a minor role in ion selectivity of GLIC. In addition to electrostatics, both ion hydration and protein dynamics are found to be crucial for ion conduction as well, which explains why a chloride ion experiences a much greater barrier than a sodium ion in the hydrophobic region of the pore.

  12. A paradox concerning ion permeation of the delayed rectifier potassium ion channel in squid giant axons.

    PubMed Central

    Clay, J R

    1991-01-01

    1. The fully activated current-voltage relation (I-V) of the delayed rectifier potassium ion channel in squid giant axons has a non-linear dependence upon the driving force, V-EK, as I have previously demonstrated, where V is membrane potential and EK is the equilibrium potential for potassium ions. 2. The non-linearity of the I-V relation and its dependence upon external potassium ion concentration are both well described, phenomenologically, by the Goldman-Hodgkin-Katz (GHK) flux equation, as I have also previously demonstrated. As illustrated below, this result can be modelled using the Eyring rate theory of single-file diffusion of ions through a channel in the low-occupancy limit of the theory. 3. The GHK equation analysis and the low-occupancy limit of the Eyring rate theory are both consistent with the independence principle for movement of ions through the channel, which is at odds with tracer flux ratio results from the delayed rectifier, published elsewhere. Those results suggest that the channel is multiply occupied by two, or perhaps three, ions. 4. The resolution of this paradox is provided by a triple-binding site, multiple-occupancy model in which only one vacancy, at most, is allowed in the channel. This model predicts current-voltage relations which are consistent with the data (and with the phenomenological prediction of the GHK flux equation). The model is also consistent, approximately, with the tracer flux ratio results. PMID:1822560

  13. A microscopic view of ion conduction through the K+ channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernèche, Simon; Roux, Benoît

    2003-07-01

    Recent results from x-ray crystallography and molecular dynamics free-energy simulations have revealed the existence of a number of specific cation-binding sites disposed along the narrow pore of the K+ channel from Streptomyces lividans (KcsA), suggesting that K+ ions might literally "hop" in single file from one binding site to the next as permeation proceeds. In support of this view, it was found that the ion configurations correspond to energy wells of similar depth and that ion translocation is opposed only by small energy barriers. Although such features of the multiion potential energy surface are certainly essential for achieving a high throughput rate, diffusional and dissipative dynamical factors must also be taken into consideration to understand how rapid conduction of K+ is possible. To elucidate the mechanism of ion conduction, we established a framework theory enabling the direct simulation of nonequilibrium fluxes by extending the results of molecular dynamics over macroscopically long times. In good accord with experimental measurements, the simulated maximum conductance of the channel at saturating concentration is on the order of 550 and 360 pS for outward and inward ions flux, respectively, with a unidirectional flux-ratio exponent of 3. Analysis of the ion-conduction process reveals a lack of equivalence between the cation-binding sites in the selectivity filter. molecular dynamics | Brownian dynamics | potential of mean force | membrane potential | Poisson-Boltzmann equation

  14. Convergence of ion channel genome content in early animal evolution

    PubMed Central

    Liebeskind, Benjamin J.; Hillis, David M.; Zakon, Harold H.

    2015-01-01

    Multicellularity has evolved multiple times, but animals are the only multicellular lineage with nervous systems. This fact implies that the origin of nervous systems was an unlikely event, yet recent comparisons among extant taxa suggest that animal nervous systems may have evolved multiple times independently. Here, we use ancestral gene content reconstruction to track the timing of gene family expansions for the major families of ion-channel proteins that drive nervous system function. We find that animals with nervous systems have broadly similar complements of ion-channel types but that these complements likely evolved independently. We also find that ion-channel gene family evolution has included large loss events, two of which were immediately followed by rounds of duplication. Ctenophores, cnidarians, and bilaterians underwent independent bouts of gene expansion in channel families involved in synaptic transmission and action potential shaping. We suggest that expansions of these family types may represent a genomic signature of expanding nervous system complexity. Ancestral nodes in which nervous systems are currently hypothesized to have originated did not experience large expansions, making it difficult to distinguish among competing hypotheses of nervous system origins and suggesting that the origin of nerves was not attended by an immediate burst of complexity. Rather, the evolution of nervous system complexity appears to resemble a slow fuse in stem animals followed by many independent bouts of gene gain and loss. PMID:25675537

  15. Epithelial Sodium and Acid-Sensing Ion Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kellenberger, Stephan

    The epithelial Na+ channel (ENaC) and acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are non-voltage-gated Na+ channels that form their own subfamilies within the ENaC/degenerin ion channel family. ASICs are sensors of extracellular pH, and ENaC, whose main function is trans-epithelial Na+ transport, can sense extra- and intra-cellular Na+. In aldosterone-responsive epithelial cells of the kidney, ENaC plays a critical role in the control of sodium balance, blood volume and blood pressure. In airway epithelia, ENaC has a distinct role in controlling fluid reabsorption at the air-liquid interface, thereby determining the rate of mucociliary transport. In taste receptor cells of the tongue, ENaC is involved in salt taste sensation. ASICs have emerged as key sensors for extracellular protons in central and peripheral neurons. Although not all of their physiological and pathological functions are firmly established yet, there is good evidence for a role of ASICs in the brain in learning, expression of fear, and in neurodegeneration after ischaemic stroke. In sensory neurons, ASICs are involved in nociception and mechanosensation. ENaC and ASIC subunits share substantial sequence homology and the conservation of several functional domains. This chapter summarises our current understanding of the physiological functions and of the mechanisms of ion permeation, gating and regulation of ENaC and ASICs.

  16. Plasma channel and Z-pinch dynamics for heavy ion transport

    SciTech Connect

    Ponce-Marquez, David

    2002-07-09

    A self stabilized, free standing, z-pinch plasma channel has been proposed to deliver the high intensity heavy ion beam from the end of a driver to the fuel target in a heavy ion inertial fusion power plant. The z-pinch relaxes emittance and energy spread requirements requiring a lower cost driver. A z-pinch transport would reduce the number of beam entry port holes to the target chamber from over a hundred to four as compared to neutralized ballistic focusing thus reducing the driver hardware exposure to neutron flux. Experiments where a double pulse discharge technique is used, z-pinch plasma channels with enhanced stability are achieved. Typical parameters are 7 kV pre-pulse discharge and 30 kV main bank discharge with 50 kA of channel current in a 7 torr background gas atmosphere. This work is an experimental study of these plasma channels examining the relevant physics necessary to understand and model such plasmas. Laser diagnostics measured the dynamical properties of neutrals and plasma. Schlieren and phase contrast techniques probe the pre-pulse gas dynamics and infrared interferometry and faraday effect polarimetry are used on the z-pinch to study its electron density and current distribution. Stability and repeatability of the z-pinch depend on the initial conditions set by the pre-pulse. Results show that the z-pinch channel is wall stabilized by an on-axis gas density depression created by the pre-pulse through hydrodynamic expansion where the ratio of the initial gas density to the final gas density is > 10/1. The low on-axis density favors avalanching along the desired path for the main bank discharge. Pinch time is around 2 s from the main bank discharge initiation with a FWHM of {approx} 2 cm. Results also show that typical main bank discharge plasma densities reach 10{sup 17} cm{sup -3} peak on axis for a 30 kV, 7 torr gas nitrogen discharge. Current rise time is limited by the circuit-channel inductance with the highest contribution to the

  17. 50 years of ion channeling in materials science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vantomme, André

    2016-03-01

    In the early days of ion beam analysis, i.e. the early 60s, channeling was discovered and brought to maturity via a combined effort in experimental, computational and theoretical research. It was soon realized that the probability for nuclear interaction (such as nuclear scattering, nuclear reactions, ionization followed by X-ray emission…) would significantly decrease when steering the ion beam along a crystallographic direction of a single crystal. Hence, this effect would be optimally suited to investigate a wide range of materials properties related to their crystal structure, such as defects, elastic strain, the lattice site of impurities, as well as phonon-related properties. In this paper, I will briefly review some of the pioneering work, which led to the discovery and theoretical understanding of ion channeling. Subsequently, a number of applications will be discussed where the strength of the ion beam analysis technique allows deducing information which is often hardly (or not) attainable by other techniques. Throughout the paper, I will reflect on the future of channeling in materials research, and pay special attention to potential pitfalls, challenges and opportunities.

  18. Redox Regulation of Ion Channels in the Pulmonary Circulation

    PubMed Central

    Weir, Edward Kenneth

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Significance: The pulmonary circulation is a low-pressure, low-resistance, highly compliant vasculature. In contrast to the systemic circulation, it is not primarily regulated by a central nervous control mechanism. The regulation of resting membrane potential due to ion channels is of integral importance in the physiology and pathophysiology of the pulmonary vasculature. Recent Advances: Redox-driven ion conductance changes initiated by direct oxidation, nitration, and S-nitrosylation of the cysteine thiols and indirect phosphorylation of the threonine and serine residues directly affect pulmonary vascular tone. Critical Issues: Molecular mechanisms of changes in ion channel conductance, especially the identification of the sites of action, are still not fully elucidated. Future Directions: Further investigation of the interaction between redox status and ion channel gating, especially the physiological significance of S-glutathionylation and S-nitrosylation, could result in a better understanding of the physiological and pathophysiological importance of these mediators in general and the implications of such modifications in cellular functions and related diseases and their importance for targeted treatment strategies. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 22, 465–485. PMID:24702125

  19. Ion transport through a T-intersection of nanofluidic channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Daiguji, Hirofumi; Adachi, Takuma; Tatsumi, Naoya

    2008-08-01

    Ion transport through a T-intersection of two silica nanochannels (a main channel, 5-μm long and 30-nm wide, and a subchannel, 5-μm long and 15-nm wide) with a surface charge distribution was investigated based on continuum dynamics calculations. The surface charge within 250nm of the intersection in the main channel and the entire subchannel was positive and that in the main channel outside this intersection region was negative. This nanofluidic system is analogous to a p-n-p transistor. The calculation results revealed that, by adjusting the electric potentials at the ends of the nanochannels, the ionic current could be (1) cut off, (2) regulated in the main channel, (3) diverged into the main and subchannels, (4) turned from the main channel to the subchannel, and (5) merged into the subchannel. A series connection of this nanofluidic system can therefore be used in biotechnological applications for electrophoretic separation and for sorting of ions and biomolecules.

  20. From Toxins Targeting Ligand Gated Ion Channels to Therapeutic Molecules

    PubMed Central

    Nasiripourdori, Adak; Taly, Valérie; Grutter, Thomas; Taly, Antoine

    2011-01-01

    Ligand-gated ion channels (LGIC) play a central role in inter-cellular communication. This key function has two consequences: (i) these receptor channels are major targets for drug discovery because of their potential involvement in numerous human brain diseases; (ii) they are often found to be the target of plant and animal toxins. Together this makes toxin/receptor interactions important to drug discovery projects. Therefore, toxins acting on LGIC are presented and their current/potential therapeutic uses highlighted. PMID:22069709

  1. Stretch-Activated Ion Channels: What Are They?

    PubMed Central

    Sachs, Frederick

    2010-01-01

    Mechanosensitive ion channels (MSCs) exist in all cells, but mechanosensitivity is a phenotype not a genotype. Specialized mechanoreceptors such as the hair cells of the cochlea require elaborate mechanical impedance matching to couple the channels to the external stress. In contrast, MSCs in nonspecialized cells appear activated by stress in the bilayer local to the channel—within about three lipids. Local mechanical stress can be produced by far-field tension, amphipaths, phase separations, the cytoskeleton, the extracellular matrix, and the adhesion energy between the membrane and a patch pipette. Understanding MSC function requires understanding the stimulus. PMID:20134028

  2. Lipid bilayer array for simultaneous recording of ion channel activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hirano-Iwata, Ayumi; Nasu, Tomohiro; Oshima, Azusa; Kimura, Yasuo; Niwano, Michio

    2012-07-01

    This paper describes an array of stable and reduced-solvent bilayer lipid membranes (BLMs) formed in microfabricated silicon chips. BLMs were first vertically formed simultaneously and then turned 90° in order to realize a horizontal BLM array. Since the present BLMs are mechanically stable and robust, the BLMs survive this relatively tough process. Typically, a ˜60% yield in simultaneous BLM formation over 9 sites was obtained. Parallel recordings of gramicidin channel activities from different BLMs were demonstrated. The present system has great potential as a platform of BLM-based high throughput drug screening for ion channel proteins.

  3. Dengue virus M protein C-terminal peptide (DVM-C) forms ion channels.

    PubMed

    Premkumar, A; Horan, C R; Gage, P W

    2005-03-01

    A chemically synthesized peptide consisting of the C-terminus of the M protein of the Dengue virus type 1 strain Singapore S275/90 (DVM-C) produced ion channel activity in artificial lipid bilayers. The channels had a variable conductance and were more permeable to sodium and potassium ions than to chloride ions and more permeable to chloride ions than to calcium ions. Hexamethylene amiloride (100 microM) and amantadine (10 microM), blocked channels formed by DVM-C. Ion channels may play an important role in the life cycle of many viruses and drugs that block these channels may prove to be useful antiviral agents.

  4. Estimates of maximum trappable ion beam power in plasma channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watrous, J. J.; Olson, R. E.

    Conservation laws and solutions to the equations of motion for single particles have been used to obtained greatest lower bounds on the ion beam power that can be injected into and confined within plasma channels. These bounds are use in the evaluation of proposed light ion driven ICF experiments and reactor concepts. Simple estimates of trappable power based on conservation laws will be compared with estimates based on solutions to the equation of motion. Consequences of the results of these calculations to current design studies will be discussed.

  5. Binding of Capsaicin to the TRPV1 Ion Channel.

    PubMed

    Darré, Leonardo; Domene, Carmen

    2015-12-01

    Transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channels constitute a notable family of cation channels involved in the ability of an organisms to detect noxious mechanical, thermal, and chemical stimuli that give rise to the perception of pain, taste, and changes in temperature. One of the most experimentally studied agonist of TRP channels is capsaicin, which is responsible for the burning sensation produced when chili pepper is in contact with organic tissues. Thus, understanding how this molecule interacts and regulates TRP channels is essential to high impact pharmacological applications, particularly those related to pain treatment. The recent publication of a three-dimensional structure of the vanilloid receptor 1 (TRPV1) in the absence and presence of capsaicin from single particle electron cryomicroscopy experiments provides the opportunity to explore these questions at the atomic level. In the present work, molecular docking and unbiased and biased molecular dynamics simulations were employed to generate a structural model of the capsaicin-channel complex. In addition, the standard free energy of binding was estimated using alchemical transformations coupled with conformational, translational, and orientational restraints on the ligand. Key binding modes consistent with previous experimental data are identified, and subtle but essential dynamical features of the binding site are characterized. These observations shed some light into how TRPV1 interacts with capsaicin, and may help to refine design parameters for new TRPV1 antagonists, and potentially guide further developments of TRP channel modulators. PMID:26502196

  6. Binding of Capsaicin to the TRPV1 Ion Channel.

    PubMed

    Darré, Leonardo; Domene, Carmen

    2015-12-01

    Transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channels constitute a notable family of cation channels involved in the ability of an organisms to detect noxious mechanical, thermal, and chemical stimuli that give rise to the perception of pain, taste, and changes in temperature. One of the most experimentally studied agonist of TRP channels is capsaicin, which is responsible for the burning sensation produced when chili pepper is in contact with organic tissues. Thus, understanding how this molecule interacts and regulates TRP channels is essential to high impact pharmacological applications, particularly those related to pain treatment. The recent publication of a three-dimensional structure of the vanilloid receptor 1 (TRPV1) in the absence and presence of capsaicin from single particle electron cryomicroscopy experiments provides the opportunity to explore these questions at the atomic level. In the present work, molecular docking and unbiased and biased molecular dynamics simulations were employed to generate a structural model of the capsaicin-channel complex. In addition, the standard free energy of binding was estimated using alchemical transformations coupled with conformational, translational, and orientational restraints on the ligand. Key binding modes consistent with previous experimental data are identified, and subtle but essential dynamical features of the binding site are characterized. These observations shed some light into how TRPV1 interacts with capsaicin, and may help to refine design parameters for new TRPV1 antagonists, and potentially guide further developments of TRP channel modulators.

  7. The screw-helical voltage gating of ion channels.

    PubMed Central

    Keynes, R D; Elinder, F

    1999-01-01

    In the voltage-gated ion channels of every animal, whether they are selective for K+, Na+ or Ca2+, the voltage sensors are the S4 transmembrane segments carrying four to eight positive charges always separated by two uncharged residues. It is proposed that they move across the membrane in a screw-helical fashion in a series of three or more steps that each transfer a single electronic charge. The unit steps are stabilized by ion pairing between the mobile positive charges and fixed negative charges, of which there are invariably two located near the inner ends of segments S2 and S3 and a third near the outer end of either S2 or S3. Opening of the channel involves three such steps in each domain. PMID:10343407

  8. Crystal structure of a heterotetrameric NMDA receptor ion channel.

    PubMed

    Karakas, Erkan; Furukawa, Hiro

    2014-05-30

    N-Methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors belong to the family of ionotropic glutamate receptors, which mediate most excitatory synaptic transmission in mammalian brains. Calcium permeation triggered by activation of NMDA receptors is the pivotal event for initiation of neuronal plasticity. Here, we show the crystal structure of the intact heterotetrameric GluN1-GluN2B NMDA receptor ion channel at 4 angstroms. The NMDA receptors are arranged as a dimer of GluN1-GluN2B heterodimers with the twofold symmetry axis running through the entire molecule composed of an amino terminal domain (ATD), a ligand-binding domain (LBD), and a transmembrane domain (TMD). The ATD and LBD are much more highly packed in the NMDA receptors than non-NMDA receptors, which may explain why ATD regulates ion channel activity in NMDA receptors but not in non-NMDA receptors.

  9. Biomimetic Nanotubes Based on Cyclodextrins for Ion-Channel Applications.

    PubMed

    Mamad-Hemouch, Hajar; Ramoul, Hassen; Abou Taha, Mohammad; Bacri, Laurent; Huin, Cécile; Przybylski, Cédric; Oukhaled, Abdelghani; Thiébot, Bénédicte; Patriarche, Gilles; Jarroux, Nathalie; Pelta, Juan

    2015-11-11

    Biomimetic membrane channels offer a great potential for fundamental studies and applications. Here, we report the fabrication and characterization of short cyclodextrin nanotubes, their insertion into membranes, and cytotoxicity assay. Mass spectrometry and high-resolution transmission electron microscopy were used to confirm the synthesis pathway leading to the formation of short nanotubes and to describe their structural parameters in terms of length, diameter, and number of cyclodextrins. Our results show the control of the number of cyclodextrins threaded on the polyrotaxane leading to nanotube synthesis. Structural parameters obtained by electron microscopy are consistent with the distribution of the number of cyclodextrins evaluated by mass spectrometry from the initial polymer distribution. An electrophysiological study at single molecule level demonstrates the ion channel formation into lipid bilayers, and the energy penalty for the entry of ions into the confined nanotube. In the presence of nanotubes, the cell physiology is not altered.

  10. Ion channels and drug transporters as targets for anthelmintics

    PubMed Central

    Greenberg, Robert M.

    2014-01-01

    Infections with parasitic helminths such as schistosomes and soil-transmitted nematodes are hugely prevalent and responsible for a major portion of the global health and economic burdens associated with neglected tropical diseases. In addition, many of these parasites infect livestock and plants used in agriculture, resulting in further impoverishment. Treatment and control of these pathogens rely on anthelmintic drugs, which are few in number, and against which drug resistance can develop rapidly. The neuromuscular system of the parasite, and in particular, the ion channels and associated receptors underlying excitation and signaling, have proven to be outstanding targets for anthelmintics. This review will survey the different ion channels found in helminths, focusing on their unique characteristics and pharmacological sensitivities. It will also briefly review the literature on helminth multidrug efflux that may modulate parasite susceptibility to anthelmintics and may prove useful targets for new or repurposed agents that can enhance parasite drug susceptibility and perhaps overcome drug resistance. PMID:25554739

  11. Microstructured apertures in planar glass substrates for ion channel research.

    PubMed

    Fertig, Niels; George, Michael; Klau, Michèle; Meyer, Christine; Tilke, Armin; Sobotta, Constanze; Blick, Robert H; Behrends, Jan C

    2003-01-01

    We have developed planar glass chip devices for patch clamp recording. Glass has several key advantages as a substrate for planar patch clamp devices. It is a good dielectric, is well-known to interact strongly with cell membranes and is also a relatively in-expensive material. In addition, it is optically neutral. However, microstructuring processes for glass are less well established than those for silicon-based substrates. We have used ion-track etching techniques to produce micron-sized apertures into borosilicate and quartz-glass coverslips. These apertures, which can be easily produced in arrays, have been used for high resolution recording of single ion channels as well as for whole-cell current recordings from mammalian cell lines. An additional attractive application that is greatly facilitated by the combination of planar geometry with the optical neutrality of the substrate is single-molecule fluorescence recording with simultaneous single-channel measurements. PMID:12825296

  12. Automatable lipid bilayer formation for ion channel studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poulos, Jason L.; Bang, Hyunwoo; Jeon, Tae-Joon; Schmidt, Jacob J.

    2008-08-01

    Transmembrane proteins and ion channels are important drug targets and have been explored as single molecule sensors. For these proteins to function normally they must be integrated within lipid bilayers; however, the labor and skill required to create artificial lipid bilayers have the limited the possible applications utilizing these proteins. In order to reduce the complexity and cost of lipid bilayer formation and measurement, we have modified a previously published lipid bilayer formation technique using mechanically contacted monolayers so that the process is automatable, requiring minimal operator input. Measurement electronics are integrated with the fluid handling system, greatly reducing the time and operator feedback characteristically required of traditional bilayer experiments. To demonstrate the biological functionality of the resultant bilayers and the system's capabilities as a membrane platform, the ion channel gramicidin A was incorporated and measured with this system.

  13. LGICdb: the ligand-gated ion channel database.

    PubMed

    Le Novère, N; Changeux, J P

    2001-01-01

    Ligand-Gated Ion Channels (LGIC) are polymeric transmembrane proteins involved in the fast response to numerous neurotransmitters. All these receptors are formed by homologous subunits and the last two decades revealed an unexpected wealth of genes coding for these subunits. The Ligand-Gated Ion Channel database (LGICdb) has been developed to handle this increasing amount of data. The database aims to provide only one entry for each gene, containing annotated nucleic acid and protein sequences. The repository is carefully structured and the entries can be retrieved by various criteria. In addition to the sequences, the LGICdb provides multiple sequence alignments, phylogenetic analyses and atomic coordinates when available. The database is accessible via the World Wide Web (http://www.pasteur.fr/recherche/banques/LGIC /LGIC.html), where it is continuously updated. The version 16 (September 2000) available for download contained 333 entries covering 34 species.

  14. Enhancement of laser-driven electron acceleration in an ion channel

    SciTech Connect

    Arefiev, Alexey V.; Khudik, Vladimir N.; Schollmeier, Marius

    2014-03-15

    A laser beam with duration longer than the period of plasma oscillations propagating through an underdense plasma produces a steady-state positively charged channel in the electron density. We consider a test electron in the two-dimensional plane channel under the combined action of the laser field and the transverse static electric field of the channel. At ultrarelativistic laser wave amplitude (a≫1), the electron is pushed primarily forward. As the electron gradually dephases from the wave, the field it samples and its relativistic γ-factor strongly oscillate. The natural frequency of electron oscillations across the channel (betatron frequency) depends on γ, which couples the betatron oscillations to the longitudinal motion induced by the wave. We show that the modulation of the natural frequency makes the oscillations unstable. The resulting amplification of the oscillations across the channel reduces the axial dephasing between the electron and the wave, leading to a considerable electron energy enhancement well above the ponderomotive energy. We find that there is a well-pronounced laser amplitude threshold a{sub *}, above which the enhancement takes place, that scales as a{sub *}∝1/√(n{sub 0}), where n{sub 0} is the ion density. The presented mechanism of energy enhancement is robust with respect to a longitudinal variation of the density, because it relies on a threshold phenomenon rather than on a narrow linear resonance.

  15. Amino acid-sensing ion channels in plants

    SciTech Connect

    Spalding, Edgar P.

    2014-08-12

    The title of our project is “Amino acid-sensing ion channels in plants”. Its goals are two-fold: to determine the molecular functions of glutamate receptor-like (GLR) proteins, and to elucidate their biological roles (physiological or developmental) in plants. Here is our final technical report. We were highly successful in two of the three aims, modestly successful in the third.

  16. Patch-Clamp Technologies for Ion Channel Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sigworth, Fred J.; Klemic, Kathryn G.

    The electrical activity of living cells can be monitored in various ways, but for the study of ion channels and the drugs that affect them, the patch-clamp techniques are the most sensitive. In this chapter the principles of patch-clamp recording are reviewed, and recent developments in microfabricated patch-clamp electrodes are described.Technical challenges and prospects for the future are discussed.

  17. Genistein as antiviral drug against HIV ion channel.

    PubMed

    Sauter, Daniel; Schwarz, Silvia; Wang, Kai; Zhang, Ronghua; Sun, Bing; Schwarz, Wolfgang

    2014-06-01

    Various drugs found in Chinese herbs are well known for their antiviral potency. We have tested several flavonoids with respect to their potency to block the viral protein U of the human immunodeficiency type 1 virus, which is believed to form a cation-permeable ion channel in the infected cell. We used Xenopus oocytes with heterologously expressed viral protein U as model system to test the efficacy of the drugs in voltage-clamp experiments. This method had been demonstrated in the past as a useful tool to screen drugs for their potency in inhibition of ion channel activity. The viral protein U-mediated current could be inhibited by Ba(2+) with a K1/2 value of 1.6 mM. Therefore, we determined viral protein U-mediated current as current component blocked by 10 mM Ba(2+). We screened several flavonoids with respect to their effects on this current. The flavonols quercetin and kaempferol, and the flavanols (-)epigallochatechin and (-)epichatechin were ineffective. The flavanone naringenin showed at 20 µM slight (about 10%) inhibition. The most potent drug was the isoflavon genistein which exhibited at 20 µM significant inhibition of about 40% with a K1/2 value of 81 ± 4 µM. We suggest that viral ion channels, in general, may be a good target for development of antiviral agents, and that, in particular, isoflavons may be candidates for development of drugs targeting viral protein U.

  18. Ion Channel Voltage Sensors: Structure, Function, and Pathophysiology

    PubMed Central

    Catterall, William A.

    2010-01-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels generate electrical signals in species from bacteria to man. Their voltage-sensing modules are responsible for initiation of action potentials and graded membrane potential changes in response to synaptic input and other physiological stimuli. Extensive structure-function studies, structure determination, and molecular modeling are now converging on a sliding-helix mechanism for electromechanical coupling in which outward movement of gating charges in the S4 transmembrane segments catalyzed by sequential formation of ion pairs pulls the S4-S5 linker, bends the S6 segment, and opens the pore. Impairment of voltage-sensor function by mutations in Na+ channels contributes to several ion channelopathies, and gating pore current conducted by mutant voltage sensors in NaV1.4 channels is the primary pathophysiological mechanism in Hypokalemic Periodic Paralysis. The emerging structural model for voltage sensor function opens the way to development of a new generation of ionchannel drugs that act on voltage sensors rather than blocking the pore. PMID:20869590

  19. Automated ion channel screening: patch clamping made easy.

    PubMed

    Farre, Cecilia; Stoelzle, Sonja; Haarmann, Claudia; George, Michael; Brüggemann, Andrea; Fertig, Niels

    2007-04-01

    Efficient high resolution techniques are required for screening efforts and research targeting ion channels. The conventional patch clamp technique, a high resolution but low efficiency technique, has been established for 25 years. Recent advances have opened up new possibilities for automated patch clamping. This new technology meets the need of drug developers for higher throughput and facilitates new experimental approaches in ion channel research. Specifically, Nanion's electrophysiology workstations, the Port-a-Patch and the Patchliner, have been successfully introduced as high-quality automated patch clamp platforms for industry as well as academic users. Both platforms give high quality patch clamp recordings, capable of true giga-seals and stable recordings, accessible to the user without the need for years of practical training. They also offer sophisticated experimental possibilities, such as accurate and fast ligand application, temperature control and internal solution exchange. This article describes the chip-based patch clamp technology and its usefulness in ion channel drug screening and academic research.

  20. Regulation of lysosomal ion homeostasis by channels and transporters.

    PubMed

    Xiong, Jian; Zhu, Michael X

    2016-08-01

    Lysosomes are the major organelles that carry out degradation functions. They integrate and digest materials compartmentalized by endocytosis, phagocytosis or autophagy. In addition to more than 60 hydrolases residing in the lysosomes, there are also ion channels and transporters that mediate the flux or transport of H(+), Ca(2+), Na(+), K(+), and Cl(-) across the lysosomal membranes. Defects in ionic exchange can lead to abnormal lysosome morphology, defective vesicle trafficking, impaired autophagy, and diseases such as neurodegeneration and lysosomal storage disorders. The latter are characterized by incomplete lysosomal digestion and accumulation of toxic materials inside enlarged intracellular vacuoles. In addition to degradation, recent studies have revealed the roles of lysosomes in metabolic pathways through kinases such as mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) and transcriptional regulation through calcium signaling molecules such as transcription factor EB (TFEB) and calcineurin. Owing to the development of new approaches including genetically encoded fluorescence probes and whole endolysosomal patch clamp recording techniques, studies on lysosomal ion channels have made remarkable progress in recent years. In this review, we will focus on the current knowledge of lysosome-resident ion channels and transporters, discuss their roles in maintaining lysosomal function, and evaluate how their dysfunction can result in disease. PMID:27430889

  1. Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi theory for modeling biological ion channels.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinn-Liang; Eisenberg, Bob

    2014-12-14

    A Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi (PNPF) theory is developed for studying ionic transport through biological ion channels. Our goal is to deal with the finite size of particle using a Fermi like distribution without calculating the forces between the particles, because they are both expensive and tricky to compute. We include the steric effect of ions and water molecules with nonuniform sizes and interstitial voids, the correlation effect of crowded ions with different valences, and the screening effect of water molecules in an inhomogeneous aqueous electrolyte. Including the finite volume of water and the voids between particles is an important new part of the theory presented here. Fermi like distributions of all particle species are derived from the volume exclusion of classical particles. Volume exclusion and the resulting saturation phenomena are especially important to describe the binding and permeation mechanisms of ions in a narrow channel pore. The Gibbs free energy of the Fermi distribution reduces to that of a Boltzmann distribution when these effects are not considered. The classical Gibbs entropy is extended to a new entropy form - called Gibbs-Fermi entropy - that describes mixing configurations of all finite size particles and voids in a thermodynamic system where microstates do not have equal probabilities. The PNPF model describes the dynamic flow of ions, water molecules, as well as voids with electric fields and protein charges. The model also provides a quantitative mean-field description of the charge/space competition mechanism of particles within the highly charged and crowded channel pore. The PNPF results are in good accord with experimental currents recorded in a 10(8)-fold range of Ca(2+) concentrations. The results illustrate the anomalous mole fraction effect, a signature of L-type calcium channels. Moreover, numerical results concerning water density, dielectric permittivity, void volume, and steric energy provide useful details to study

  2. Peptidomimetic Star Polymers for Targeting Biological Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Rong; Lu, Derong; Xie, Zili; Feng, Jing; Jia, Zhongfan; Ho, Junming; Coote, Michelle L.; Wu, Yingliang; Monteiro, Michael J.; Chung, Shin-Ho

    2016-01-01

    Four end-functionalized star polymers that could attenuate the flow of ionic currents across biological ion channels were first de novo designed computationally, then synthesized and tested experimentally on mammalian K+ channels. The 4-arm ethylene glycol conjugate star polymers with lysine or a tripeptide attached to the end of each arm were specifically designed to mimic the action of scorpion toxins on K+ channels. Molecular dynamics simulations showed that the lysine side chain of the polymers physically occludes the pore of Kv1.3, a target for immuno-suppression therapy. Two of the compounds tested were potent inhibitors of Kv1.3. The dissociation constants of these two compounds were computed to be 0.1 μM and 0.7 μM, respectively, within 3-fold to the values derived from subsequent experiments. These results demonstrate the power of computational methods in molecular design and the potential of star polymers as a new infinitely modifiable platform for ion channel drug discovery. PMID:27007701

  3. Peptidomimetic Star Polymers for Targeting Biological Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Chen, Rong; Lu, Derong; Xie, Zili; Feng, Jing; Jia, Zhongfan; Ho, Junming; Coote, Michelle L; Wu, Yingliang; Monteiro, Michael J; Chung, Shin-Ho

    2016-01-01

    Four end-functionalized star polymers that could attenuate the flow of ionic currents across biological ion channels were first de novo designed computationally, then synthesized and tested experimentally on mammalian K+ channels. The 4-arm ethylene glycol conjugate star polymers with lysine or a tripeptide attached to the end of each arm were specifically designed to mimic the action of scorpion toxins on K+ channels. Molecular dynamics simulations showed that the lysine side chain of the polymers physically occludes the pore of Kv1.3, a target for immuno-suppression therapy. Two of the compounds tested were potent inhibitors of Kv1.3. The dissociation constants of these two compounds were computed to be 0.1 μM and 0.7 μM, respectively, within 3-fold to the values derived from subsequent experiments. These results demonstrate the power of computational methods in molecular design and the potential of star polymers as a new infinitely modifiable platform for ion channel drug discovery.

  4. The Concise Guide to Pharmacology 2013/14: Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, Stephen PH; Benson, Helen E; Faccenda, Elena; Pawson, Adam J; Sharman, Joanna L; Catterall, William A; Spedding, Michael; Peters, John A; Harmar, Anthony J

    2013-01-01

    The Concise Guide to PHARMACOLOGY 2013/14 provides concise overviews of the key properties of over 2000 human drug targets with their pharmacology, plus links to an open access knowledgebase of drug targets and their ligands (www.guidetopharmacology.org), which provides more detailed views of target and ligand properties. The full contents can be found at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bph.12444/full. Ion channels are one of the seven major pharmacological targets into which the Guide is divided, with the others being G protein-coupled receptors, ligand-gated ion channels, catalytic receptors, nuclear hormone receptors, transporters and enzymes. These are presented with nomenclature guidance and summary information on the best available pharmacological tools, alongside key references and suggestions for further reading. A new landscape format has easy to use tables comparing related targets. It is a condensed version of material contemporary to late 2013, which is presented in greater detail and constantly updated on the website www.guidetopharmacology.org, superseding data presented in previous Guides to Receptors and Channels. It is produced in conjunction with NC-IUPHAR and provides the official IUPHAR classification and nomenclature for human drug targets, where appropriate. It consolidates information previously curated and displayed separately in IUPHAR-DB and the Guide to Receptors and Channels, providing a permanent, citable, point-in-time record that will survive database updates. PMID:24528239

  5. Energetics of double-ion occupancy in the gramicidin A channel.

    PubMed

    Li, Yuhui; Andersen, Olaf S; Roux, Benoît

    2010-11-01

    To understand the energetics of double-ion occupancy in gramicidin A (gA) channels, the 2D potential of mean force (PMF) is calculated for two ions at different positions along the channel axis. The cross sections of this 2D PMF are compared with available one-ion PMFs to highlight the effect of one ion on the permeation dynamics of the other. It is found that, if the first ion stays on one side in the channel, the second ion has to pass over an additional barrier to move into the outer binding site. At the same time, both outer and inner binding sites for the second ion become shallower than those in the one-ion PMF. The calculated ion-ion repulsion for a doubly occupied channel is about 2 kcal/mol, in good agreement with previous experimental estimates. The number of water molecules inside the channel and their dipole moment are calculated to interpret the energetics of double-ion occupancy. As the first ion moves into the outer binding site and then further into the channel, the oxygen atoms of the single-file water column in the channel are oriented to point toward the ion. The observed dipole moment distribution of a singly occupied channel has only one sharp peak, and the water alignment is essentially perfect once the ion is in the inner binding site. For this reason, there is an energy penalty to accommodate a second ion at the opposite end of the channel.

  6. Energy dependence of island nucleation density during ion beam deposition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomeroy, Joshua M.; Brock, Joel D.

    2002-03-01

    Thin copper films were grown on single crystal copper substrates using highly collimated copper ion beams with precisely controlled incidence energies. The energetic collisions between the copper ions and the surface can form adatom-vacancy pairs or sputter eject atoms into the vaccuum. Island nucleation densities are affected by these atomistic mechanisms, which increase surface adatom densities and surface defect densities. This paper reports STM measurements of the island nucleation density for films grown both thermally and at energies between 10-150 eV. The measured island nucleation density systematically deviates with increasing energy from the density predicted by mean field nucleation theory (J.A. Venables, et.al., Rep. Prog. Phys. 47 (1984) p. 399-459). This deviation can be understood using a phenomenological extension of mean field nucleation theory that includes the effects of adatom-vacancy pair production and sputter ejection on the effective flux.

  7. Modeling Neutral Densities Downstream of a Gridded Ion Thruster

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Soulas, George C.

    2010-01-01

    The details of a model for determining the neutral density downstream of a gridded ion thruster are presented. An investigation of the possible sources of neutrals emanating from and surrounding a NEXT ion thruster determined that the most significant contributors to the downstream neutral density include discharge chamber neutrals escaping through the perforated grids, neutrals escaping from the neutralizer, and vacuum facility background neutrals. For the neutral flux through the grids, near- and far-field equations are presented for rigorously determining the neutral density downstream of a cylindrical aperture. These equations are integrated into a spherically-domed convex grid geometry with a hexagonal array of apertures for determining neutral densities downstream of the ion thruster grids. The neutrals escaping from an off-center neutralizer are also modeled assuming diffuse neutral emission from the neutralizer keeper orifice. Finally, the effect of the surrounding vacuum facility neutrals is included and assumed to be constant. The model is used to predict the neutral density downstream of a NEXT ion thruster with and without neutralizer flow and a vacuum facility background pressure. The impacts of past simplifying assumptions for predicting downstream neutral densities are also examined for a NEXT ion thruster.

  8. Ion permeation of AQP6 water channel protein. Single channel recordings after Hg2+ activation.

    PubMed

    Hazama, Akihiro; Kozono, David; Guggino, William B; Agre, Peter; Yasui, Masato

    2002-08-01

    Aquaporin-6 (AQP6) has recently been identified as an intracellular vesicle water channel with anion permeability that is activated by low pH or HgCl2. Here we present direct evidence of AQP6 channel gating using patch clamp techniques. Cell-attached patch recordings of AQP6 expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes indicated that AQP6 is a gated channel with intermediate conductance (49 picosiemens in 100 mm NaCl) induced by 10 microm HgCl2. Current-voltage relationships were linear, and open probability was fairly constant at any given voltage, indicating that Hg2+-induced AQP6 conductance is voltage-independent. The excised outside-out patch recording revealed rapid activation of AQP6 channels immediately after application of 10 microm HgCl2. Reduction of both Na+ and Cl- concentrations from 100 to 30 mm did not shift the reversal potential of the Hg2+-induced AQP6 current, suggesting that Na+ is as permeable as Cl-. The Na+ permeability of Hg2+-induced AQP6 current was further demonstrated by 22Na+ influx measurements. Site-directed mutagenesis identified Cys-155 and Cys-190 residues as the sites of Hg2+ activation both for water permeability and ion conductance. The Hill coefficient from the concentration-response curve for Hg2+-induced conductance was 1.1 +/- 0.3. These data provide the first evidence of AQP6 channel gating at a single-channel level and suggest that each monomer contains the pore region for ions based on the number of Hg2+-binding sites and the kinetics of Hg2+-activation of the channel. PMID:12034750

  9. Ion channels in the central regulation of energy and glucose homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Sohn, Jong-Woo

    2013-01-01

    Ion channels are critical regulators of neuronal excitability and synaptic function in the brain. Recent evidence suggests that ion channels expressed by neurons within the brain are responsible for regulating energy and glucose homeostasis. In addition, the central effects of neurotransmitters and hormones are at least in part achieved by modifications of ion channel activity. This review focuses on ion channels and their neuronal functions followed by a discussion of the identified roles for specific ion channels in the central pathways regulating food intake, energy expenditure, and glucose balance. PMID:23734095

  10. Zinc as Allosteric Ion Channel Modulator: Ionotropic Receptors as Metalloproteins.

    PubMed

    Peralta, Francisco Andrés; Huidobro-Toro, Juan Pablo

    2016-01-01

    Zinc is an essential metal to life. This transition metal is a structural component of many proteins and is actively involved in the catalytic activity of cell enzymes. In either case, these zinc-containing proteins are metalloproteins. However, the amino acid residues that serve as ligands for metal coordination are not necessarily the same in structural proteins compared to enzymes. While crystals of structural proteins that bind zinc reveal a higher preference for cysteine sulfhydryls rather than histidine imidazole rings, catalytic enzymes reveal the opposite, i.e., a greater preference for the histidines over cysteines for catalysis, plus the influence of carboxylic acids. Based on this paradigm, we reviewed the putative ligands of zinc in ionotropic receptors, where zinc has been described as an allosteric modulator of channel receptors. Although these receptors do not strictly qualify as metalloproteins since they do not normally bind zinc in structural domains, they do transitorily bind zinc at allosteric sites, modifying transiently the receptor channel's ion permeability. The present contribution summarizes current information showing that zinc allosteric modulation of receptor channels occurs by the preferential metal coordination to imidazole rings as well as to the sulfhydryl groups of cysteine in addition to the carboxyl group of acid residues, as with enzymes and catalysis. It is remarkable that most channels, either voltage-sensitive or transmitter-gated receptor channels, are susceptible to zinc modulation either as positive or negative regulators. PMID:27384555

  11. The Thumb Domain Mediates Acid-sensing Ion Channel Desensitization.

    PubMed

    Krauson, Aram J; Carattino, Marcelo D

    2016-05-20

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are cation-selective proton-gated channels expressed in neurons that participate in diverse physiological processes, including nociception, synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. ASIC subunits contain intracellular N and C termini, two transmembrane domains that constitute the pore, and a large extracellular loop with defined domains termed the finger, β-ball, thumb, palm, and knuckle. Here we examined the contribution of the finger, β-ball, and thumb domains to activation and desensitization through the analysis of chimeras and the assessment of the effect of covalent modification of introduced Cys at the domain-domain interfaces. Our studies with ASIC1a-ASIC2a chimeras showed that swapping the thumb domain between subunits results in faster channel desensitization. Likewise, the covalent modification of Cys residues at selected positions in the β-ball-thumb interface accelerates the desensitization of the mutant channels. Studies of accessibility with thiol-reactive reagents revealed that the β-ball and thumb domains reside apart in the resting state but that they become closer to each other in response to extracellular acidification. We propose that the thumb domain moves upon continuous exposure to an acidic extracellular milieu, assisting with the closing of the pore during channel desensitization. PMID:27015804

  12. Molecular dynamics simulations of water within models of ion channels.

    PubMed Central

    Breed, J; Sankararamakrishnan, R; Kerr, I D; Sansom, M S

    1996-01-01

    The transbilayer pores formed by ion channel proteins contain extended columns of water molecules. The dynamic properties of such waters have been suggested to differ from those of water in its bulk state. Molecular dynamics simulations of ion channel models solvated within and at the mouths of their pores are used to investigate the dynamics and structure of intra-pore water. Three classes of channel model are investigated: a) parallel bundles of hydrophobic (Ala20) alpha-helices; b) eight-stranded hydrophobic (Ala10) antiparallel beta-barrels; and c) parallel bundles of amphipathic alpha-helices (namely, delta-toxin, alamethicin, and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor M2 helix). The self-diffusion coefficients of water molecules within the pores are reduced significantly relative to bulk water in all of the models. Water rotational reorientation rates are also reduced within the pores, particularly in those pores formed by alpha-helix bundles. In the narrowest pore (that of the Ala20 pentameric helix bundle) self-diffusion coefficients and reorientation rates of intra-pore waters are reduced by approximately an order of magnitude relative to bulk solvent. In Ala20 helix bundles the water dipoles orient antiparallel to the helix dipoles. Such dipole/dipole interaction between water and pore may explain how water-filled ion channels may be formed by hydrophobic helices. In the bundles of amphipathic helices the orientation of water dipoles is modulated by the presence of charged side chains. No preferential orientation of water dipoles relative to the pore axis is observed in the hydrophobic beta-barrel models. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 5 FIGURE 7 PMID:8785323

  13. Structural basis for ion permeation mechanism in pentameric ligand-gated ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Sauguet, Ludovic; Poitevin, Frédéric; Murail, Samuel; Van Renterghem, Catherine; Moraga-Cid, Gustavo; Malherbe, Laurie; Thompson, Andrew W; Koehl, Patrice; Corringer, Pierre-Jean; Baaden, Marc; Delarue, Marc

    2013-01-01

    To understand the molecular mechanism of ion permeation in pentameric ligand-gated ion channels (pLGIC), we solved the structure of an open form of GLIC, a prokaryotic pLGIC, at 2.4 Å. Anomalous diffraction data were used to place bound anions and cations. This reveals ordered water molecules at the level of two rings of hydroxylated residues (named Ser6′ and Thr2′) that contribute to the ion selectivity filter. Two water pentagons are observed, a self-stabilized ice-like water pentagon and a second wider water pentagon, with one sodium ion between them. Single-channel electrophysiology shows that the side-chain hydroxyl of Ser6′ is crucial for ion translocation. Simulations and electrostatics calculations complemented the description of hydration in the pore and suggest that the water pentagons observed in the crystal are important for the ion to cross hydrophobic constriction barriers. Simulations that pull a cation through the pore reveal that residue Ser6′ actively contributes to ion translocation by reorienting its side chain when the ion is going through the pore. Generalization of these findings to the pLGIC family is proposed. PMID:23403925

  14. Computer Simulation Studies of Ion Channels at High Temperatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Hyun Deok

    The gramicidin channel is the smallest known biological ion channel, and it exhibits cation selectivity. Recently, Dr. John Cuppoletti's group at the University of Cincinnati showed that the gramicidin channel can function at high temperatures (360 ˜ 380K) with significant currents. This finding may have significant implications for fuel cell technology. In this thesis, we have examined the gramicidin channel at 300K, 330K, and 360K by computer simulation. We have investigated how the temperature affects the current and differences in magnitude of free energy between the two gramicidin forms, the helical dimer (HD) and the double helix (DH). A slight decrease of the free energy barrier inside the gramicidin channel and increased diffusion at high temperatures result in an increase of current. An applied external field of 0.2V/nm along the membrane normal results in directly observable ion transport across the channels at high temperatures for both HD and DH forms. We found that higher temperatures also affect the probability distribution of hydrogen bonds, the bending angle, the distance between dimers, and the size of the pore radius for the helical dimer structure. These findings may be related to the gating of the gramicidin channel. Methanococcus jannaschii (MJ) is a methane-producing thermophile, which was discovered at a depth of 2600m in a Pacific Ocean vent in 1983. It has the ability to thrive at high temperatures and high pressures, which are unfavorable for most life forms. There have been some experiments to study its stability under extreme conditions, but still the origin of the stability of MJ is not exactly known. MJ0305 is the chloride channel protein from the thermophile MJ. After generating a structure of MJ0305 by homology modeling based on the Ecoli ClC templates, we examined the thermal stability, and the network stability from the change of network entropy calculated from the adjacency matrices of the protein. High temperatures increase the

  15. Developmental Profile of Ion Channel Specializations in the Avian Nucleus Magnocellularis

    PubMed Central

    Hong, Hui; Rollman, Lisia; Feinstein, Brooke; Sanchez, Jason Tait

    2016-01-01

    Ultrafast and temporally precise action potentials (APs) are biophysical specializations of auditory brainstem neurons; properties necessary for encoding sound localization and communication cues. Fundamental to these specializations are voltage dependent potassium (KV) and sodium (NaV) ion channels. Here, we characterized the functional development of these ion channels and quantified how they shape AP properties in the avian cochlear nucleus magnocellularis (NM). We report that late developing NM neurons (embryonic [E] days 19–21) generate fast APs that reliably phase lock to sinusoidal inputs at 75 Hz. In contrast, early developing neurons (channels were blocked, APs for all ages became significantly slower. This was most evident for early developing neurons where the ratio of K+HVA current accounted for ~85% of the total KV response. This ratio dropped to ~50% for late developing neurons, suggesting a developmental upregulation of low-voltage activated potassium (K+LVA) channels. Indeed, blockade of K+LVA eliminated remaining current and increased neural excitability for late developing neurons. We also report developmental changes in the amplitude, kinetics and voltage dependence of NaV currents. For early developing neurons, increase in NaV current amplitude was due to channel density while channel conductance dominated for late developing neurons. From E10 to E21, NaV channel currents became faster but differed in their voltage dependence; early developing neurons (channel inactivation voltages while late developing NM neurons (>E19) contained NaV channels that inactivate at more

  16. Acid-sensing ion channels: trafficking and synaptic function

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Extracellular acidification occurs in the brain with elevated neural activity, increased metabolism, and neuronal injury. This reduction in pH can have profound effects on brain function because pH regulates essentially every single biochemical reaction. Therefore, it is not surprising to see that Nature evolves a family of proteins, the acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), to sense extracellular pH reduction. ASICs are proton-gated cation channels that are mainly expressed in the nervous system. In recent years, a growing body of literature has shown that acidosis, through activating ASICs, contributes to multiple diseases, including ischemia, multiple sclerosis, and seizures. In addition, ASICs play a key role in fear and anxiety related psychiatric disorders. Several recent reviews have summarized the importance and therapeutic potential of ASICs in neurological diseases, as well as the structure-function relationship of ASICs. However, there is little focused coverage on either the basic biology of ASICs or their contribution to neural plasticity. This review will center on these topics, with an emphasis on the synaptic role of ASICs and molecular mechanisms regulating the spatial distribution and function of these ion channels. PMID:23281934

  17. Ion Channels in the Eye: Involvement in Ocular Pathologies.

    PubMed

    Giblin, Jonathan P; Comes, Nuria; Strauss, Olaf; Gasull, Xavier

    2016-01-01

    The eye is the sensory organ of vision. There, the retina transforms photons into electrical signals that are sent to higher brain areas to produce visual sensations. In the light path to the retina, different types of cells and tissues are involved in maintaining the transparency of avascular structures like the cornea or lens, while others, like the retinal pigment epithelium, have a critical role in the maintenance of photoreceptor function by regenerating the visual pigment. Here, we have reviewed the roles of different ion channels expressed in ocular tissues (cornea, conjunctiva and neurons innervating the ocular surface, lens, retina, retinal pigment epithelium, and the inflow and outflow systems of the aqueous humor) that are involved in ocular disease pathophysiologies and those whose deletion or pharmacological modulation leads to specific diseases of the eye. These include pathologies such as retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration, achromatopsia, glaucoma, cataracts, dry eye, or keratoconjunctivitis among others. Several disease-associated ion channels are potential targets for pharmacological intervention or other therapeutic approaches, thus highlighting the importance of these channels in ocular physiology and pathophysiology.

  18. Modelling modal gating of ion channels with hierarchical Markov models

    PubMed Central

    Fackrell, Mark; Crampin, Edmund J.; Taylor, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Many ion channels spontaneously switch between different levels of activity. Although this behaviour known as modal gating has been observed for a long time it is currently not well understood. Despite the fact that appropriately representing activity changes is essential for accurately capturing time course data from ion channels, systematic approaches for modelling modal gating are currently not available. In this paper, we develop a modular approach for building such a model in an iterative process. First, stochastic switching between modes and stochastic opening and closing within modes are represented in separate aggregated Markov models. Second, the continuous-time hierarchical Markov model, a new modelling framework proposed here, then enables us to combine these components so that in the integrated model both mode switching as well as the kinetics within modes are appropriately represented. A mathematical analysis reveals that the behaviour of the hierarchical Markov model naturally depends on the properties of its components. We also demonstrate how a hierarchical Markov model can be parametrized using experimental data and show that it provides a better representation than a previous model of the same dataset. Because evidence is increasing that modal gating reflects underlying molecular properties of the channel protein, it is likely that biophysical processes are better captured by our new approach than in earlier models.

  19. Ion Channels in the Eye: Involvement in Ocular Pathologies.

    PubMed

    Giblin, Jonathan P; Comes, Nuria; Strauss, Olaf; Gasull, Xavier

    2016-01-01

    The eye is the sensory organ of vision. There, the retina transforms photons into electrical signals that are sent to higher brain areas to produce visual sensations. In the light path to the retina, different types of cells and tissues are involved in maintaining the transparency of avascular structures like the cornea or lens, while others, like the retinal pigment epithelium, have a critical role in the maintenance of photoreceptor function by regenerating the visual pigment. Here, we have reviewed the roles of different ion channels expressed in ocular tissues (cornea, conjunctiva and neurons innervating the ocular surface, lens, retina, retinal pigment epithelium, and the inflow and outflow systems of the aqueous humor) that are involved in ocular disease pathophysiologies and those whose deletion or pharmacological modulation leads to specific diseases of the eye. These include pathologies such as retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration, achromatopsia, glaucoma, cataracts, dry eye, or keratoconjunctivitis among others. Several disease-associated ion channels are potential targets for pharmacological intervention or other therapeutic approaches, thus highlighting the importance of these channels in ocular physiology and pathophysiology. PMID:27038375

  20. Modelling modal gating of ion channels with hierarchical Markov models

    PubMed Central

    Fackrell, Mark; Crampin, Edmund J.; Taylor, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Many ion channels spontaneously switch between different levels of activity. Although this behaviour known as modal gating has been observed for a long time it is currently not well understood. Despite the fact that appropriately representing activity changes is essential for accurately capturing time course data from ion channels, systematic approaches for modelling modal gating are currently not available. In this paper, we develop a modular approach for building such a model in an iterative process. First, stochastic switching between modes and stochastic opening and closing within modes are represented in separate aggregated Markov models. Second, the continuous-time hierarchical Markov model, a new modelling framework proposed here, then enables us to combine these components so that in the integrated model both mode switching as well as the kinetics within modes are appropriately represented. A mathematical analysis reveals that the behaviour of the hierarchical Markov model naturally depends on the properties of its components. We also demonstrate how a hierarchical Markov model can be parametrized using experimental data and show that it provides a better representation than a previous model of the same dataset. Because evidence is increasing that modal gating reflects underlying molecular properties of the channel protein, it is likely that biophysical processes are better captured by our new approach than in earlier models. PMID:27616917

  1. Crystal structures of a double-barrelled fluoride ion channel

    PubMed Central

    Stockbridge, Randy B.; Kolmakova-Partensky, Ludmila; Shane, Tania; Koide, Akiko; Koide, Shohei; Miller, Christopher; Newstead, Simon

    2016-01-01

    To contend with hazards posed by environmental fluoride, microorganisms export this anion through F--specific ion channels of the Fluc family1–4. Since the recent discovery of Fluc channels, numerous idiosyncratic features of these proteins have been unearthed, including extreme selectivity for F- over Cl- and dual-topology dimeric assembly5–6. To understand the chemical basis for F- permeation and how the antiparallel subunits convene to form a F--selective pore, we solved crystal structures of two bacterial Fluc homologues in complex with three different monobody inhibitors, with and without F- present, to a maximum resolution of 2.1 Å. The structures reveal a surprising “double-barrelled” channel architecture in which two F- ion pathways span the membrane and the dual-topology arrangement includes a centrally coordinated cation, most likely Na+. F- selectivity is proposed to arise from the very narrow pores and an unusual anion coordination that exploits the quadrupolar edges of conserved phenylalanine rings. PMID:26344196

  2. Nicotinic acid is a common regulator of heat-sensing TRPV1-4 ion channels.

    PubMed

    Ma, Linlin; Lee, Bo Hyun; Clifton, Heather; Schaefer, Saul; Zheng, Jie

    2015-03-10

    Nicotinic acid (NA, a.k.a. vitamin B3 or niacin) can reduce blood cholesterol and low-density lipoproteins whereas increase high-density lipoproteins. However, when NA is used to treat dyslipidemias, it causes a strong side effect of cutaneous vasodilation, commonly called flushing. A recent study showed that NA may cause flushing by lowering activation threshold temperature of the heat-sensitive capsaicin receptor TRPV1 ion channel, leading to its activation at body temperature. The finding calls into question whether NA might also interact with the homologous heat-sensitive TRPV2-4 channels, particularly given that TRPV3 and TRPV4 are abundantly expressed in keratinocytes of the skin where much of the flushing response occurs. We found that NA indeed potentiated TRPV3 while inhibited TRPV2 and TRPV4. Consistent with these gating effects, NA lowered the heat-activation threshold of TRPV3 but elevated that of TRPV4. We further found that activity of TRPV1 was substantially prolonged by extracellular NA, which may further enhance the direct activation effect. Consistent with the broad gating effect on TRPV1-4 channels, evidence from the present study hints that NA may share the same activation pathway as 2-aminoethoxydiphenyl borate (2-APB), a common agonist for these TRPV channels. These findings shed new light on the molecular mechanism underlying NA regulation of TRPV channels.

  3. Cavity Ring-Down System for Density Measurement of Negative Hydrogen Ion on Negative Ion Source

    SciTech Connect

    Nakano, Haruhisa; Tsumori, Katsuyoshi; Nagaoka, Kenichi; Shibuya, Masayuki; Kisaki, Masashi; Ikeda, Katsunori; Osakabe, Masaki; Kaneko, Osamu; Asano, Eiji; Kondo, Tomoki; Sato, Mamoru; Komada, Seiji; Sekiguchi, Haruo; Takeiri, Yasuhiko; Fantz, Ursel

    2011-09-26

    A Cavity Ring-Down (CRD) system was applied to measure the density of negative hydrogen ion (H{sup -}) in vicinity of extraction surface in the H{sup -} source for the development of neutral beam injector on Large Helical Device (LHD). The density measurement with sampling time of 50 ms was carried out. The measured density with the CRD system is relatively good agreement with the density evaluated from extracted beam-current with applying a similar relation of positive ion sources. In cesium seeded into ion-source plasma, the linearity between an arc power of the discharge and the measured density with the CRD system was observed. Additionally, the measured density was proportional to the extracted beam current. These characteristics indicate the CRD system worked well for H{sup -} density measurement in the region of H{sup -} and extraction.

  4. Voltage-Gated Ion Channels in Cancer Cell Proliferation

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Vidhya R.; Perez-Neut, Mathew; Kaja, Simon; Gentile, Saverio

    2015-01-01

    Changes of the electrical charges across the surface cell membrane are absolutely necessary to maintain cellular homeostasis in physiological as well as in pathological conditions. The opening of ion channels alter the charge distribution across the surface membrane as they allow the diffusion of ions such as K+, Ca++, Cl−, Na+. Traditionally, voltage-gated ion channels (VGIC) are known to play fundamental roles in controlling rapid bioelectrical signaling including action potential and/or contraction. However, several investigations have revealed that these classes of proteins can also contribute significantly to cell mitotic biochemical signaling, cell cycle progression, as well as cell volume regulation. All these functions are critically important for cancer cell proliferation. Interestingly, a variety of distinct VGICs are expressed in different cancer cell types, including metastasis but not in the tissues from which these tumors were generated. Given the increasing evidence suggesting that VGIC play a major role in cancer cell biology, in this review we discuss the role of distinct VGIC in cancer cell proliferation and possible therapeutic potential of VIGC pharmacological manipulation. PMID:26010603

  5. A parallel finite element simulator for ion transport through three-dimensional ion channel systems.

    PubMed

    Tu, Bin; Chen, Minxin; Xie, Yan; Zhang, Linbo; Eisenberg, Bob; Lu, Benzhuo

    2013-09-15

    A parallel finite element simulator, ichannel, is developed for ion transport through three-dimensional ion channel systems that consist of protein and membrane. The coordinates of heavy atoms of the protein are taken from the Protein Data Bank and the membrane is represented as a slab. The simulator contains two components: a parallel adaptive finite element solver for a set of Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) equations that describe the electrodiffusion process of ion transport, and a mesh generation tool chain for ion channel systems, which is an essential component for the finite element computations. The finite element method has advantages in modeling irregular geometries and complex boundary conditions. We have built a tool chain to get the surface and volume mesh for ion channel systems, which consists of a set of mesh generation tools. The adaptive finite element solver in our simulator is implemented using the parallel adaptive finite element package Parallel Hierarchical Grid (PHG) developed by one of the authors, which provides the capability of doing large scale parallel computations with high parallel efficiency and the flexibility of choosing high order elements to achieve high order accuracy. The simulator is applied to a real transmembrane protein, the gramicidin A (gA) channel protein, to calculate the electrostatic potential, ion concentrations and I - V curve, with which both primitive and transformed PNP equations are studied and their numerical performances are compared. To further validate the method, we also apply the simulator to two other ion channel systems, the voltage dependent anion channel (VDAC) and α-Hemolysin (α-HL). The simulation results agree well with Brownian dynamics (BD) simulation results and experimental results. Moreover, because ionic finite size effects can be included in PNP model now, we also perform simulations using a size-modified PNP (SMPNP) model on VDAC and α-HL. It is shown that the size effects in SMPNP can

  6. Identification of the Energetic Plume Ion Escape Channel at Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, B. C.; Liemohn, M. W.; Fraenz, M.; Barabash, S.

    2013-12-01

    Mars lacks a global dipole magnetic field. The resulting induced magnetosphere arising from Mars' atmosphere's direct interaction with the solar wind differs significantly from that of Venus. The weak gravitational field of Mars creates scale heights so large that the exosphere extends out beyond the Induced Magnetosphere Boundary (IMB), where newly ionized exospheric oxygen is exposed to high speed shocked solar wind flow and the associated strong convective electric field (E). The weaker Interplanetary Magnetic Field (IMF) at Mars, combined with this strong electric field, should be expected to result in heavy pickup ions with gyroradii much larger than the radius of Mars. Test particle models and hybrid models have predicted that these pickup ions create an energetic plume of escaping planetary ions that may have a flux on the same order of magnitude as the flow of planetary ions down the central tail loss channel. This study presents an analysis of data from the Ion Mass Analyzer aboard European Space Agency's Mars Express (MEX) to identify the presence of this energetic ion plume. We searched through the time period when Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) was operating simultaneously with MEX, and selected hundreds of time intervals when IMF proxies from MGS show the convective electric field to be aligned with the orbit of MEX. We then examined plots of the MEX orbit during these intervals and selected times when MEX was positioned on the +E side of Mars and outside the nominal IMB. Finally, from these intervals we identified the cases in which oxygen ions were detected with energies above 2 keV. The result is a set of several direct measurements of the energetic plume.

  7. Characterization of the internal ion environment of biofilms based on charge density and shape of ion.

    PubMed

    Kurniawan, Andi; Tsuchiya, Yuki; Eda, Shima; Morisaki, Hisao

    2015-12-01

    Biofilm polymers contain both electrically positively and negatively charged sites. These charged sites enable the biofilm to trap and retain ions leading to an important role of biofilm such as nutrient recycling and pollutant purification. Much work has focused on the ion-exchange capacity of biofilms, and they are known to adsorb ions through an exchange mechanism between the ions in solution and the ions adsorbed to the charged sites on the biofilm polymer. However, recent studies suggest that the adsorption/desorption behavior of ions in a biofilm cannot be explained solely by this ion exchange mechanism. To examine the possibility that a substantial amount of ions are held in the interstitial region of the biofilm polymer by an electrostatic interaction, intact biofilms formed in a natural environment were immersed in distilled water and ion desorption was investigated. All of the detected ion species were released from the biofilms over a short period of time, and very few ions were subsequently released over more time, indicating that the interstitial region of biofilm polymers is another ion reserve. The extent of ion retention in the interstitial region of biofilms for each ion can be determined largely by charge density, |Z|/r, where |Z| is the ion valence as absolute value and r is the ion radius. The higher |Z|/r value an ion has, the stronger it is retained in the interstitial region of biofilms. Ion shape is also a key determinant of ion retention. Spherical and non-spherical ions have different correlations between the condensation ratio and |Z|/r. The generality of these findings were assured by various biofilm samples. Thus, the internal regions of biofilms exchange ions dynamically with the outside environment.

  8. Stochastic resonance in ion channels characterized by information theory.

    PubMed

    Goychuk, I; Hänggi, P

    2000-04-01

    We identify a unifying measure for stochastic resonance (SR) in voltage dependent ion channels which comprises periodic (conventional), aperiodic, and nonstationary SR. Within a simplest setting, the gating dynamics is governed by two-state conductance fluctuations, which switch at random time points between two values. The corresponding continuous time point process is analyzed by virtue of information theory. In pursuing this goal we evaluate for our dynamics the tau information, the mutual information, and the rate of information gain. As a main result we find an analytical formula for the rate of information gain that solely involves the probability of the two channel states and their noise averaged rates. For small voltage signals it simplifies to a handy expression. Our findings are applied to study SR in a potassium channel. We find that SR occurs only when the closed state is predominantly dwelled upon. Upon increasing the probability for the open channel state the application of an extra dose of noise monotonically deteriorates the rate of information gain, i.e., no SR behavior occurs.

  9. Zinc as Allosteric Ion Channel Modulator: Ionotropic Receptors as Metalloproteins

    PubMed Central

    Peralta, Francisco Andrés; Huidobro-Toro, Juan Pablo

    2016-01-01

    Zinc is an essential metal to life. This transition metal is a structural component of many proteins and is actively involved in the catalytic activity of cell enzymes. In either case, these zinc-containing proteins are metalloproteins. However, the amino acid residues that serve as ligands for metal coordination are not necessarily the same in structural proteins compared to enzymes. While crystals of structural proteins that bind zinc reveal a higher preference for cysteine sulfhydryls rather than histidine imidazole rings, catalytic enzymes reveal the opposite, i.e., a greater preference for the histidines over cysteines for catalysis, plus the influence of carboxylic acids. Based on this paradigm, we reviewed the putative ligands of zinc in ionotropic receptors, where zinc has been described as an allosteric modulator of channel receptors. Although these receptors do not strictly qualify as metalloproteins since they do not normally bind zinc in structural domains, they do transitorily bind zinc at allosteric sites, modifying transiently the receptor channel’s ion permeability. The present contribution summarizes current information showing that zinc allosteric modulation of receptor channels occurs by the preferential metal coordination to imidazole rings as well as to the sulfhydryl groups of cysteine in addition to the carboxyl group of acid residues, as with enzymes and catalysis. It is remarkable that most channels, either voltage-sensitive or transmitter-gated receptor channels, are susceptible to zinc modulation either as positive or negative regulators. PMID:27384555

  10. Optimal Estimation of Ion-Channel Kinetics from Macroscopic Currents

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Xuhui; Yao, Jing; Yuchi, Ming; Ding, Jiuping

    2012-01-01

    Markov modeling provides an effective approach for modeling ion channel kinetics. There are several search algorithms for global fitting of macroscopic or single-channel currents across different experimental conditions. Here we present a particle swarm optimization(PSO)-based approach which, when used in combination with golden section search (GSS), can fit macroscopic voltage responses with a high degree of accuracy (errors within 1%) and reasonable amount of calculation time (less than 10 hours for 20 free parameters) on a desktop computer. We also describe a method for initial value estimation of the model parameters, which appears to favor identification of global optimum and can further reduce the computational cost. The PSO-GSS algorithm is applicable for kinetic models of arbitrary topology and size and compatible with common stimulation protocols, which provides a convenient approach for establishing kinetic models at the macroscopic level. PMID:22536358

  11. Focusing in multiwell potentials: applications to ion channels.

    PubMed

    Ponzoni, L; Celardo, G L; Borgonovi, F; Kaplan, L; Kargol, A

    2013-05-01

    We investigate nonequilibrium stationary distributions induced by stochastic dichotomous noise in double-well and multiwell models of ion channel gating kinetics. The channel kinetics is analyzed using both overdamped Langevin equations and master equations. With the Langevin equation approach we show a nontrivial focusing effect due to the external stochastic noise, namely, the concentration of the probability distribution in one of the two wells of a double-well system or in one or more of the wells of the multiwell model. In the multiwell system, focusing in the outer wells is shown to be achievable under physiological conditions, while focusing in the central wells has proved possible so far only at very low temperatures. We also discuss the strength of the focusing effect and obtain the conditions necessary for maximal focusing to appear. These conditions cannot be predicted by a simple master equation approach.

  12. Molecular candidates for cardiac stretch-activated ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Reed, Alistair; Kohl, Peter; Peyronnet, Rémi

    2014-01-01

    The heart is a mechanically-active organ that dynamically senses its own mechanical environment. This environment is constantly changing, on a beat-by-beat basis, with additional modulation by respiratory activity and changes in posture or physical activity, and further overlaid with more slowly occurring physiological (e.g. pregnancy, endurance training) or pathological challenges (e.g. pressure or volume overload). Far from being a simple pump, the heart detects changes in mechanical demand and adjusts its performance accordingly, both via heart rate and stroke volume alteration. Many of the underlying regulatory processes are encoded intracardially, and are thus maintained even in heart transplant recipients. Over the last three decades, molecular substrates of cardiac mechanosensitivity have gained increasing recognition in the scientific and clinical communities. Nonetheless, the processes underlying this phenomenon are still poorly understood. Stretch-activated ion channels (SAC) have been identified as one contributor to mechanosensitive autoregulation of the heartbeat. They also appear to play important roles in the development of cardiac pathologies – most notably stretch-induced arrhythmias. As recently discovered, some established cardiac drugs act, in part at least, via mechanotransduction pathways suggesting SAC as potential therapeutic targets. Clearly, identification of the molecular substrate of cardiac SAC is of clinical importance and a number of candidate proteins have been identified. At the same time, experimental studies have revealed variable–and at times contrasting–results regarding their function. Further complication arises from the fact that many ion channels that are not classically defined as SAC, including voltage and ligand-gated ion channels, can respond to mechanical stimulation. Here, we summarise what is known about the molecular substrate of the main candidates for cardiac SAC, before identifying potential further

  13. Current Density Measurements of an Annular-Geometry Ion Engine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shastry, Rohit; Patterson, Michael J.; Herman, Daniel A.; Foster, John E.

    2012-01-01

    The concept of the annular-geometry ion engine, or AGI-Engine, has been shown to have many potential benefits when scaling electric propulsion technologies to higher power. However, the necessary asymmetric location of the discharge cathode away from thruster centerline could potentially lead to non-uniformities in the discharge not present in conventional geometry ion thrusters. In an effort to characterize the degree of this potential nonuniformity, a number of current density measurements were taken on a breadboard AGI-Engine. Fourteen button probes were used to measure the ion current density of the discharge along a perforated electrode that replaced the ion optics during conditions of simulated beam extraction. Three Faraday probes spaced apart in the vertical direction were also used in a separate test to interrogate the plume of the AGI-Engine during true beam extraction. It was determined that both the discharge and the plume of the AGI-Engine are highly uniform, with variations under most conditions limited to 10% of the average current density in the discharge and 5% of the average current density in the plume. Beam flatness parameter measured 30 mm from the ion optics ranged from 0.85 0.95, and overall uniformity was shown to generally increase with increasing discharge and beam currents. These measurements indicate that the plasma is highly uniform despite the asymmetric location of the discharge cathode.

  14. Current Density Measurements of an Annular-Geometry Ion Engine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shastry, Rohit; Patterson, Michael J.; Herman, Daniel A.; Foster, John E.

    2012-01-01

    The concept of the annular-geometry ion engine, or AGI-Engine, has been shown to have many potential benefits when scaling electric propulsion technologies to higher power. However, the necessary asymmetric location of the discharge cathode away from thruster centerline could potentially lead to non-uniformities in the discharge not present in conventional geometry ion thrusters. In an effort to characterize the degree of this potential non-uniformity, a number of current density measurements were taken on a breadboard AGI-Engine. Fourteen button probes were used to measure the ion current density of the discharge along a perforated electrode that replaced the ion optics during conditions of simulated beam extraction. Three Faraday probes spaced apart in the vertical direction were also used in a separate test to interrogate the plume of the AGI-Engine during true beam extraction. It was determined that both the discharge and the plume of the AGI-Engine are highly uniform, with variations under most conditions limited to +/-10% of the average current density in the discharge and +/-5% of the average current density in the plume. Beam flatness parameter measured 30 mm from the ion optics ranged from 0.85 - 0.95, and overall uniformity was shown to generally increase with increasing discharge and beam currents. These measurements indicate that the plasma is highly uniform despite the asymmetric location of the discharge cathode.

  15. Ion Channel Conductance Measurements on a Silicon-Based Platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilk, S. J.; Aboud, S.; Petrossian, L.; Goryll, M.; Tang, J. M.; Eisenberg, R. S.; Saraniti, M.; Goodnick, S. M.; Thornton, T. J.

    2006-05-01

    Conductance measurements of the transmembrane porin protein OmpF as a function of pH and bath concentration have been made with both a microfabricated silicon substrate device and a commercially available polystyrene aperture. Ion transport through the channel was simulated in atomic detail: the measured current was compared with theoretically calculated current, using a Brownian Dynamics kernel coupled to the Poisson equation by a P3M force field. The explicit protein structure and fixed charge distribution in the protein are calculated using the molecular dynamics code, GROMACS. Reasonable agreement is obtained in the simulated versus measured conductance over the range of experimental concentrations studied.

  16. Receptors, Ion Channels, and Signaling Mechanisms Underlying Microglial Dynamics*

    PubMed Central

    Madry, Christian; Attwell, David

    2015-01-01

    Microglia, the innate immune cells of the CNS, play a pivotal role in brain injury and disease. Microglia are extremely motile; their highly ramified processes constantly survey the brain parenchyma, and they respond promptly to brain damage with targeted process movement toward the injury site. Microglia play a key role in brain development and function by pruning synapses during development, phagocytosing apoptotic newborn neurons, and regulating neuronal activity by direct microglia-neuron or indirect microglia-astrocyte-neuron interactions, which all depend on their process motility. This review highlights recent discoveries about microglial dynamics, focusing on the receptors, ion channels, and signaling pathways involved. PMID:25855789

  17. Flow visualization in a low-density plasma channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kimmel, R. L.; Hayes, J. R.; Estevadeordal, J.; Crafton, J. W.; Fonov, S. D.; Gogineni, S.

    2010-04-01

    A schlieren system and surface-stress-sensitive film system were developed for a plasma channel which posed unique challenges for flow visualization because of the combination of low air density and the presence of plasma discharges. Temperature-sensitive paint and direct-current discharge were also applied to flow visualization. Three pulsed schlieren light sources were evaluated. A light-emitting diode (LED), a xenon NanopulserTM and laser breakdown, were tested on identical flowfields. The LED provided excellent illumination, with pulses ranging from μs to continuous. The NanopulserTM provided excellent, short-duration images, although illumination varied from shot-to-shot. Laser-breakdown provided short-duration, incoherent illumination that was constant from pulse-to-pulse. The surface-stress-sensitive film was applied to surface flow visualization. A low-modulus elastomer doped with a luminescent dye was used to visualize the surface shear stress and pressure field in laminar shock boundary layer interactions. Intensity distributions from the dye were imaged to interrogate the surface pressure gradients. Displacement of surface markers provided shear information. Results showed the presence of Görtler vortices in the reattaching shear flow. Görtler vortices were also evident in temperature-sensitive paint images and in the plasma discharge glow. These vortices were evident in the intensity images from the elastomer, which could be related to the surface pressure gradient, but were not readily evident in surface shear measurements.

  18. Cardiac ion channel safety profiling on the IonWorks Quattro automated patch clamp system.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xueying; Lee, Yan Tony; Holmqvist, Mats; Lin, Yingxin; Ni, Yucheng; Mikhailov, Dmitri; Zhang, Haiyan; Hogan, Christopher; Zhou, Liping; Lu, Qiang; Digan, Mary Ellen; Urban, Laszlo; Erdemli, Gül

    2010-12-01

    The normal electrophysiologic behavior of the heart is determined by the integrated activity of specific cardiac ionic currents. Mutations in genes encoding the molecular components of individual cardiac ion currents have been shown to result in multiple cardiac arrhythmia syndromes. Presently, 12 genes associated with inherited long QT syndrome (LQTS) have been identified, and the most common mutations are in the hKCNQ1 (LQT1, Jervell and Lange-Nielson syndrome), hKCNH2 (LQT2), and hSCN5A (LQT3, Brugada syndrome) genes. Several drugs have been withdrawn from the market or received black box labeling due to clinical cases of QT interval prolongation, ventricular arrhythmias, and sudden death. Other drugs have been denied regulatory approval owing to their potential for QT interval prolongation. Further, off-target activity of drugs on cardiac ion channels has been shown to be associated with increased mortality in patients with underlying cardiovascular diseases. Since clinical arrhythmia risk is a major cause for compound termination, preclinical profiling for off-target cardiac ion channel interactions early in the drug discovery process has become common practice in the pharmaceutical industry. In the present study, we report assay development for three cardiac ion channels (hKCNQ1/minK, hCa(v)1.2, and hNa(v)1.5) on the IonWorks Quattro™ system. We demonstrate that these assays can be used as reliable pharmacological profiling tools for cardiac ion channel inhibition to assess compounds for cardiac liability during drug discovery.

  19. Transition from heating to cooling of channeled ion beams

    SciTech Connect

    Toepffer, Christian

    2006-06-15

    Experiments showing a transverse heating or cooling of channeled ion beams are explained in terms of electron capture and loss processes between the projectile ions and the target. Such processes violate reversibility as the projectile captures electrons from occupied bound states and loses them to unoccupied weakly bound or continuum states. The transition probabilities for the transfer of electrons are calculated in the impact parameter Born approximation. Their dependence on the distance from the crystal strings is determined by scale factors which depend in turn on the relative velocity and the binding energies of the transferred electrons in the projectile and in the crystal, respectively. The appearance of transverse heating and cooling depends on the relative size of the scale factors for capture and loss. The transition from heating to cooling as function of velocity is described in good agreement with the experiments.

  20. Parameterization of ion channeling half-angles and minimum yields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doyle, Barney L.

    2016-03-01

    A MS Excel program has been written that calculates ion channeling half-angles and minimum yields in cubic bcc, fcc and diamond lattice crystals. All of the tables and graphs in the three Ion Beam Analysis Handbooks that previously had to be manually looked up and read from were programed into Excel in handy lookup tables, or parameterized, for the case of the graphs, using rather simple exponential functions with different power functions of the arguments. The program then offers an extremely convenient way to calculate axial and planar half-angles, minimum yields, effects on half-angles and minimum yields of amorphous overlayers. The program can calculate these half-angles and minimum yields for axes and [h k l] planes up to (5 5 5). The program is open source and available at

  1. Note: High density pulsed molecular beam for cold ion chemistry.

    PubMed

    Kokish, M G; Rajagopal, V; Marler, J P; Odom, B C

    2014-08-01

    A recent expansion of cold and ultracold molecule applications has led to renewed focus on molecular species preparation under ultrahigh vacuum conditions. Meanwhile, molecular beams have been used to study gas phase chemical reactions for decades. In this paper, we describe an apparatus that uses pulsed molecular beam technology to achieve high local gas densities, leading to faster reaction rates with cold trapped ions. We characterize the beam's spatial profile using the trapped ions themselves. This apparatus could be used for preparation of molecular species by reactions requiring excitation of trapped ion precursors to states with short lifetimes or for obtaining a high reaction rate with minimal increase of background chamber pressure.

  2. Note: High density pulsed molecular beam for cold ion chemistry

    SciTech Connect

    Kokish, M. G.; Rajagopal, V.; Marler, J. P.; Odom, B. C.

    2014-08-15

    A recent expansion of cold and ultracold molecule applications has led to renewed focus on molecular species preparation under ultrahigh vacuum conditions. Meanwhile, molecular beams have been used to study gas phase chemical reactions for decades. In this paper, we describe an apparatus that uses pulsed molecular beam technology to achieve high local gas densities, leading to faster reaction rates with cold trapped ions. We characterize the beam's spatial profile using the trapped ions themselves. This apparatus could be used for preparation of molecular species by reactions requiring excitation of trapped ion precursors to states with short lifetimes or for obtaining a high reaction rate with minimal increase of background chamber pressure.

  3. Ion Upflow Dependence on Ionospheric Density and Solar Photoionization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, I. J.; Lessard, M.; Varney, R. H.; Oksavik, K.; Zettergren, M. D.; Lynch, K. A.

    2015-12-01

    Wahlund et al. [1992] first categorized the upflow of ionospheric ions into two types: that driven by ion frictional heating and that caused by auroral precipitation. Motivated by rocket observations showing a variety of different ionospheric responses to precipitation, this paper explores the influence of the background ionospheric density on upflow resulting from auroral precipitation. Simulations of upflow driven by auroral precipitation were conducted using a version of the Varney et al. [2014] model driven by precipitation characterized by observations made during the 2012 Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Coupling in the Alfvén resonator (MICA) rocket mission and using a variety of different initial electron density profiles. The simulation results show that increased initial density before the onset of precipitation leads to smaller electron temperature increases, longer ionospheric heating timescales, weaker ambipolar electric fields, lower upflow speeds, longer upflow timescales, but larger upflow fluxes. The upflow flux can increase even when the ambipolar electric field strength decreases due to the larger number of ions that are accelerated. Long-term observations from the European Incoherent Scatter (EISCAT) Svalbard radar taken during the International Polar Year (IPY) support the effects seen in the simulations. This correlation between ionospheric density and ion upflows emphasizes the important role of photoionization from solar ultraviolet radiation, which the EISCAT observations show can increase ionospheric density by as much as an order of magnitude during the summer months.

  4. Energetics of Ion Permeation in an Open-Activated TRPV1 Channel.

    PubMed

    Jorgensen, Christian; Furini, Simone; Domene, Carmen

    2016-09-20

    Ion channels enable diffusion of ions down physiological electrochemical gradients. Modulation of ion permeation is crucial for the physiological functioning of cells, and misregulation of ion channels is linked to a myriad of channelopathies. The ion permeation mechanism in the transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channel family is currently not understood at an atomistic level. In this work, we employed a simulation strategy for ion permeation (molecular-dynamics simulations with bias-exchange metadynamics) to study and compare monovalent (Na(+), K(+)) ion permeation in the open-activated TRP vanniloid-1 (TRPV1) ion channel. Using ∼3.6 μs of simulation trajectories, we obtained atomistic evidence for the nonselective nature of TRPV1. Our analysis shows that solvated monovalent ions permeate through the selectivity filter with comparable energetic barriers via a two-site mechanism. Finally, we confirmed that an intracellular binding site is located between the intracellular gate residues I679 and E684. PMID:27653480

  5. Energetics of Ion Permeation in an Open-Activated TRPV1 Channel.

    PubMed

    Jorgensen, Christian; Furini, Simone; Domene, Carmen

    2016-09-20

    Ion channels enable diffusion of ions down physiological electrochemical gradients. Modulation of ion permeation is crucial for the physiological functioning of cells, and misregulation of ion channels is linked to a myriad of channelopathies. The ion permeation mechanism in the transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channel family is currently not understood at an atomistic level. In this work, we employed a simulation strategy for ion permeation (molecular-dynamics simulations with bias-exchange metadynamics) to study and compare monovalent (Na(+), K(+)) ion permeation in the open-activated TRP vanniloid-1 (TRPV1) ion channel. Using ∼3.6 μs of simulation trajectories, we obtained atomistic evidence for the nonselective nature of TRPV1. Our analysis shows that solvated monovalent ions permeate through the selectivity filter with comparable energetic barriers via a two-site mechanism. Finally, we confirmed that an intracellular binding site is located between the intracellular gate residues I679 and E684.

  6. An industrial perspective on utilizing functional ion channel assays for high throughput screening.

    PubMed

    Worley, Jennings F; Main, Martin J

    2002-01-01

    The ability to apply large-scale screening formats to measures of ion channel function offers immense opportunities for drug discovery and academic research. Technologies have been developed over the last several years that now provide the ability to screen large numbers of compounds and natural products on ion channel function to find novel drugs. Application of these technologies has vastly improved the capabilities of ion channel drug discovery and provides an avenue to accelerate discoveries of ion channel biology. These advances have largely arisen from the development and application of instruments and reporters of membrane potential and ion movements in cells used to measure functional activity of ion channels. This article endeavors to describe the practical applications of these technologies in developing, validating, and implementing high throughput screening assay formats to different types of ion channels.

  7. Molecular basis of ion permeability in a voltage-gated sodium channel.

    PubMed

    Naylor, Claire E; Bagnéris, Claire; DeCaen, Paul G; Sula, Altin; Scaglione, Antonella; Clapham, David E; Wallace, B A

    2016-04-15

    Voltage-gated sodium channels are essential for electrical signalling across cell membranes. They exhibit strong selectivities for sodium ions over other cations, enabling the finely tuned cascade of events associated with action potentials. This paper describes the ion permeability characteristics and the crystal structure of a prokaryotic sodium channel, showing for the first time the detailed locations of sodium ions in the selectivity filter of a sodium channel. Electrostatic calculations based on the structure are consistent with the relative cation permeability ratios (Na(+) ≈ Li(+) ≫ K(+), Ca(2+), Mg(2+)) measured for these channels. In an E178D selectivity filter mutant constructed to have altered ion selectivities, the sodium ion binding site nearest the extracellular side is missing. Unlike potassium ions in potassium channels, the sodium ions in these channels appear to be hydrated and are associated with side chains of the selectivity filter residues, rather than polypeptide backbones. PMID:26873592

  8. [Application of Brownian dynamics to the description of transmembrane ion flow as exemplified by the chloride channel of glycine receptor].

    PubMed

    Boronovskiĭ, S E; Nartsissov, Ia R

    2009-01-01

    Using the Brownian dynamics of the movement of hydrated ion in a viscous water solution, a mathematical model has been built, which describes the transport of charged particles through a single protein pore in a lipid membrane. The dependences of transmembrane ion currents on ion concentrations in solution have been obtained. It was shown that, if the geometry of a membrane pore is identical to that of the inner part of the glycine receptor channel and there is no ion selectivity, then the values of both chloride and sodium currents are not greater than 0.5 pA at the physiological concentrations of these ions. If local charge heterogeneity caused by charged amino acid residues of transmembrane protein segments is included into the model calculations, the chloride current increases to about 3.7 pA, which exceeds more than seven times the value for sodium ions under the conditions of the complex channel geometry in the range of physiological concentrations of ions in the solution. The model takes changes in the density of charge distribution both inside the channel and near the protein surface into account. The alteration of pore geometry can be also considered as a parameter at the researcher's option. Thus, the model appears as an effective tool for the description of transmembrane currents for other types of membrane channels.

  9. Cooperation of Hydrophobic Gating, Knock-on Effect, and Ion Binding Determines Ion Selectivity in the p7 Channel.

    PubMed

    Padhi, Siladitya; Priyakumar, U Deva

    2016-05-19

    Ion channels selectively allow certain ions to pass through at much higher rates than others, and thereby modulate ionic concentrations across cell membranes. The current molecular dynamics study elucidates the intricate mechanisms that render ion selectivity to the viral channel p7 by employing free energy calculations. Free energy barriers of 5.4 and 19.4 kcal mol(-1) for K(+) and Ca(2+), respectively, explain the selectivity of the channel reported in experiments. Initially, the permeating ions encounter a hydrophobic barrier followed by stabilization in an ion-binding site. Electrostatic repulsion between the permeating ions propels one of the ions out of the binding site to complete the process of permeation. K(+) and Ca(2+) are seen to exhibit different modes of binding toward a ring of asparagine residues, which serves as the binding site. The findings illustrate how the overall selectivity of a channel can be achieved by a combination of subtle differences. PMID:27111292

  10. Ion Channel Formation by Tau Protein: Implications for Alzheimer’s Disease and Tauopathies

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Tau is a microtubule associated protein implicated in the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Because of the channel forming properties of other amyloid peptides, we employed planar lipid bilayers and atomic force microscopy to test tau for its ability to form ion permeable channels. Our results demonstrate that tau can form such channels, but only under acidic conditions. The channels formed are remarkably similar to amyloid peptide channels in their appearance, physical and electrical size, permanence, lack of ion selectivity, and multiple channel conductances. These channels differ from amyloid channels in their voltage dependence and resistance to blockade by zinc ion. These channels could explain tau’s pathologic role in disease by lowering membrane potential, dysregulating calcium, depolarizing mitochondria, or depleting energy stores. Tau might also combine with amyloid beta peptides to form toxic channels. PMID:26575330

  11. Zebrafish: a novel research tool for cardiac (patho)electrophysiology and ion channel disorders.

    PubMed

    Verkerk, Arie O; Remme, Carol Ann

    2012-01-01

    The zebrafish is a cold-blooded tropical freshwater teleost with two-chamber heart morphology. A major advantage of the zebrafish for heart studies is that the embryo is transparent, allowing for easy assessment of heart development, heart rate analysis and phenotypic characterization. Moreover, rapid and effective gene-specific knockdown can be achieved using morpholino oligonucleotides. Lastly, zebrafish are small in size, are easy to maintain and house, grow fast, and have large offspring size, making them a cost-efficient research model. Zebrafish embryonic and adult heart rates as well as action potential (AP) shape and duration and electrocardiogram morphology closely resemble those of humans. However, whether the zebrafish is truly an attractive alternative model for human cardiac electrophysiology depends on the presence and gating properties of the various ion channels in the zebrafish heart, but studies into the latter are as yet limited. The rapid component of the delayed rectifier K(+) current (I(Kr)) remains the best characterized and validated ion current in zebrafish myocytes, and zebrafish may represent a valuable model to investigate human I(Kr) channel-related disease, including long QT syndrome. Arguments against the use of zebrafish as model for human cardiac (patho)electrophysiology include its cold-bloodedness and two-chamber heart morphology, absence of t-tubuli, sarcoplamatic reticulum function, and a different profile of various depolarizing and repolarizing ion channels, including a limited Na(+) current density. Based on the currently available literature, we propose that zebrafish may constitute a relevant research model for investigating ion channel disorders associated with abnormal repolarization, but may be less suitable for studying depolarization disorders or Ca(2+)-modulated arrhythmias. PMID:22934012

  12. Ion densities and composition of Titan's upper atmosphere derived from the Cassini Ion Neutral Mass Spectrometer: Analysis methods and comparison of measured ion densities to photochemical model simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandt, Kathleen E.; Gell, David A.; Perry, Mark; Hunter Waite, J., Jr.; Crary, Frank A.; Young, David; Magee, Brian A.; Westlake, Joseph H.; Cravens, Thomas; Kasprzak, Wayne; Miller, Greg; Wahlund, Jan-Erik; Ågren, Karin; Edberg, Niklas J. T.; Heays, Alan N.; Lewis, Brenton R.; Gibson, Stephen T.; de la Haye, V.; Liang, Mao-Chang

    2012-10-01

    The Cassini Ion Neutral Mass Spectrometer (INMS) has measured both neutral and ion species in Titan's upper atmosphere and ionosphere and the Enceladus plumes. Ion densities derived from INMS measurements are essential data for constraining photochemical models of Titan's ionosphere. The objective of this paper is to present an optimized method for converting raw data measured by INMS to ion densities. To do this, we conduct a detailed analysis of ground and in-flight calibration to constrain the instrument response to ion energy, the critical parameter on which the calibration is based. Data taken by the Cassini Radio Plasma Wave Science Langmuir Probe and the Cassini Plasma Spectrometer Ion Beam Spectrometer are used as independent measurement constraints in this analysis. Total ion densities derived with this method show good agreement with these data sets in the altitude region (˜1100-1400 km) where ion drift velocities are low and the mass of the ions is within the measurement range of the INMS (1-99 Daltons). Although ion densities calculated by the method presented here differ slightly from those presented in previous INMS publications, we find that the implications for the science presented in previous publications is mostly negligible. We demonstrate the role of the INMS ion densities in constraining photochemical models and find that (1) cross sections having high resolution as a function of wavelength are necessary for calculating the initial photoionization products and (2) there are disagreements between the measured ion densities representative of the initial steps in Titan photochemistry that require further investigation.

  13. Computational studies of transport in ion channels using metadynamics.

    PubMed

    Furini, Simone; Domene, Carmen

    2016-07-01

    Molecular dynamics simulations have played a fundamental role in numerous fields of science by providing insights into the structure and dynamics of complex systems at the atomistic level. However, exhaustive sampling by standard molecular dynamics is in most cases computationally prohibitive, and the time scales accessible remain significantly shorter than many biological processes of interest. In particular, in the study of ion channels, realistic models to describe permeation and gating require accounting for large numbers of particles and accurate interaction potentials, which severely limits the length of the simulations. To overcome such limitations, several advanced methods have been proposed among which is metadynamics. In this algorithm, an external bias potential to accelerate sampling along selected collective variables is introduced. This bias potential discourages visiting regions of the configurational space already explored. In addition, the bias potential provides an estimate of the free energy as a function of the collective variables chosen once the simulation has converged. In this review, recent contributions of metadynamics to the field of ion channels are discussed, including how metadynamics has been used to search for transition states, predict permeation pathways, treat conformational flexibility that underlies the coupling between gating and permeation, or compute free energy of permeation profiles. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Membrane Proteins edited by J.C. Gumbart and Sergei Noskov.

  14. Interaction of a polar molecule with an ion channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levadny, V.; Aguilella, V. M.; Aguilella-Arzo, M.; Belaya, M.

    2004-10-01

    The binding of a polar macromolecule to a large ion channel is studied theoretically, paying special attention to the influence of external conditions (applied voltage and ion strength of solution). The molecule behavior in bound state is considered as random thermal fluctuations within a limited fraction of its phase space. The mean duration of molecule binding (residence time τr ) is represented as the mean first passage time to reach the boundary of that restricted domain. By invoking the adiabatic approximation we reduce the problem to one dimension with the angle between macromolecule dipole and channel axes being the key variable of the problem. The model accounts for experimental measurements of τr for the antibiotic Ampicillin within the bacterial porin OmpF of Escherichia coli. By assuming that the electrical interaction between Ampicillin dipole and OmpF ionizable groups affects the fluctuations, we find that the biased residence time-voltage dependence observed in experiments is the result of the strong transversal electric field in OmpF constriction with a tilt ˜30° aside the cis side.

  15. Glutamate Receptor Ion Channels: Structure, Regulation, and Function

    PubMed Central

    Wollmuth, Lonnie P.; McBain, Chris J.; Menniti, Frank S.; Vance, Katie M.; Ogden, Kevin K.; Hansen, Kasper B.; Yuan, Hongjie; Myers, Scott J.; Dingledine, Ray

    2010-01-01

    The mammalian ionotropic glutamate receptor family encodes 18 gene products that coassemble to form ligand-gated ion channels containing an agonist recognition site, a transmembrane ion permeation pathway, and gating elements that couple agonist-induced conformational changes to the opening or closing of the permeation pore. Glutamate receptors mediate fast excitatory synaptic transmission in the central nervous system and are localized on neuronal and non-neuronal cells. These receptors regulate a broad spectrum of processes in the brain, spinal cord, retina, and peripheral nervous system. Glutamate receptors are postulated to play important roles in numerous neurological diseases and have attracted intense scrutiny. The description of glutamate receptor structure, including its transmembrane elements, reveals a complex assembly of multiple semiautonomous extracellular domains linked to a pore-forming element with striking resemblance to an inverted potassium channel. In this review we discuss International Union of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology glutamate receptor nomenclature, structure, assembly, accessory subunits, interacting proteins, gene expression and translation, post-translational modifications, agonist and antagonist pharmacology, allosteric modulation, mechanisms of gating and permeation, roles in normal physiological function, as well as the potential therapeutic use of pharmacological agents acting at glutamate receptors. PMID:20716669

  16. Interaction of a polar molecule with an ion channel

    SciTech Connect

    Levadny, V.; Aguilella, V.M.; Aguilella-Arzo, M.; Belaya, M.

    2004-10-01

    The binding of a polar macromolecule to a large ion channel is studied theoretically, paying special attention to the influence of external conditions (applied voltage and ion strength of solution). The molecule behavior in bound state is considered as random thermal fluctuations within a limited fraction of its phase space. The mean duration of molecule binding (residence time {tau}{sub r}) is represented as the mean first passage time to reach the boundary of that restricted domain. By invoking the adiabatic approximation we reduce the problem to one dimension with the angle between macromolecule dipole and channel axes being the key variable of the problem. The model accounts for experimental measurements of {tau}{sub r} for the antibiotic Ampicillin within the bacterial porin OmpF of Escherichia coli. By assuming that the electrical interaction between Ampicillin dipole and OmpF ionizable groups affects the fluctuations, we find that the biased residence time-voltage dependence observed in experiments is the result of the strong transversal electric field in OmpF constriction with a tilt {approx}30 deg. aside the cis side.

  17. Controlled fabrication of ion track nanowires and channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spohr, Reimar; Zet, Cristian; Eberhard Fischer, Bernd; Kiesewetter, Helge; Apel, Pavel; Gunko, Igor; Ohgai, Takeshi; Westerberg, Lars

    2010-03-01

    We describe a system for fabricating prescribed numbers of ion track nanochannels and nanowires from a few hundred down to one. It consists of two parts: first, a mobile tape transport system, which, in connection with an ion beam from a heavy-ion accelerator (nuclear charge Z above 18 and specific energy between 1 and 10 MeV/nucleon) tuned down to low flux density by means of defocusing and a set of sensitive fluorescence screens, can fabricate a series of equidistant irradiation spots on a tape, whereby each spot corresponds to a preset number of ion tracks. The tape transport system uses films of 36 mm width and thicknesses between 5 and 100 μm. The aiming precision of the system depends on the diameter of the installed beam-defining aperture, which is between 50 and 500 μm. The distance between neighboring irradiation spots on the tape is variable and typically set to 25 mm. After reaching the preset number of ion counts the irradiation is terminated, the tape is marked and moved to the next position. The irradiated frames are punched out to circular membranes with the irradiation spot in the center. The second part of the setup is a compact conductometric system with 10 picoampere resolution consisting of a computer controlled conductometric cell, sealing the membrane hermetically between two chemically inert half-chambers containing electrodes and filling/flushing openings, and is encased by an electrical shield and a thermal insulation. The ion tracks can be etched to a preset diameter and the system can be programmed to electroreplicate nanochannels in a prescribed sequence of magnetic/nonmagnetic metals, alloys or semiconductors. The goal of our article is to make the scientific community aware of the special features of single-ion fabrication and to demonstrate convincingly the significance of controlled etching and electro-replication.

  18. Charge density dependent two-channel conduction in organic electric double layer transistors (EDLTs).

    PubMed

    Xie, Wei; Liu, Feilong; Shi, Sha; Ruden, P Paul; Frisbie, C Daniel

    2014-04-23

    A transport model based on hole-density-dependent trapping is proposed to explain the two unusual conductivity peaks at surface hole densities above 10(13) cm(-2) in rubrene electric double layer transistors (EDLTs). Hole transport in rubrene is described to occur via multiple percolation pathways, where conduction is dominated by transport in the free-site channel at low hole density, and in the trap-site channel at larger hole density. PMID:24496822

  19. Coarse architecture of the transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) ion channel determined by fluorescence resonance energy transfer.

    PubMed

    De-la-Rosa, Víctor; Rangel-Yescas, Gisela E; Ladrón-de-Guevara, Ernesto; Rosenbaum, Tamara; Islas, León D

    2013-10-11

    The transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 ion channel is responsible for the perception of high temperatures and low extracellular pH, and it is also involved in the response to some pungent compounds. Importantly, it is also associated with the perception of pain and noxious stimuli. Here, we attempt to discern the molecular organization and location of the N and C termini of the transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 ion channel by measuring FRET between genetically attached enhanced yellow and cyan fluorescent protein to the N or C terminus of the channel protein, expressed in transfected HEK 293 cells or Xenopus laevis oocytes. The static measurements of the domain organization were mapped into an available cryo-electron microscopy density of the channel with good agreement. These measurements also provide novel insights into the organization of terminal domains and their proximity to the plasma membrane. PMID:23965996

  20. Receptor for protons: First observations on Acid Sensing Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Krishtal, Oleg

    2015-07-01

    The history of ASICs began in 1980 with unexpected observation. The concept of highly selective Na(+) current gated by specific receptors for protons was not easily accepted. It took 16 years to get these receptor/channels cloned and start a new stage in their investigation. "The receptor for protons" became ASIC comprising under this name a family of receptor/channels ubiquitous for mammalian nervous system, both peripheral and central. The role of ASICs as putative nociceptors was suggested almost immediately after their discovery. This role subsequently was proven in many forms of pain-related phenomena. Many other functions of ASICs have been also found or primed for speculations both in physiology and in disease. Despite the width of field and strength of efforts, numerous basic questions are to be answered before we understand how the local changes in pH in the nervous tissue transform into electric and messenger signaling via ASICs as transducers. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Acid-Sensing Ion Channels in the Nervous System'.

  1. Computational Tools for Interpreting Ion Channel pH-Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Sazanavets, Ivan; Warwicker, Jim

    2015-01-01

    Activity in many biological systems is mediated by pH, involving proton titratable groups with pKas in the relevant pH range. Experimental analysis of pH-dependence in proteins focusses on particular sidechains, often with mutagenesis of histidine, due to its pKa near to neutral pH. The key question for algorithms that predict pKas is whether they are sufficiently accurate to effectively narrow the search for molecular determinants of pH-dependence. Through analysis of inwardly rectifying potassium (Kir) channels and acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), mutational effects on pH-dependence are probed, distinguishing between groups described as pH-coupled or pH-sensor. Whereas mutation can lead to a shift in transition pH between open and closed forms for either type of group, only for pH-sensor groups does mutation modulate the amplitude of the transition. It is shown that a hybrid Finite Difference Poisson-Boltzmann (FDPB) – Debye-Hückel continuum electrostatic model can filter mutation candidates, providing enrichment for key pH-coupled and pH-sensor residues in both ASICs and Kir channels, in comparison with application of FDPB alone. PMID:25915903

  2. Computational Tools for Interpreting Ion Channel pH-Dependence.

    PubMed

    Sazanavets, Ivan; Warwicker, Jim

    2015-01-01

    Activity in many biological systems is mediated by pH, involving proton titratable groups with pKas in the relevant pH range. Experimental analysis of pH-dependence in proteins focusses on particular sidechains, often with mutagenesis of histidine, due to its pKa near to neutral pH. The key question for algorithms that predict pKas is whether they are sufficiently accurate to effectively narrow the search for molecular determinants of pH-dependence. Through analysis of inwardly rectifying potassium (Kir) channels and acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), mutational effects on pH-dependence are probed, distinguishing between groups described as pH-coupled or pH-sensor. Whereas mutation can lead to a shift in transition pH between open and closed forms for either type of group, only for pH-sensor groups does mutation modulate the amplitude of the transition. It is shown that a hybrid Finite Difference Poisson-Boltzmann (FDPB) - Debye-Hückel continuum electrostatic model can filter mutation candidates, providing enrichment for key pH-coupled and pH-sensor residues in both ASICs and Kir channels, in comparison with application of FDPB alone. PMID:25915903

  3. Structure of the TRPA1 ion channel suggests regulatory mechanisms

    PubMed Central

    Paulsen, Candice E.; Armache, Jean-Paul; Gao, Yuan; Cheng, Yifan; Julius, David

    2015-01-01

    The TRPA1 ion channel (a.k.a the ‘wasabi receptor’) is a detector of noxious chemical agents encountered in our environment or produced endogenously during tissue injury or drug metabolism. These include a broad class of electrophiles that activate the channel through covalent protein modification. TRPA1 antagonists hold potential for treating neurogenic inflammatory conditions provoked or exacerbated by irritant exposure. Despite compelling reasons to understand TRPA1 function, structural mechanisms underlying channel regulation remain obscure. Here, we use single-particle electron cryo-microscopy to determine the structure of full-length human TRPA1 to ~4Å resolution in the presence of pharmacophores, including a potent antagonist. A number of unexpected features are revealed, including an extensive coiled-coil assembly domain stabilized by polyphosphate co-factors and a highly integrated nexus that converges on an unpredicted TRP-like allosteric domain. These findings provide novel insights into mechanisms of TRPA1 regulation, and establish a blueprint for structure-based design of analgesic and anti-inflammatory agents. PMID:25855297

  4. Computational Tools for Interpreting Ion Channel pH-Dependence.

    PubMed

    Sazanavets, Ivan; Warwicker, Jim

    2015-01-01

    Activity in many biological systems is mediated by pH, involving proton titratable groups with pKas in the relevant pH range. Experimental analysis of pH-dependence in proteins focusses on particular sidechains, often with mutagenesis of histidine, due to its pKa near to neutral pH. The key question for algorithms that predict pKas is whether they are sufficiently accurate to effectively narrow the search for molecular determinants of pH-dependence. Through analysis of inwardly rectifying potassium (Kir) channels and acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), mutational effects on pH-dependence are probed, distinguishing between groups described as pH-coupled or pH-sensor. Whereas mutation can lead to a shift in transition pH between open and closed forms for either type of group, only for pH-sensor groups does mutation modulate the amplitude of the transition. It is shown that a hybrid Finite Difference Poisson-Boltzmann (FDPB) - Debye-Hückel continuum electrostatic model can filter mutation candidates, providing enrichment for key pH-coupled and pH-sensor residues in both ASICs and Kir channels, in comparison with application of FDPB alone.

  5. Targeting Ion Channels: An Important Therapeutic Implication in Gastrointestinal Dysmotility in Patients With Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Radulovic, Miroslav; Anand, Preeti; Korsten, Mark A; Gong, Bing

    2015-01-01

    Gastrointestinal (GI) dysmotility is a severe, and common complication in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI). Current therapeutic methods using acetylcholine analogs or laxative agents have unwanted side effects, besides often fail to have desired effect. Various ion channels such as ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channel, calcium ions (Ca2+)-activated potassium ions (K+) channels, voltage-sensitive Ca2+ channels and chloride ion (Cl−) channels are abundantly expressed in GI tissues, and play an important role in regulating GI motility. The release of neurotransmitters from the enteric nerve terminal, innervating GI interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC), and smooth muscle cells (SMC), causes inactivation of K+ and Cl− channels, increasing Ca2+ influx into cytoplasm, resulting in membrane depolarization and smooth muscle contraction. Thus, agents directly regulating ion channels activity either in ICC or in SMC may affect GI peristalsis and would be potential therapeutic target for the treatment of GI dysmotility with SCI. PMID:26424038

  6. Ion exchange phase transitions in water-filled channels with charged walls.

    PubMed

    Zhang, J; Kamenev, A; Shklovskii, B I

    2006-05-01

    Ion transport through narrow water-filled channels is impeded by a high electrostatic barrier. The latter originates from the large ratio of the dielectric constants of the water and the surrounding media. We show that "doping," i.e., immobile charges attached to the walls of the channel, substantially reduces the barrier. This explains why most of the biological ion channels are "doped." We show that at rather generic conditions the channels may undergo ion exchange phase transitions (typically of the first order). Upon such a transition a finite latent concentration of ions may either enter or leave the channel, or be exchanged between the ions of different valences. We discuss possible implications of these transitions for the Ca-vs-Na selectivity of biological Ca channels. We also show that transport of divalent Ca ions is assisted by their fractionalization into two separate excitations.

  7. Electron density topography based model to explore N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor channel blockers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ingle, Snehal V.; Joshi, Kaustubh A.

    2016-03-01

    The dwell time of a molecule in a voltage dependent NMDA receptor channel is an important factor in defining its activity as channel blocker. A model has been designed, based on quantum chemical descriptors like geometrical parameters, charge distribution, electron density topography and global reactivity descriptors, to shed lights on the dwell time of a channel blocker. Structure and charge distribution studies indicate polarization of molecules with the electron density located at the core of the molecule. Electron density topography reveals ring critical point (ρrcp), emerging as a signature parameter to understand the dwell time of a channel blocker molecule.

  8. Hydrogen peroxide affects ion channels in lily pollen grain protoplasts.

    PubMed

    Breygina, M A; Abramochkin, D V; Maksimov, N M; Yermakov, I P

    2016-09-01

    Ion homeostasis plays a central role in polarisation and polar growth. In several cell types ion channels are controlled by reactive oxygen species (ROS). One of the most important cells in the plant life cycle is the male gametophyte, which grows under the tight control of both ion fluxes and ROS balance. The precise relationship between these two factors in pollen tubes has not been completely elucidated, and in pollen grains it has never been studied to date. In the present study we used a simple model - protoplasts obtained from lily pollen grains at the early germination stage - to reveal the effect of H2 O2 on cation fluxes crucial for pollen germination. Here we present direct evidence for two ROS-sensitive currents on the pollen grain plasma membrane: the hyperpolarisation-activated calcium current, which is strongly enhanced by H2 O2 , and the outward potassium current, which is modestly enhanced by H2 O2 . We used low concentrations of H2 O2 that do not cause an intracellular oxidative burst and do not damage cells, as demonstrated with fluorescent staining. PMID:27115728

  9. The Role of Ion Channels in Microglial Activation and Proliferation – A Complex Interplay between Ligand-Gated Ion Channels, K+ Channels, and Intracellular Ca2+

    PubMed Central

    Stebbing, Martin James; Cottee, Jennifer Marie; Rana, Indrajeetsinh

    2015-01-01

    Microglia are often referred to as the immune cells of the brain. They are most definitely involved in immune responses to invading pathogens and inflammatory responses to tissue damage. However, recent results suggest microglia are vital for normal functioning of the brain. Neuroinflammation, as well as more subtle changes, in microglial function has been implicated in the pathogenesis of many brain diseases and disorders. Upon sensing alterations in their local environment, microglia change their shape and release factors that can modify the excitability of surrounding neurons. During neuroinflammation, microglia proliferate and release NO, reactive oxygen species, cytokines and chemokines. If inflammation resolves then their numbers normalize again via apoptosis. Microglia express a wide array of ion channels and different types are implicated in all of the cellular processes listed above. Modulation of microglial ion channels has shown great promise as a therapeutic strategy in several brain disorders. In this review, we discuss recent advances in our knowledge of microglial ion channels and their roles in responses of microglia to changes in the extracellular milieu. PMID:26557116

  10. Ion Channel Mimetic Chronopotentiometric Polymeric Membrane Ion Sensor for Surface Confined Protein Detection

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yida

    2008-01-01

    The operation of ion channel sensors is mimicked with functionalized polymeric membrane electrodes, using a surface confined affinity reaction to impede the electrochemically imposed ion transfer kinetics of a marker ion. A membrane surface biotinylated by covalent attachment to the polymeric backbone is used here to bind to the protein avidin as a model system. The results indicate that the protein accumulates on the ion-selective membrane surface, partially blocking the current induced ion transfer across the membrane/aqueous sample interface, and subsequently decreases the potential jump in the so-called super-Nernstian step that is characteristic of a surface depletion of the marker ion. The findings suggest that such a potential drop could be utilized to measure the concentration of protein in the sample. Because the sensitivity of protein sensing is dependent on the effective blocking of the active surface area, it can be improved with a hydrophilic nanopore membrane applied on top of the biotinylated ion-selective membrane surface. Based on cyclic voltammetry characterization, the nanoporous membrane electrodes can indeed be understood as a recessed nanoelectrode array. The results show that the measuring range for protein sensing on nanopore electrodes is shifted to lower concentrations by more than one order of magnitude, which is explained with the reduction of surface area by the nanopore membrane and the related more effective hemispherical diffusion pattern. PMID:19067579

  11. Integration of isolated cell membrane patches in nanomachined apertures for single ion channel recording

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niels, Fertig; Behrends, Jan; Blick, Robert

    2001-03-01

    We apply nanostructuring techniques to machine apertures in semiconductor materials with the aim of single channel recording of ion channels in cell membranes. This approach will overcome many limitations of the classical patch-clamp technique. The integration of nanostructured devices 'on-chip' promises novel types of experiments on single ion channels. We investigate the microscopic contact of a cell/semiconductor hybrid and demonstrate single channel recording.

  12. The Monte-Carlo Simulation of the Permeability of K Ion Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    An, Hai-Long; Zhan, Yong; Liu, Jin-Wei; Zhang, Su-Hua; Zhao, Tong-Jun

    In this paper, by introducing the collision model of the K ion channel, the maximum value of ions inward the channel per second, the average velocity of ions in the channels and the average time of every ion passing through the channel are obtained. Moreover they are reconciled with the experimental data. Base on the experimental data, the empiristic potential function is deduced. With the Monte-Carlo simulation, the curve of average velocity versus time and average displacement versus time are calculated by resolving the over-damping Langevin equation with Gaussian-white noise. They are according with the experimental dada well.

  13. ModFossa: A library for modeling ion channels using Python.

    PubMed

    Ferneyhough, Gareth B; Thibealut, Corey M; Dascalu, Sergiu M; Harris, Frederick C

    2016-06-01

    The creation and simulation of ion channel models using continuous-time Markov processes is a powerful and well-used tool in the field of electrophysiology and ion channel research. While several software packages exist for the purpose of ion channel modeling, most are GUI based, and none are available as a Python library. In an attempt to provide an easy-to-use, yet powerful Markov model-based ion channel simulator, we have developed ModFossa, a Python library supporting easy model creation and stimulus definition, complete with a fast numerical solver, and attractive vector graphics plotting. PMID:26932271

  14. Multi-ion conduction bands in a simple model of calcium ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaufman, I.; Luchinsky, D. G.; Tindjong, R.; McClintock, P. V. E.; Eisenberg, R. S.

    2013-04-01

    We report self-consistent Brownian dynamics simulations of a simple electrostatic model of the selectivity filters (SF) of calcium ion channels. They reveal regular structure in the conductance and selectivity as functions of the fixed negative charge Qf at the SF. With increasing Qf, there are distinct regions of high conductance (conduction bands) M0, M1, M2 separated by regions of almost zero-conductance (stop-bands). Two of these conduction bands, M1 and M2, are related to the saturated calcium occupancies of P = 1 and P = 2, respectively and demonstrate self-sustained conductivity. Despite the model's limitations, its M1 and M2 bands show high calcium selectivity and prominent anomalous mole fraction effects and can be identified with the L-type and RyR calcium channels. The non-selective band M0 can be identified with a non-selective cation channel, or with OmpF porin.

  15. Multi-ion free energy landscapes underscore the microscopic mechanism of ion selectivity in the KcsA channel

    PubMed Central

    Medovoy, David; Perozo, Eduardo; Roux, Benoît

    2016-01-01

    Potassium (K+) channels are transmembrane proteins that passively and selectively allow K+ ions to flow through them, after opening in response to an external stimulus. One of the most critical functional aspects of their function is their ability to remain very selective for K+ over Na+ while allowing high-throughput ion conduction at a rate close to the diffusion limit. Classically, it is assumed that the free energy difference between K+ and Na+ in the pore relative to the bulk solution is the critical quantity at the origin of selectivity. This is the thermodynamic view of ion selectivity. An alternative view assumes that kinetic factor play the dominant role. Recent results from a number of studies have also highlighted the great importance of the multi-ion single file on the selectivity of K+ channels. The data indicate that having multiple K+ ions bound simultaneously is required for selective K+ conduction, and that a reduction in the number of bound K+ ions destroys the multi-ion selectivity mechanism utilized by K+ channels. In the present study, multi-ion potential of mean force molecular dynamics computations are carried out to clarify the mechanism of ion selectivity in the KcsA channel. The computations show that the multi-ion character of the permeation process is a critical element for establishing the selective ion conductivity through K+-channels. PMID:26896693

  16. Reactive derivatives of gramicidin enable light- and ion-modulated ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macrae, Michael X.; Blake, Steven; Mayer, Thomas; Mayer, Michael; Yang, Jerry

    2009-08-01

    Detection of chemical processes on a single molecule scale is the ultimate goal of sensitive analytical assays. We have explored methods to detect chemical analytes in solution using synthetic derivatives of gramicidin A (gA). We exploited the functional properties of an ion channel-forming peptideg--gA--to report changes in the local environment near the opening of these semi-synthetic nanopores upon exposure to specific external stimuli. These peptide-based nanosensors detect reaction-induced changes in the chemical or physical properties of functional groups presented at the opening of the pore. This paper discusses the development of gA-based sensors for detecting external factors such as metal ions in solution or for detecting specific wavelengths of light. We propose that gA-based ion channel sensors offer tremendous potential for ultra sensitive functional detection since a single chemical modification of each individual sensing element can lead to readily detectable changes in channel conductance.

  17. Noise and stochastic resonance in voltage-gated ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Adair, Robert K.

    2003-01-01

    Using Monte Carlo techniques, I calculate the effects of internally generated noise on information transfer through the passage of action potential spikes along unmyelinated axons in a simple nervous system. I take the Hodgkin–Huxley (HH) description of Na and K channels in squid giant axons as the basis of the calculations and find that most signal transmission noise is generated by fluctuations in the channel open and closed populations. To bring the model closer to conventional descriptions in terms of thermal noise energy, kT, and to determine gating currents, I express the HH equations in the form of simple relations from statistical mechanics where the states are separated by a Gibbs energy that is modified by the action of the transmembrane potential on dipole moments held by the domains. Using the HH equations, I find that the output response (in the probability of action potential spikes) from small input potential pulses across the cell membrane is increased by added noise but falls off when the input noise becomes large, as in stochastic resonance models. That output noise response is sharply reduced by a small increase in the membrane polarization potential or a moderate increase in the channel densities. Because any reduction of noise incurs metabolic and developmental costs to an animal, the natural noise level is probably optimal and any increase in noise is likely to be harmful. Although these results are specific to signal transmission in unmyelinated axons, I suggest that the conclusions are likely to be general. PMID:14506291

  18. Two-Photon Scanning Photochemical Microscopy: Mapping Ligand-Gated Ion Channel Distributions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Denk, Winfried

    1994-07-01

    The locations and densities of ionotropic membrane receptors, which are responsible for receiving synaptic transmission throughout the nervous system, are of prime importance in understanding the function of neural circuits. It is shown that the highly localized liberation of "caged" neurotransmitters by two-photon absorption-mediated photoactivation can be used in conjunction with recording the induced whole-cell current to determine the distribution of ligand-gated ion channels. The technique is potentially sensitive enough to detect individual channels with diffraction-limited spatial resolution. Images of the distribution of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors on cultured BC3H1 cells were obtained using a photoactivatable precursor of the nicotinic agonist carbamoylcholine.

  19. Asymmetric ion transport through ion-channel-mimetic solid-state nanopores.

    PubMed

    Guo, Wei; Tian, Ye; Jiang, Lei

    2013-12-17

    Both scientists and engineers are interested in the design and fabrication of synthetic nanofluidic architectures that mimic the gating functions of biological ion channels. The effort to build such structures requires interdisciplinary efforts at the intersection of chemistry, materials science, and nanotechnology. Biological ion channels and synthetic nanofluidic devices have some structural and chemical similarities, and therefore, they share some common features in regulating the traverse ionic flow. In the past decade, researchers have identified two asymmetric ion transport phenomena in synthetic nanofluidic structures, the rectified ionic current and the net diffusion current. The rectified ionic current is a diode-like current-voltage response that occurs when switching the voltage bias. This phenomenon indicates a preferential direction of transport in the nanofluidic system. The net diffusion current occurs as a direct product of charge selectivity and is generated from the asymmetric diffusion through charged nanofluidic channels. These new ion transport phenomena and the elaborate structures that occur in biology have inspired us to build functional nanofluidic devices for both fundamental research and practical applications. In this Account, we review our recent progress in the design and fabrication of biomimetic solid-state nanofluidic devices with asymmetric ion transport behavior. We demonstrate the origin of the rectified ionic current and the net diffusion current. We also identify several influential factors and discuss how to build these asymmetric features into nanofluidic systems by controlling (1) nanopore geometry, (2) surface charge distribution, (3) chemical composition, (4) channel wall wettability, (5) environmental pH, (6) electrolyte concentration gradient, and (7) ion mobility. In the case of the first four features, we build these asymmetric features directly into the nanofluidic structures. With the final three, we construct

  20. Ion energy distributions and densities in the plume of Enceladus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakai, Shotaro; Cravens, Thomas E.; Omidi, Nojan; Perry, Mark E.; Waite, J. Hunter

    2016-10-01

    Enceladus has a dynamic plume that is emitting gas, including water vapor, and dust. The gas is ionized by solar EUV radiation, charge exchange, and electron impact and extends throughout the inner magnetosphere of Saturn. The charge exchange collisions alter the plasma composition. Ice grains (dust) escape from the vicinity of Enceladus and form the E ring, including a portion that is negatively charged by the local plasma. The inner magnetosphere within 10 RS (Saturn radii) contains a complex mixture of plasma, neutral gas, and dust that links back to Enceladus. In this paper we investigate the energy distributions, ion species and densities of water group ions in the plume of Enceladus using test particle and Monte Carlo methods that include collisional processes such as charge exchange and ion-neutral chemical reactions. Ion observations from the Cassini Ion and Neutral Mass Spectrometer (INMS) for E07 are presented for the first time. We use the modeling results to interpret observations made by the Cassini Plasma Spectrometer (CAPS) and the INMS. The low energy ions, as observed by CAPS, appear to be affected by a vertical electric field (EZ=-10 μV/m) in the plume. The EZ field may be associated with the charged dust and/or the pressure gradient of plasma. The model results, along with the results of earlier models, show that H3O+ ions created by chemistry are predominant in the plume, which agrees with INMS and CAPS data, but the INMS count rate in the plume for the model is several times greater than the data, which we do not fully understand. This composition and the total ion count found in the plume agree with INMS and CAPS data. On the other hand, the Cassini Langmuir Probe measured a maximum plume ion density more than 30,000 cm-3, which is far larger than the maximum ion density from our model, 900 cm-3. The model results also demonstrate that most of the ions in the plume are from the external magnetospheric flow and are not generated by local

  1. Fe(2+) substrate transport through ferritin protein cage ion channels influences enzyme activity and biomineralization.

    PubMed

    Behera, Rabindra K; Torres, Rodrigo; Tosha, Takehiko; Bradley, Justin M; Goulding, Celia W; Theil, Elizabeth C

    2015-09-01

    Ferritins, complex protein nanocages, form internal iron-oxy minerals (Fe2O3·H2O), by moving cytoplasmic Fe(2+) through intracage ion channels to cage-embedded enzyme (2Fe(2+)/O2 oxidoreductase) sites where ferritin biomineralization is initiated. The products of ferritin enzyme activity are diferric oxy complexes that are mineral precursors. Conserved, carboxylate amino acid side chains of D127 from each of three cage subunits project into ferritin ion channels near the interior ion channel exits and, thus, could direct Fe(2+) movement to the internal enzyme sites. Ferritin D127E was designed and analyzed to probe properties of ion channel size and carboxylate crowding near the internal ion channel opening. Glu side chains are chemically equivalent to, but longer by one -CH2 than Asp, side chains. Ferritin D127E assembled into normal protein cages, but diferric peroxo formation (enzyme activity) was not observed, when measured at 650 nm (DFP λ max). The caged biomineral formation, measured at 350 nm in the middle of the broad, nonspecific Fe(3+)-O absorption band, was slower. Structural differences (protein X-ray crystallography), between ion channels in wild type and ferritin D127E, which correlate with the inhibition of ferritin D127E enzyme activity include: (1) narrower interior ion channel openings/pores; (2) increased numbers of ion channel protein-metal binding sites, and (3) a change in ion channel electrostatics due to carboxylate crowding. The contributions of ion channel size and structure to ferritin activity reflect metal ion transport in ion channels are precisely regulated both in ferritin protein nanocages and membranes of living cells.

  2. Fe2+ Substrate Transport through Ferritin Protein Cage Ion Channels Influences Enzyme Activity and Biomineralization

    PubMed Central

    Behera, Rabindra K.; Torres, Rodrigo; Tosha, Takehiko; Bradley, Justin M.; Goulding, Celia W.; Theil, Elizabeth C.

    2015-01-01

    Ferritins, complex protein nanocages, form internal iron-oxy minerals (Fe2O3.H2O), by moving cytoplasmic Fe2+ through intracage ion channels to cage-embedded enzyme (2Fe2+/O2 oxidoreductase) sites where ferritin biomineralization is initiated. The products of ferritin enzyme activity are diferric oxy complexes that are mineral precursors. Conserved, carboxylate amino acid side chains of D127 from each of three cage subunits project into ferritin ion channels near the interior ion channel exits and, thus, could direct Fe2+ movement to the internal enzyme sites. Ferritin D127E was designed and analyzed to probe properties of ion channel size and carboxylate crowding near the internal ion channel opening. Glu side chains are chemically equivalent to, but longer by one – CH2 than Asp, side chains. Ferritin D127E assembled into normal protein cages, but diferric peroxo formation (enzyme activity) was not observed, when measured at 650nm (DFP λmax). The caged biomineral formation, measured at 350 nm in the middle of the broad, nonspecific Fe3+-O absorption band, was slower. Structural differences (protein X-ray crystallography), between ion channels in wild type and ferritin D127E, which correlate with the inhibition of ferritin D127E enzyme activity include: 1. narrower interior ion channel openings/pores, 2. increased numbers of ion channel protein-metal binding sites, and 3. a change in ion channel electrostatics due to carboxylate crowding. The contributions of ion channel size and structure to ferritin activity reflect metal ion transport in ion channels are precisely regulated both in ferritin protein nanocages and membranes of living cells. PMID:26202907

  3. On the estimation of cooperativity in ion channel kinetics: activation free energy and kinetic mechanism of Shaker K+ channel.

    PubMed

    Banerjee, Kinshuk; Das, Biswajit; Gangopadhyay, Gautam

    2013-04-28

    In this paper, we have explored generic criteria of cooperative behavior in ion channel kinetics treating it on the same footing with multistate receptor-ligand binding in a compact theoretical framework. We have shown that the characterization of cooperativity of ion channels in terms of the Hill coefficient violates the standard Hill criteria defined for allosteric cooperativity of ligand binding. To resolve the issue, an alternative measure of cooperativity is proposed here in terms of the cooperativity index that sets a unified criteria for both the systems. More importantly, for ion channel this index can be very useful to describe the cooperative kinetics as it can be readily determined from the experimentally measured ionic current combined with theoretical modelling. We have analyzed the correlation between the voltage value and slope of the voltage-activation curve at the half-activation point and consequently determined the standard free energy of activation of the ion channel using two well-established mechanisms of cooperativity, namely, Koshland-Nemethy-Filmer (KNF) and Monod-Wyman-Changeux (MWC) models. Comparison of the theoretical results for both the models with appropriate experimental data of mutational perturbation of Shaker K(+) channel supports the experimental fact that the KNF model is more suitable to describe the cooperative behavior of this class of ion channels, whereas the performance of the MWC model is unsatisfactory. We have also estimated the mechanistic performance through standard free energy of channel activation for both the models and proposed a possible functional disadvantage in the MWC scheme.

  4. Non-Michaelis-Menten kinetics model for conductance of low-conductance potassium ion channels.

    PubMed

    Tolokh, Igor S; Tolokh, Illya I; Cho, Hee Cheol; D'Avanzo, Nazzareno; Backx, Peter H; Goldman, Saul; Gray, C G

    2005-02-01

    A reduced kinetics model is proposed for ion permeation in low-conductance potassium ion channels with zero net electrical charge in the selectivity filter region. The selectivity filter is assumed to be the only conductance-determining part of the channel. Ion entry and exit rate constants depend on the occupancy of the filter due to ion-ion interactions. The corresponding rates are assumed slow relative to the rates of ion motion between binding sites inside the filter, allowing a reduction of the kinetics model of the filter by averaging the entry and exit rate constants over the states with a particular occupancy number. The reduced kinetics model for low-conductance channels is described by only three states and two sets of effective rate constants characterizing transitions between these states. An explicit expression for the channel conductance as a function of symmetrical external ion concentration is derived under the assumption that the average electrical mobility of ions in the selectivity filter region in a limited range of ion concentrations does not depend on these concentrations. The simplified conductance model is shown to provide a good description of the experimentally observed conductance-concentration curve for the low-conductance potassium channel Kir2.1, and also predicts the mean occupancy of the selectivity filter of this channel. We find that at physiological external ion concentrations this occupancy is much lower than the value of two ions observed for one of the high-conductance potassium channels, KcsA.

  5. Mechanisms and distribution of ion channels in retinal ganglion cells: using temperature as an independent variable.

    PubMed

    Fohlmeister, Jürgen F; Cohen, Ethan D; Newman, Eric A

    2010-03-01

    Trains of action potentials of rat and cat retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) were recorded intracellularly across a temperature range of 7-37 degrees C. Phase plots of the experimental impulse trains were precision fit using multicompartment simulations of anatomically reconstructed rat and cat RGCs. Action potential excitation was simulated with a "Five-channel model" [Na, K(delayed rectifier), Ca, K(A), and K(Ca-activated) channels] and the nonspace-clamped condition of the whole cell recording was exploited to determine the channels' distribution on the dendrites, soma, and proximal axon. At each temperature, optimal phase-plot fits for RGCs occurred with the same unique channel distribution. The "waveform" of the electrotonic current was found to be temperature dependent, which reflected the shape changes in the experimental action potentials and confirmed the channel distributions. The distributions are cell-type specific and adequate for soma and dendritic excitation with a safety margin. The highest Na-channel density was found on an axonal segment some 50-130 microm distal to the soma, as determined from the temperature-dependent "initial segment-somadendritic (IS-SD) break." The voltage dependence of the gating rate constants remains invariant between 7 and 23 degrees C and between 30 and 37 degrees C, but undergoes a transition between 23 and 30 degrees C. Both gating-kinetic and ion-permeability Q10s remain virtually constant between 23 and 37 degrees C (kinetic Q10s = 1.9-1.95; permeability Q10s = 1.49-1.64). The Q10s systematically increase for T <23 degrees C (kinetic Q10 = 8 at T = 8 degrees C). The Na channels were consistently "sleepy" (non-Arrhenius) for T <8 degrees C, with a loss of spiking for T <7 degrees C.

  6. A New Poisson-Nernst-Planck Model with Ion-Water Interactions for Charge Transport in Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Chen, Duan

    2016-08-01

    In this work, we propose a new Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) model with ion-water interactions for biological charge transport in ion channels. Due to narrow geometries of these membrane proteins, ion-water interaction is critical for both dielectric property of water molecules in channel pore and transport dynamics of mobile ions. We model the ion-water interaction energy based on realistic experimental observations in an efficient mean-field approach. Variation of a total energy functional of the biological system yields a new PNP-type continuum model. Numerical simulations show that the proposed model with ion-water interaction energy has the new features that quantitatively describe dielectric properties of water molecules in narrow pores and are possible to model the selectivity of some ion channels.

  7. A New Poisson-Nernst-Planck Model with Ion-Water Interactions for Charge Transport in Ion Channels.

    PubMed

    Chen, Duan

    2016-08-01

    In this work, we propose a new Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) model with ion-water interactions for biological charge transport in ion channels. Due to narrow geometries of these membrane proteins, ion-water interaction is critical for both dielectric property of water molecules in channel pore and transport dynamics of mobile ions. We model the ion-water interaction energy based on realistic experimental observations in an efficient mean-field approach. Variation of a total energy functional of the biological system yields a new PNP-type continuum model. Numerical simulations show that the proposed model with ion-water interaction energy has the new features that quantitatively describe dielectric properties of water molecules in narrow pores and are possible to model the selectivity of some ion channels. PMID:27480225

  8. Investigation of Semiconductor Surface Structure by Transmission Ion Channeling.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyman, Paul Francis

    The primary thrust of this dissertation is the investigation of the composition and structure of two important surface systems on Si, and the study of how this structure evolves under the influence of ion bombardment or film growth. I have studied the initial stages of oxidation of Si immediately following removal of a surface oxide by an HF etch. I have also studied the structure of Ge deposited on clean Si(100) at low temperatures. These systems are of considerable technological interest, but were chosen because they naturally pose fundamental questions regarding physical and chemical processes at surfaces. In the study of the oxidation of Si, I have focused on the influence of the bombarding ion beam in altering the structure and composition of the surface layer. Thus, the system then provides a natural vehicle to study ion-induced chemistry. In the study of low-temperature growth of Ge, I have focused on the structure of the Ge layer and the evolution of that structure upon further deposition or upon heating. This simple system is a model one for observing strained semiconductor heteroepitaxial growth. The primary probe for these studies was transmission channeling of MeV ions. The sensitivity of this technique to correlations between the substrate and an overlayer allowed us to make the following observations. The O, Si and H bound in the thin oxide formed after an HF etch and H_2O rinse occupy preferred positions with respect to the Si matrix. Upon ion bombardment, the O further reacts with the Si (the reaction proceeds linearly with the ion fluence) and the portion of the H that is uncorrelated to the substrate is preferentially desorbed. For the case of Ge growth on Si(100)-(2 x 1) at room temperature, a substantial fraction of the Ge films is strained to occupy sites having the lattice constant of the Si substrate (pseudomorphic growth). A model for film growth is proposed in which pseudomorphic domains constitute roughly half of the Ge films up to a

  9. The Ion Channel TRPA1 Is Required for Chronic Itch

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Sarah R.; Nelson, Aislyn M.; Batia, Lyn; Morita, Takeshi; Estandian, Daniel; Owens, David M.; Lumpkin, Ellen A.; Bautista, Diana M.

    2013-01-01

    Chronic itch is a debilitating condition that affects one in 10 people. Little is known about the molecules that mediate chronic itch in primary sensory neurons and skin. We demonstrate that the ion channel TRPA1 is required for chronic itch. Using a mouse model of chronic itch, we show that scratching evoked by impaired skin barrier is abolished in TRPA1-deficient animals. This model recapitulates many of the pathophysiological hallmarks of chronic itch that are observed in prevalent human diseases such as atopic dermatitis and psoriasis, including robust scratching, extensive epidermal hyperplasia, and dramatic changes in gene expression in sensory neurons and skin. Remarkably, TRPA1 is required for both transduction of chronic itch signals to the CNS and for the dramatic skin changes triggered by dry-skin-evoked itch and scratching. These data suggest that TRPA1 regulates both itch transduction and pathophysiological changes in the skin that promote chronic itch. PMID:23719797

  10. Sensitizing the Slit Diaphragm with TRPC6 ion channels.

    PubMed

    Möller, Clemens C; Flesche, Jan; Reiser, Jochen

    2009-05-01

    Physiologic permeability of the glomerular capillary depends on the normal structure of podocyte foot processes forming a functioning slit diaphragm in between. Mutations in several podocyte genes as well as specific molecular pathways have been identified as the cause for progressive kidney failure with urinary protein loss. Podocyte injury is a hallmark of glomerular disease, which is generally displayed by the rearrangement of the podocyte slit diaphragm and the actin cytoskeleton. Recent studies demonstrate a unique role for the Ca(2+)-permeable ion channel protein TRPC6 as a regulator of glomerular ultrafiltration. In both genetic and acquired forms of proteinuric kidney disease, dysregulation of podocyte TRPC6 plays a pathogenic role. This article illustrates how recent findings add to emerging concepts in podocyte biology, particularly mechanosensation and signaling at the slit diaphragm.

  11. Ion selectivity from local configurations of ligands in solutions and ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Asthagiri, D.; Dixit, P.D.; Merchant, S.; Paulaitis, M.E.; Pratt, L.R.; Rempe, S.B.; Varma, S.

    2010-01-01

    Probabilities of numbers of ligands proximal to an ion lead to simple, general formulae for the free energy of ion selectivity between different media. That free energy does not depend on the definition of an inner shell for ligand-counting, but other quantities of mechanistic interest do. If analysis is restricted to a specific coordination number, then two distinct probabilities are required to obtain the free energy in addition. The normalizations of those distributions produce partition function formulae for the free energy. Quasi-chemical theory introduces concepts of chemical equilibrium, then seeks the probability that is simplest to estimate, that of the most probable coordination number. Quasi-chemical theory establishes the utility of distributions of ligand-number, and sharpens our understanding of quasi-chemical calculations based on electronic structure methods. This development identifies contributions with clear physical interpretations, and shows that evaluation of those contributions can establish a mechanistic understanding of the selectivity in ion channels. PMID:23750043

  12. Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi theory for modeling biological ion channels

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Jinn-Liang; Eisenberg, Bob

    2014-12-14

    A Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi (PNPF) theory is developed for studying ionic transport through biological ion channels. Our goal is to deal with the finite size of particle using a Fermi like distribution without calculating the forces between the particles, because they are both expensive and tricky to compute. We include the steric effect of ions and water molecules with nonuniform sizes and interstitial voids, the correlation effect of crowded ions with different valences, and the screening effect of water molecules in an inhomogeneous aqueous electrolyte. Including the finite volume of water and the voids between particles is an important new part of the theory presented here. Fermi like distributions of all particle species are derived from the volume exclusion of classical particles. Volume exclusion and the resulting saturation phenomena are especially important to describe the binding and permeation mechanisms of ions in a narrow channel pore. The Gibbs free energy of the Fermi distribution reduces to that of a Boltzmann distribution when these effects are not considered. The classical Gibbs entropy is extended to a new entropy form — called Gibbs-Fermi entropy — that describes mixing configurations of all finite size particles and voids in a thermodynamic system where microstates do not have equal probabilities. The PNPF model describes the dynamic flow of ions, water molecules, as well as voids with electric fields and protein charges. The model also provides a quantitative mean-field description of the charge/space competition mechanism of particles within the highly charged and crowded channel pore. The PNPF results are in good accord with experimental currents recorded in a 10{sup 8}-fold range of Ca{sup 2+} concentrations. The results illustrate the anomalous mole fraction effect, a signature of L-type calcium channels. Moreover, numerical results concerning water density, dielectric permittivity, void volume, and steric energy provide useful

  13. Dimensions and ion selectivity of recombinant AMPA and kainate receptor channels and their dependence on Q/R site residues.

    PubMed Central

    Burnashev, N; Villarroel, A; Sakmann, B

    1996-01-01

    1. Recombinant alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate receptor (AMPAR) subunits (GluR-A or GluR-B) and kainate receptor (KAR) subunit (GluR-6) in their unedited (Q)- and edited (R)-forms were expressed in HEK 293 cells. To estimate the dimensions of the narrow portion of these channels, biionic reversal potentials for organic cations of different mean diameters were determined with Cs+ as the internal reference ion. 2. Homomeric channels assembled from Q-form subunits were cation selective. The relation between the relative permeability and the mean size of different organic cations suggests that the diameter of the narrow portion of Q-form channels is approximately 0.78 nm for AMPAR and 0.75 nm for KAR channels. 3. Homomeric channels assembled from R-form subunits were permeant for anions and cations. When probed with CsC1 gradients the relative chloride permeability (PC1/PCs) was estimated as 0.14 for GluR-B(R) and 0.74 for GluR-6(R)-subunit channels. The permeability versus mean size relation for large cations measured with the weakly permeant F- as anion, indicates that for the R-form KAR channels the apparent pore diameter is close to 0.76 nm. 4. Heteromeric AMPAR and KAR channels co-assembled from Q- and R-form subunits were cation selective. The diameter of the narrow portion of these channels is estimated to be in the range between 0.70 and 0.74 nm. 5. The results indicated that the diameters of the narrow portion of AMPAR and KAR channels of different subunit composition and of widely different ion selectivity are comparable. Therefore, the differences in the anion versus cation selectivity, in Ca2+ permeability and in channel conductance are likely to be determined by the difference in charge density of the channel. PMID:8910205

  14. Targeting ion channels for the treatment of gastrointestinal motility disorders

    PubMed Central

    Beyder, Arthur

    2012-01-01

    Gastrointestinal (GI) functional and motility disorders are highly prevalent and responsible for long-term morbidity and sometimes mortality in the affected patients. It is estimated that one in three persons has a GI functional or motility disorder. However, diagnosis and treatment of these widespread conditions remains challenging. This partly stems from the multisystem pathophysiology, including processing abnormalities in the central and peripheral (enteric) nervous systems and motor dysfunction in the GI wall. Interstitial cells of Cajal (ICCs) are central to the generation and propagation of the cyclical electrical activity and smooth muscle cells (SMCs) are responsible for electromechanical coupling. In these and other excitable cells voltage-sensitive ion channels (VSICs) are the main molecular units that generate and regulate electrical activity. Thus, VSICs are potential targets for intervention in GI motility disorders. Research in this area has flourished with advances in the experimental methods in molecular and structural biology and electrophysiology. However, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms responsible for the complex and variable electrical behavior of ICCs and SMCs remains incomplete. In this review, we focus on the slow waves and action potentials in ICCs and SMCs. We describe the constituent VSICs, which include voltage-gated sodium (NaV), calcium (CaV), potassium (KV, KCa), chloride (Cl–) and nonselective ion channels (transient receptor potentials [TRPs]). VSICs have significant structural homology and common functional mechanisms. We outline the approaches and limitations and provide examples of targeting VSICs at the pores, voltage sensors and alternatively spliced sites. Rational drug design can come from an integrated view of the structure and mechanisms of gating and activation by voltage or mechanical stress. PMID:22282704

  15. Ligand action on sodium, potassium, and calcium channels: role of permeant ions.

    PubMed

    Zhorov, Boris S; Tikhonov, Denis B

    2013-03-01

    Ion channels are targets for many naturally occurring toxins and small-molecule drugs. Despite great progress in the X-ray crystallography of ion channels, we still do not have a complete understanding of the atomistic mechanisms of channel modulation by ligands. In particular, the importance of the simultaneous interaction of permeant ions with the ligand and the channel protein has not been the focus of much attention. Considering these interactions often allows one to rationalize the highly diverse experimental data within the framework of relatively simple structural models. This has been illustrated in earlier studies on the action of local anesthetics, sodium channel activators, as well as blockers of potassium and calcium channels. Here, we discuss the available data with a view to understanding the use-, voltage-, and current carrying cation-dependence of the ligand action, paradoxes in structure--activity relationships, and effects of mutations in these ion channels.

  16. High density, optically corrected, micro-channel cooled, v-groove monolithic laser diode array

    DOEpatents

    Freitas, B.L.

    1998-10-27

    An optically corrected, micro-channel cooled, high density laser diode array achieves stacking pitches to 33 bars/cm by mounting laser diodes into V-shaped grooves. This design will deliver > 4kW/cm{sup 2} of directional pulsed laser power. This optically corrected, micro-channel cooled, high density laser is usable in all solid state laser systems which require efficient, directional, narrow bandwidth, high optical power density pump sources. 13 figs.

  17. High density, optically corrected, micro-channel cooled, v-groove monolithic laser diode array

    DOEpatents

    Freitas, Barry L.

    1998-01-01

    An optically corrected, micro-channel cooled, high density laser diode array achieves stacking pitches to 33 bars/cm by mounting laser diodes into V-shaped grooves. This design will deliver>4kW/cm2 of directional pulsed laser power. This optically corrected, micro-channel cooled, high density laser is usable in all solid state laser systems which require efficient, directional, narrow bandwidth, high optical power density pump sources.

  18. Lipid Agonism, The PIP2 Paradigm of Ligand-Gated Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Scott B.

    2015-01-01

    The past decade, membrane signaling lipids emerged as major regulators of ion channel function. However, the molecular nature of lipid binding to ion channels remained poorly described due to a lack of structural information and assays to quantify and measure lipid binding in a membrane. How does a lipid-ligand bind to a membrane protein in the plasma membrane and what does it mean for a lipid to activate or regulate an ion channel? How does lipid-binding compare to activation by soluble neurotransmitter? And how does the cell control lipid agonism? This review focuses on lipids and their interactions with membrane proteins, in particular ion channels. I discuss the intersection of membrane lipid biology and ion channel biophysics. A picture emerges of membrane lipids as bona fide agonists of ligand-gated ion channels. These freely diffusing signals reside in the plasma membrane, bind to the transmembrane domain of protein, and cause a conformational change that allosterically gates an ion channel. The system employs a catalog of diverse signaling lipids ultimately controlled by lipid enzymes and raft localization. I draw upon pharmacology, recent protein structure, and electrophysiological data to understand lipid regulation and define inward rectifying potassium channels (Kir) as a new class of PIP2 lipid-gated ion channels. PMID:25633344

  19. Parameterization for In-Silico Modeling of Ion Channel Interactions with Drugs.

    PubMed

    Moreno, Jonathan D; Lewis, Timothy J; Clancy, Colleen E

    2016-01-01

    Since the first Hodgkin and Huxley ion channel model was described in the 1950s, there has been an explosion in mathematical models to describe ion channel function. As experimental data has become richer, models have concomitantly been improved to better represent ion channel kinetic processes, although these improvements have generally resulted in more model complexity and an increase in the number of parameters necessary to populate the models. Models have also been developed to explicitly model drug interactions with ion channels. Recent models of drug-channel interactions account for the discrete kinetics of drug interaction with distinct ion channel state conformations, as it has become clear that such interactions underlie complex emergent kinetics such as use-dependent block. Here, we describe an approach for developing a model for ion channel drug interactions. The method describes the process of extracting rate constants from experimental electrophysiological function data to use as initial conditions for the model parameters. We then describe implementation of a parameter optimization method to refine the model rate constants describing ion channel drug kinetics. The algorithm takes advantage of readily available parallel computing tools to speed up the optimization. Finally, we describe some potential applications of the platform including the potential for gaining fundamental mechanistic insights into ion channel function and applications to in silico drug screening and development. PMID:26963710

  20. Parameterization for In-Silico Modeling of Ion Channel Interactions with Drugs

    PubMed Central

    Moreno, Jonathan D.; Lewis, Timothy J.; Clancy, Colleen E.

    2016-01-01

    Since the first Hodgkin and Huxley ion channel model was described in the 1950s, there has been an explosion in mathematical models to describe ion channel function. As experimental data has become richer, models have concomitantly been improved to better represent ion channel kinetic processes, although these improvements have generally resulted in more model complexity and an increase in the number of parameters necessary to populate the models. Models have also been developed to explicitly model drug interactions with ion channels. Recent models of drug-channel interactions account for the discrete kinetics of drug interaction with distinct ion channel state conformations, as it has become clear that such interactions underlie complex emergent kinetics such as use-dependent block. Here, we describe an approach for developing a model for ion channel drug interactions. The method describes the process of extracting rate constants from experimental electrophysiological function data to use as initial conditions for the model parameters. We then describe implementation of a parameter optimization method to refine the model rate constants describing ion channel drug kinetics. The algorithm takes advantage of readily available parallel computing tools to speed up the optimization. Finally, we describe some potential applications of the platform including the potential for gaining fundamental mechanistic insights into ion channel function and applications to in silico drug screening and development. PMID:26963710

  1. Effect of entrance channel on dynamics of heavy ions collision

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naderi, D.

    2016-01-01

    A combined dynamical model using concept of dinuclear systems (DNS) and one-dimensional (1D) Langevin equations was applied to investigate the effect of entrance channel on dynamics of heavy ions collision. The 30Si+170Er, 16O+184W and 19F+181Ta reactions which formed the compound nucleus 200Pb have been considered to study this effect. We studied these reactions dynamically and calculated the ratio of evaporation residue cross-section to fusion cross-section (σER/σFus) as a tool for investigation of entrance channel effect. Results of combined model are compared with available experimental data and results of 1D Langevin equations. Obtained results based on combined model are in better agreement with experimental data in comparison with results of Langevin equations. We concluded for 30Si+170Er and 19F+181Ta reactions the results of combined model that support the quasi-fission process are different relative to Langevin dynamical approach, whereas for 16O+184W system the two models give similar results.

  2. Mutant SOD1 forms ion channel: implications for ALS pathophysiology.

    PubMed

    Allen, Michael J; Lacroix, Jérome J; Ramachandran, Srinivasan; Capone, Ricardo; Whitlock, Jenny L; Ghadge, Ghanashyam D; Arnsdorf, Morton F; Roos, Raymond P; Lal, Ratnesh

    2012-03-01

    Point mutations in the gene encoding copper-zinc superoxide dismutase (SOD1) impart a gain-of-function to this protein that underlies 20-25% of all familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (FALS) cases. However, the specific mechanism of mutant SOD1 toxicity has remained elusive. Using the complementary techniques of atomic force microscopy (AFM), electrophysiology, and cell and molecular biology, here we examine the structure and activity of A4VSOD1, a mutant SOD1. AFM of A4VSOD1 reconstituted in lipid membrane shows discrete tetrameric pore-like structure with outer and inner diameters 12.2 and 3.0nm respectively. Electrophysiological recordings show distinct ionic conductances across bilayer for A4VSOD1 and none for wildtype SOD1. Mouse neuroblastoma cells exposed to A4VSOD1 undergo membrane depolarization and increases in intracellular calcium. These results provide compelling new evidence that a mutant SOD1 is capable of disrupting cellular homeostasis via an unregulated ion channel mechanism. Such a "toxic channel" mechanism presents a new therapeutic direction for ALS research. PMID:21930207

  3. Biophysics, pathophysiology, and pharmacology of ion channel gating pores

    PubMed Central

    Moreau, Adrien; Gosselin-Badaroudine, Pascal; Chahine, Mohamed

    2014-01-01

    Voltage sensor domains (VSDs) are a feature of voltage gated ion channels (VGICs) and voltage sensitive proteins. They are composed of four transmembrane (TM) segments (S1–S4). Currents leaking through VSDs are called omega or gating pore currents. Gating pores are caused by mutations of the highly conserved positively charged amino acids in the S4 segment that disrupt interactions between the S4 segment and the gating charge transfer center (GCTC). The GCTC separates the intracellular and extracellular water crevices. The disruption of S4–GCTC interactions allows these crevices to communicate and create a fast activating and non-inactivating alternative cation-selective permeation pathway of low conductance, or a gating pore. Gating pore currents have recently been shown to cause periodic paralysis phenotypes. There is also increasing evidence that gating pores are linked to several other familial diseases. For example, gating pores in Nav1.5 and Kv7.2 channels may underlie mixed arrhythmias associated with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) phenotypes and peripheral nerve hyperexcitability (PNH), respectively. There is little evidence for the existence of gating pore blockers. Moreover, it is known that a number of toxins bind to the VSD of a specific domain of Na+ channels. These toxins may thus modulate gating pore currents. This focus on the VSD motif opens up a new area of research centered on developing molecules to treat a number of cell excitability disorders such as epilepsy, cardiac arrhythmias, and pain. The purpose of the present review is to summarize existing knowledge of the pathophysiology, biophysics, and pharmacology of gating pore currents and to serve as a guide for future studies aimed at improving our understanding of gating pores and their pathophysiological roles. PMID:24772081

  4. Electrostatic lens to focus an ion beam to uniform density

    DOEpatents

    Johnson, Cleland H.

    1977-01-11

    A focusing lens for an ion beam having a gaussian or similar density profile is provided. The lens is constructed to provide an inner zero electrostatic field, and an outer electrostatic field such that ions entering this outer field are deflected by an amount that is a function of their distance from the edge of the inner field. The result is a beam that focuses to a uniform density in a manner analogous to that of an optical ring lens. In one embodiment, a conically-shaped network of fine wires is enclosed within a cylindrical anode. The wire net together with the anode produces a voltage field that re-directs the outer particles of the beam while the axial particles pass undeflected through a zero field inside the wire net. The result is a focused beam having a uniform intensity over a given target area and at a given distance from the lens.

  5. Ion channel genes and human neurological disease: Recent progress, prospects, and challenges

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, Edward C.; Jan, Lily Yeh

    1999-01-01

    What do epilepsy, migraine headache, deafness, episodic ataxia, periodic paralysis, malignant hyperthermia, and generalized myotonia have in common? These human neurological disorders can be caused by mutations in genes for ion channels. Many of the channel diseases are “paroxysmal disorders” whose principal symptoms occur intermittently in individuals who otherwise may be healthy and active. Some of the ion channels that cause human neurological disease are old acquaintances previously cloned and extensively studied by channel specialists. In other cases, however, disease-gene hunts have led the way to the identification of new channel genes. Progress in the study of ion channels has made it possible to analyze the effects of human neurological disease-causing channel mutations at the level of the single channel, the subcellular domain, the neuronal network, and the behaving organism. PMID:10220366

  6. Diagnostics for ion beam driven high energy density physics experiments

    SciTech Connect

    Bieniosek, F. M.; Henestroza, E.; Lidia, S.; Ni, P. A.

    2010-10-15

    Intense beams of heavy ions are capable of heating volumetric samples of matter to high energy density. Experiments are performed on the resulting warm dense matter (WDM) at the NDCX-I ion beam accelerator. The 0.3 MeV, 30 mA K{sup +} beam from NDCX-I heats foil targets by combined longitudinal and transverse neutralized drift compression of the ion beam. Both the compressed and uncompressed parts of the NDCX-I beam heat targets. The exotic state of matter (WDM) in these experiments requires specialized diagnostic techniques. We have developed a target chamber and fielded target diagnostics including a fast multichannel optical pyrometer, optical streak camera, laser Doppler-shift interferometer (Velocity Interferometer System for Any Reflector), beam transmission diagnostics, and high-speed gated cameras. We also present plans and opportunities for diagnostic development and a new target chamber for NDCX-II.

  7. Diagnostics for ion beam driven high energy density physics experiments.

    PubMed

    Bieniosek, F M; Henestroza, E; Lidia, S; Ni, P A

    2010-10-01

    Intense beams of heavy ions are capable of heating volumetric samples of matter to high energy density. Experiments are performed on the resulting warm dense matter (WDM) at the NDCX-I ion beam accelerator. The 0.3 MeV, 30 mA K(+) beam from NDCX-I heats foil targets by combined longitudinal and transverse neutralized drift compression of the ion beam. Both the compressed and uncompressed parts of the NDCX-I beam heat targets. The exotic state of matter (WDM) in these experiments requires specialized diagnostic techniques. We have developed a target chamber and fielded target diagnostics including a fast multichannel optical pyrometer, optical streak camera, laser Doppler-shift interferometer (Velocity Interferometer System for Any Reflector), beam transmission diagnostics, and high-speed gated cameras. We also present plans and opportunities for diagnostic development and a new target chamber for NDCX-II.

  8. Diagnostics for ion beam driven high energy density physics experiments.

    PubMed

    Bieniosek, F M; Henestroza, E; Lidia, S; Ni, P A

    2010-10-01

    Intense beams of heavy ions are capable of heating volumetric samples of matter to high energy density. Experiments are performed on the resulting warm dense matter (WDM) at the NDCX-I ion beam accelerator. The 0.3 MeV, 30 mA K(+) beam from NDCX-I heats foil targets by combined longitudinal and transverse neutralized drift compression of the ion beam. Both the compressed and uncompressed parts of the NDCX-I beam heat targets. The exotic state of matter (WDM) in these experiments requires specialized diagnostic techniques. We have developed a target chamber and fielded target diagnostics including a fast multichannel optical pyrometer, optical streak camera, laser Doppler-shift interferometer (Velocity Interferometer System for Any Reflector), beam transmission diagnostics, and high-speed gated cameras. We also present plans and opportunities for diagnostic development and a new target chamber for NDCX-II. PMID:21033977

  9. Constitutive Endocytic Recycling and Protein Kinase C-mediated Lysosomal Degradation Control KATP Channel Surface Density*

    PubMed Central

    Manna, Paul T.; Smith, Andrew J.; Taneja, Tarvinder K.; Howell, Gareth J.; Lippiat, Jonathan D.; Sivaprasadarao, Asipu

    2010-01-01

    Pancreatic ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels control insulin secretion by coupling the excitability of the pancreatic β-cell to glucose metabolism. Little is currently known about how the plasma membrane density of these channels is regulated. We therefore set out to examine in detail the endocytosis and recycling of these channels and how these processes are regulated. To achieve this goal, we expressed KATP channels bearing an extracellular hemagglutinin epitope in human embryonic kidney cells and followed their fate along the endocytic pathway. Our results show that KATP channels undergo multiple rounds of endocytosis and recycling. Further, activation of protein kinase C (PKC) with phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate significantly decreases KATP channel surface density by reducing channel recycling and diverting the channel to lysosomal degradation. These findings were recapitulated in the model pancreatic β-cell line INS1e, where activation of PKC leads to a decrease in the surface density of native KATP channels. Because sorting of internalized channels between lysosomal and recycling pathways could have opposite effects on the excitability of pancreatic β-cells, we propose that PKC-regulated KATP channel trafficking may play a role in the regulation of insulin secretion. PMID:20026601

  10. The nature of ion and water barrier crossings in a simulated ion channel.

    PubMed Central

    Chiu, S. W.; Novotny, J. A.; Jakobsson, E.

    1993-01-01

    state of matter" characteristic of the channel contents appears to have some properties typical of the solid and some typical of the liquid state. The magnitude of the local friction and nature of the ion solvation are similar to the liquid state, but the periodicities of structure, free energy, and dynamics are somewhat solid-like. The alignment of water dipoles in the channel bears some resemblance to the orientational ordering of a nematic liquid crystal, but unlike a nematic liquid crystal, the waters have a degree of translational order as well. Thus, the "channel state" is not adequately described by analogy to either the solid or liquid states or to liquid crystals but must be dealt with as its own characteristic type of condensed matter. PMID:7679301

  11. Acceleration of Ions from a near critical density gaseous target

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Helle, Michael; Gordon, Daniel; Kaganovich, Dmitri; Ting, Antonio

    2013-10-01

    Efficient acceleration of ions by means of high power laser radiation requires electron plasma densities at or in excess of the critical density. For optical wavelengths where most of the world's high intensity lasers operate, the critical density is nCRIT ~ 2*1021 cm-3. This value lies between gaseous and solid like densities making it difficult to obtain. In order to reach these densities a ``gas foil'' target has been developed at the Naval Research Laboratory. The target is created by igniting an optically driven hydrodynamic shock into the gas flow of a gas jet in vacuum. Experiments have shown that a laser-ignited shock is capable of producing <10 μm gradients, thicknesses ~ 100 μm, and peak densities >4 times ambient. 3D PIC simulations of the interaction of an intense laser pulse with this type of thin, near critical density target have shown characteristics of the recently purposed Magnetic Vortex Acceleration mechanism. This mechanism takes advantage of an inductive accelerating field at the rear of the target. This field is generated by the strong azimuthal magnetic field produced by electrons accelerating through the target. Simulations and preliminary experimental results using the TFL laser system at NRL will be discussed. This work is supported by the Department of Energy and the Naval Research Laboratory Base Program.

  12. Beyond ion-conduction: Channel-dependent and -independent roles of TRP channels during development and tissue homeostasis.

    PubMed

    Vrenken, Kirsten S; Jalink, Kees; van Leeuwen, Frank N; Middelbeek, Jeroen

    2016-06-01

    Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels comprise a family of cation channels implicated in a variety of cellular processes, including proliferation, cell migration and cell survival. As a consequence, members of this ion family play prominent roles during embryonic development, tissue maintenance and cancer progression. Although most TRP channels are non-selective, many cellular responses, mediated by TRP channels, appear to be calcium-dependent. In addition, there is mounting evidence for channel-independent roles for TRP channels. In this review, we will discuss how both these channel-dependent and -independent mechanisms affect cellular programs essential during embryonic development, and how perturbations in these pathways contribute to a variety of pathologies. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Calcium and Cell Fate. Guest Editors: Jacques Haiech, Claus Heizmann, Joachim Krebs, Thierry Capiod and Olivier Mignen.

  13. Temporal evolution of helix hydration in a light-gated ion channel correlates with ion conductance

    PubMed Central

    Lórenz-Fonfría, Víctor A.; Bamann, Christian; Resler, Tom; Schlesinger, Ramona; Bamberg, Ernst; Heberle, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    The discovery of channelrhodopsins introduced a new class of light-gated ion channels, which when genetically encoded in host cells resulted in the development of optogenetics. Channelrhodopsin-2 from Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, CrChR2, is the most widely used optogenetic tool in neuroscience. To explore the connection between the gating mechanism and the influx and efflux of water molecules in CrChR2, we have integrated light-induced time-resolved infrared spectroscopy and electrophysiology. Cross-correlation analysis revealed that ion conductance tallies with peptide backbone amide I vibrational changes at 1,665(−) and 1,648(+) cm−1. These two bands report on the hydration of transmembrane α-helices as concluded from vibrational coupling experiments. Lifetime distribution analysis shows that water influx proceeded in two temporally separated steps with time constants of 10 μs (30%) and 200 μs (70%), the latter phase concurrent with the start of ion conductance. Water efflux and the cessation of the ion conductance are synchronized as well, with a time constant of 10 ms. The temporal correlation between ion conductance and hydration of helices holds for fast (E123T) and slow (D156E) variants of CrChR2, strengthening its functional significance. PMID:26460012

  14. Temporal evolution of helix hydration in a light-gated ion channel correlates with ion conductance.

    PubMed

    Lórenz-Fonfría, Víctor A; Bamann, Christian; Resler, Tom; Schlesinger, Ramona; Bamberg, Ernst; Heberle, Joachim

    2015-10-27

    The discovery of channelrhodopsins introduced a new class of light-gated ion channels, which when genetically encoded in host cells resulted in the development of optogenetics. Channelrhodopsin-2 from Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, CrChR2, is the most widely used optogenetic tool in neuroscience. To explore the connection between the gating mechanism and the influx and efflux of water molecules in CrChR2, we have integrated light-induced time-resolved infrared spectroscopy and electrophysiology. Cross-correlation analysis revealed that ion conductance tallies with peptide backbone amide I vibrational changes at 1,665(-) and 1,648(+) cm(-1). These two bands report on the hydration of transmembrane α-helices as concluded from vibrational coupling experiments. Lifetime distribution analysis shows that water influx proceeded in two temporally separated steps with time constants of 10 μs (30%) and 200 μs (70%), the latter phase concurrent with the start of ion conductance. Water efflux and the cessation of the ion conductance are synchronized as well, with a time constant of 10 ms. The temporal correlation between ion conductance and hydration of helices holds for fast (E123T) and slow (D156E) variants of CrChR2, strengthening its functional significance.

  15. Ion movement through gramicidin A channels. Studies on the diffusion-controlled association step.

    PubMed Central

    Andersen, O S

    1983-01-01

    The permeability characteristics of gramicidin A channels are generally considered to reflect accurately the intrinsic properties of the channels themselves; i.e., the aqueous convergence regions are assumed to be negligible barriers for ion movement through the channels. The validity of this assumption has been examined by an analysis of gramicidin A single-channel current-voltage characteristics up to very high potentials (500 mV). At low permeant ion concentrations the currents approach a voltage-independent limiting value, whose magnitude is proportional to the permeant ion concentration. The magnitude of this current is decreased by experimental maneuvers that decrease the aqueous diffusion coefficient of the ions. It is concluded that the magnitude of this limiting current is determined by the diffusive ion movement through the aqueous convergence regions up to the channel entrance. It is further shown that the small-signal (ohmic) permeability properties also reflect the existence of the aqueous diffusion limitation. These results have considerable consequences for the construction of kinetic models for ion movement through gramicidin A channels. It is shown that the simple two-site-three-barrier model commonly used to interpret gramicidin A permeability data may lead to erroneous conclusions, as biionic potentials will be concentration dependent even when the channel is occupied by at most one ion. The aqueous diffusion limitation must be considered explicitly in the analysis of gramicidin A permeability characteristics. Some implications for understanding the properties of ion-conducting channels in biological membranes will be considered. PMID:6188502

  16. Target Promiscuity and Heterogeneous Effects of Tarantula Venom Peptides Affecting Na+ and K+ Ion Channels*

    PubMed Central

    Redaelli, Elisa; Cassulini, Rita Restano; Silva, Deyanira Fuentes; Clement, Herlinda; Schiavon, Emanuele; Zamudio, Fernando Z.; Odell, George; Arcangeli, Annarosa; Clare, Jeffrey J.; Alagón, Alejandro; de la Vega, Ricardo C. Rodríguez; Possani, Lourival D.; Wanke, Enzo

    2010-01-01

    Venom-derived peptide modulators of ion channel gating are regarded as essential tools for understanding the molecular motions that occur during the opening and closing of ion channels. In this study, we present the characterization of five spider toxins on 12 human voltage-gated ion channels, following observations about the target promiscuity of some spider toxins and the ongoing revision of their “canonical” gating-modifying mode of action. The peptides were purified de novo from the venom of Grammostola rosea tarantulas, and their sequences were confirmed by Edman degradation and mass spectrometry analysis. Their effects on seven tetrodotoxin-sensitive Na+ channels, the three human ether-à-go-go (hERG)-related K+ channels, and two human Shaker-related K+ channels were extensively characterized by electrophysiological techniques. All the peptides inhibited ion conduction through all the Na+ channels tested, although with distinctive patterns. The peptides also affected the three pharmaceutically relevant hERG isoforms differently. At higher concentrations, all peptides also modified the gating of the Na+ channels by shifting the activation to more positive potentials, whereas more complex effects were recorded on hERG channels. No effects were evident on the two Shaker-related K+ channels at concentrations well above the IC50 value for the affected channels. Given the sequence diversity of the tested peptides, we propose that tarantula toxins should be considered both as multimode and target-promiscuous ion channel modulators; both features should not be ignored when extracting mechanistic interpretations about ion channel gating. Our observations could also aid in future structure-function studies and might help the development of novel ion channel-specific drugs. PMID:19955179

  17. Robust ion current oscillations under a steady electric field: An ion channel analog.

    PubMed

    Yan, Yu; Wang, Yunshan; Senapati, Satyajyoti; Schiffbauer, Jarrod; Yossifon, Gilad; Chang, Hsueh-Chia

    2016-08-01

    We demonstrate a nonlinear, nonequilibrium field-driven ion flux phenomenon, which unlike Teorell's nonlinear multiple field theory, requires only the application of one field: robust autonomous current-mass flux oscillations across a porous monolith coupled to a capillary with a long air bubble, which mimics a hydrophobic protein in an ion channel. The oscillations are driven by the hysteretic wetting dynamics of the meniscus when electro-osmotic flow and pressure driven backflow, due to bubble expansion, compete to approach zero mass flux within the monolith. Delayed rupture of the film around the advancing bubble cuts off the electric field and switches the monolith mass flow from the former to the latter. The meniscus then recedes and repairs the rupture to sustain an oscillation for a range of applied fields. This generic mechanism shares many analogs with current oscillations in cell membrane ion channel. At sufficiently high voltage, the system undergoes a state transition characterized by appearance of the ubiquitous 1/f power spectrum. PMID:27627366

  18. Robust ion current oscillations under a steady electric field: An ion channel analog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, Yu; Wang, Yunshan; Senapati, Satyajyoti; Schiffbauer, Jarrod; Yossifon, Gilad; Chang, Hsueh-Chia

    2016-08-01

    We demonstrate a nonlinear, nonequilibrium field-driven ion flux phenomenon, which unlike Teorell's nonlinear multiple field theory, requires only the application of one field: robust autonomous current-mass flux oscillations across a porous monolith coupled to a capillary with a long air bubble, which mimics a hydrophobic protein in an ion channel. The oscillations are driven by the hysteretic wetting dynamics of the meniscus when electro-osmotic flow and pressure driven backflow, due to bubble expansion, compete to approach zero mass flux within the monolith. Delayed rupture of the film around the advancing bubble cuts off the electric field and switches the monolith mass flow from the former to the latter. The meniscus then recedes and repairs the rupture to sustain an oscillation for a range of applied fields. This generic mechanism shares many analogs with current oscillations in cell membrane ion channel. At sufficiently high voltage, the system undergoes a state transition characterized by appearance of the ubiquitous 1 /f power spectrum.

  19. From foe to friend: using animal toxins to investigate ion channel function

    PubMed Central

    Salvatierra, Juan; Wagner, Jordan; Klint, Julie K; King, Glenn F; Olivera, Baldomero M; Bosmans, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Ion channels are vital contributors to cellular communication in a wide range of organisms, a distinct feature that renders this ubiquitous family of membrane-spanning proteins a prime target for toxins found in animal venom. For many years, the unique properties of these naturally-occurring molecules have enabled researchers to probe the structural and functional features of ion channels and to define their physiological roles in normal and diseased tissues. To illustrate their considerable impact on the ion channel field, this review will highlight fundamental insights into toxin-channel interactions as well as recently developed toxin screening methods and practical applications of engineered toxins. PMID:25088688

  20. Determination of ion quantity by using low-temperature ion density theory and molecular dynamics simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Li-Jun; Song, Hong-Fang; Li, Hai-Xia; Chen, Shao-Long; Chen, Ting; Sun, Huan-Yao; Huang, Yao; Tong, Xin; Guan, Hua; Gao, Ke-Lin

    2015-11-01

    In this paper, we report a method by which the ion quantity is estimated rapidly with an accuracy of 4%. This finding is based on the low-temperature ion density theory and combined with the ion crystal size obtained from experiment with the precision of a micrometer. The method is objective, straightforward, and independent of the molecular dynamics (MD) simulation. The result can be used as the reference for the MD simulation, and the method can improve the reliability and precision of MD simulation. This method is very helpful for intensively studying ion crystal, such as phase transition, spatial configuration, temporal evolution, dynamic character, cooling efficiency, and the temperature limit of the ions. Project supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (Grant Nos. 2012CB821301 and 2010CB832803), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 11004222 and 91121016), and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  1. Mechanistic Insights into the Modulation of Voltage-Gated Ion Channels by Inhalational Anesthetics.

    PubMed

    Covarrubias, Manuel; Barber, Annika F; Carnevale, Vincenzo; Treptow, Werner; Eckenhoff, Roderic G

    2015-11-17

    General anesthesia is a relatively safe medical procedure, which for nearly 170 years has allowed life saving surgical interventions in animals and people. However, the molecular mechanism of general anesthesia continues to be a matter of importance and debate. A favored hypothesis proposes that general anesthesia results from direct multisite interactions with multiple and diverse ion channels in the brain. Neurotransmitter-gated ion channels and two-pore K+ channels are key players in the mechanism of anesthesia; however, new studies have also implicated voltage-gated ion channels. Recent biophysical and structural studies of Na+ and K+ channels strongly suggest that halogenated inhalational general anesthetics interact with gates and pore regions of these ion channels to modulate function. Here, we review these studies and provide a perspective to stimulate further advances.

  2. Shielding analysis for a heavy ion beam chamber with plasma channels for ion transport

    SciTech Connect

    Sawan, M.E.; Peterson, R.R.; Yu, S.

    2000-06-28

    Neutronics analysis has been performed to assess the shielding requirements for the insulators and final focusing magnets in a modified HYLIFE-II target chamber that utilizes pre-formed plasma channels for heavy ion beam transport. Using 65 cm thick Flibe jet assemblies provides adequate shielding for the electrical insulator units. Additional shielding is needed in front of the final focusing superconducting quadrupole magnets. A shield with a thickness varying between 45 and 90 cm needs to be provided in front of the quadrupole unit. The final laser mirrors located along the channel axis are in the direct line-of-sight of source neutrons. Neutronics calculations were performed to determine the constraints on the placement of these mirrors to be lifetime components.

  3. Ion channel gene expression in lung adenocarcinoma: potential role in prognosis and diagnosis.

    PubMed

    Ko, Jae-Hong; Gu, Wanjun; Lim, Inja; Bang, Hyoweon; Ko, Eun A; Zhou, Tong

    2014-01-01

    Ion channels are known to regulate cancer processes at all stages. The roles of ion channels in cancer pathology are extremely diverse. We systematically analyzed the expression patterns of ion channel genes in lung adenocarcinoma. First, we compared the expression of ion channel genes between normal and tumor tissues in patients with lung adenocarcinoma. Thirty-seven ion channel genes were identified as being differentially expressed between the two groups. Next, we investigated the prognostic power of ion channel genes in lung adenocarcinoma. We assigned a risk score to each lung adenocarcinoma patient based on the expression of the differentially expressed ion channel genes. We demonstrated that the risk score effectively predicted overall survival and recurrence-free survival in lung adenocarcinoma. We also found that the risk scores for ever-smokers were higher than those for never-smokers. Multivariate analysis indicated that the risk score was a significant prognostic factor for survival, which is independent of patient age, gender, stage, smoking history, Myc level, and EGFR/KRAS/ALK gene mutation status. Finally, we investigated the difference in ion channel gene expression between the two major subtypes of non-small cell lung cancer: adenocarcinoma and squamous-cell carcinoma. Thirty ion channel genes were identified as being differentially expressed between the two groups. We suggest that ion channel gene expression can be used to improve the subtype classification in non-small cell lung cancer at the molecular level. The findings in this study have been validated in several independent lung cancer cohorts.

  4. Decoupling ion conductivity and fluid permeation through optimizing hydrophilic channel morphology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chu, Peter Po-Jen; Fang, Yu-Shin; Tseng, Yu-Chen

    2016-05-01

    Approaches to improve membrane ion conductivity usually leads to higher degree of swelling, more serious fuel cross-over and often sacrificed membrane mechanical strength. Preserving all three main membrane properties is a tough challenge in searching high ion conducting fuel cell membrane. The long standing dilemma is resolved by decoupling ion conduction and fluid permeation property by creating optimized channel morphology using external electric field poling. Success of this approach is demonstrated in the proton conducting membrane composed of poly(ether sulfones) (PES) and sulfonated poly(ether ether ketone) (sPEEK, degree of sulfonation=50%) composites prepared under electric field poling condition. The external field enhanced the aromatic chain ordering from both sPEEK and PES and improved the miscibility. This induced interaction is conducive to the formation of more densely packed amorphous domains that eventually leads to preferentially ordered hydrophilic proton conducting channels having a average dimension (3 nm) smaller than that in generic sPEEK or Nafion. The narrower but more ordered channel displayed much lower methanol permeability (3.17×10-7 cm2/s), and lower swelling ratio (31.20%), while the conductivity (~10-1 S/cm) is higher than that of Nafion, or sPEEK at higher (64%) degree of sulfonation. The composite is chemically stable and highly durable with improved membrane mechanical strength. Nearly 50% increase of DMFC power output is observed using this membrane, and the best power density is recorded at 155 mA/cm2 (80 °C, 1M Methanol).

  5. Forward Trafficking of Ion Channels: What the Clinician Needs to Know

    PubMed Central

    Smyth, James W.; Shaw, Robin M.

    2010-01-01

    Each heartbeat requires precisely orchestrated action potential propagation through the myocardium achieved by coordination of about a million ion channels on the surface of each cardiomyocyte. Specific ion channels must occur within discrete subdomains of the sarcolemma in order to exert their electrophysiological effects with highest efficiency (e.g. voltage-gated Ca2+ channels at T-tubules and gap junctions at intercalated discs). Regulation of ion channel movement to their appropriate membrane subdomain is an exciting research frontier with opportunity for novel therapeutic manipulation of ion channels in the treatment of heart disease. While much research has generally focused upon internalization and subsequent degradation of ion channels, the field of forward trafficking of de novo ion channels from the cell interior to the sarcolemma has now emerged as a key regulatory step in cardiac electrophysiological function. In this brief review, we provide an overview of the current understanding of the cellular biology governing the forward trafficking of ion channels. PMID:20621620

  6. Electrochemical evaluation of chemical selectivity of glutamate receptor ion channel proteins with a multi-channel sensor.

    PubMed

    Sugawara, M; Hirano, A; Rehák, M; Nakanishi, J; Kawai, K; Sato, H; Umezawa, Y

    1997-01-01

    A new method for evaluating chemical selectivity of agonists towards receptor ion channel proteins is proposed by using glutamate receptor (GluR) ion channel proteins and their agonists N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA), L-glutamate, and (2S, 3R, 4S) isomer of 2-(carboxycyclopropyl)glycine (L-CCG-IV). Integrated multi-channel currents, corresponding to the sum of total amount of ions passed through the multiple open channels, were used as a measure of agonists' selectivity to recognize ion channel proteins and induce channel currents. GluRs isolated from rat synaptic plasma membranes were incorporated into planar bilayer lipid membranes (BLMs) formed by the folding method. The empirical factors that affect the selectivity were demonstrated: (i) the number of GluRs incorporated into BLMs varied from one membrane to another; (ii) each BLM contained different subtypes of GluRs (NMDA and/or non-NMDA subtypes); and (iii) the magnitude of multi-channel responses induced by L-glutamate at negative applied potentials was larger than at positive potentials, while those by NMDA and L-CCG-IV were linearly related to applied potentials. The chemical selectivity among NMDA, L-glutamate and L-CCG-IV for NMDA subtype of GluRs was determined with each single BLM in which only NMDA subtype of GluRs was designed to be active by inhibiting the non-NMDA subtypes using a specific antagonist DNQX. The order of selectivity among the relevant agonists for the NMDA receptor subtype was found to be L-CCG-IV > L-glutamate > NMDA, which is consistent with the order of binding affinity of these agonists towards the same NMDA subtypes. The potential use of this approach for evaluating chemical selectivity towards non-NMDA receptor subtypes of GluRs and other receptor ion channel proteins is discussed.

  7. Organic toxins as tools to understand ion channel mechanisms and structure.

    PubMed

    Morales-Lázaro, Sara Luz; Hernández-García, Enrique; Serrano-Flores, Barbara; Rosenbaum, Tamara

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels constitute a varied class of membrane proteins with pivotal roles in cellular physiology and that are fundamental for neuronal signaling, hormone secretion and muscle contractility. Hence, it is not unanticipated that toxins from diverse organisms have evolved to modulate the activity of ion channels. For instance, animals such as cone snails, scorpions, spiders and snakes use toxins to immobilize and capture their prey by affecting ion channel function. This is a beautiful example of an evolutionary process that has led to the development of an injection apparatus from predators and to the existence of toxins with high affinity and specificity for a given target. Toxins have been used in the field of ion channel biophysics for several decades to gain insight into the gating mechanisms and the structure of ion channels. Through the use of these peptides, much has been learned about the ion conduction pathways, voltage-sensing mechanisms, pore sizes, kinetics, inactivation processes, etc. This review examines an assortment of toxins that have been used to study different ion channels and describes some key findings about the structure-function relationships in these proteins through the details of the toxin-ion channel interactions.

  8. Acid stress mediated adaptive divergence in ion channel function during embryogenesis in Rana arvalis

    PubMed Central

    Shu, Longfei; Laurila, Anssi; Räsänen, Katja

    2015-01-01

    Ion channels and pumps are responsible for ion flux in cells, and are key mechanisms mediating cellular function. Many environmental stressors, such as salinity and acidification, are known to severely disrupt ionic balance of organisms thereby challenging fitness of natural populations. Although ion channels can have several vital functions during early life-stages (e.g. embryogenesis), it is currently not known i) how developing embryos maintain proper intracellular conditions when exposed to environmental stress and ii) to what extent environmental stress can drive intra-specific divergence in ion channels. Here we studied the moor frog, Rana arvalis, from three divergent populations to investigate the role of different ion channels and pumps for embryonic survival under acid stress (pH 4 vs 7.5) and whether populations adapted to contrasting acidities differ in the relative role of different ion channel/pumps. We found that ion channels that mediate Ca2+ influx are essential for embryonic survival under acidic pH, and, intriguingly, that populations differ in calcium channel function. Our results suggest that adaptive divergence in embryonic acid stress tolerance of amphibians may in part be mediated by Ca2+ balance. We suggest that ion flux may mediate adaptive divergence of natural populations at early life-stages in the face of environmental stress. PMID:26381453

  9. Nonlocal theory of electromagnetic wave decay into two electromagnetic waves in a rippled density plasma channel

    SciTech Connect

    Sati, Priti; Tripathi, V. K.

    2012-12-15

    Parametric decay of a large amplitude electromagnetic wave into two electromagnetic modes in a rippled density plasma channel is investigated. The channel is taken to possess step density profile besides a density ripple of axial wave vector. The density ripple accounts for the momentum mismatch between the interacting waves and facilitates nonlinear coupling. For a given pump wave frequency, the requisite ripple wave number varies only a little w.r.t. the frequency of the low frequency decay wave. The radial localization of electromagnetic wave reduces the growth rate of the parametric instability. The growth rate decreases with the frequency of low frequency electromagnetic wave.

  10. Regulation of membrane KCNQ1/KCNE1 channel density by sphingomyelin synthase 1.

    PubMed

    Wu, Meikui; Takemoto, Makoto; Taniguchi, Makoto; Takumi, Toru; Okazaki, Toshiro; Song, Wen-Jie

    2016-07-01

    Sphingomyelin synthase (SMS) catalyzes the conversion of phosphatidylcholine and ceramide to sphingomyelin and diacylglycerol. We previously showed that SMS1 deficiency leads to a reduction in expression of the K(+) channel KCNQ1 in the inner ear (Lu MH, Takemoto M, Watanabe K, Luo H, Nishimura M, Yano M, Tomimoto H, Okazaki T, Oike Y, and Song WJ. J Physiol 590: 4029-4044, 2012), causing hearing loss. However, it remains unknown whether this change in expression is attributable to a cellular process or a systemic effect in the knockout animal. Here, we examined whether manipulation of SMS1 activity affects KCNQ1/KCNE1 currents in individual cells. To this end, we expressed the KCNQ1/KCNE1 channel in human embryonic kidney 293T cells and evaluated the effect of SMS1 manipulations on the channel using whole cell recording. Application of tricyclodecan-9-yl-xanthogenate, a nonspecific inhibitor of SMSs, significantly reduced current density and altered channel voltage dependence. Knockdown of SMS1 by a short hairpin RNA, however, reduced current density alone. Consistent with this, overexpression of SMS1 increased the current density without changing channel properties. Furthermore, application of protein kinase D inhibitors also suppressed current density without changing channel properties; this effect was nonadditive with that of SMS1 short hairpin RNA. These results suggest that SMS1 positively regulates KCNQ1/KCNE1 channel density in a protein kinase D-dependent manner.

  11. Methacrylate Polymer Scaffolding Enhances the Stability of Suspended Lipid Bilayers for Ion Channel Recordings and Biosensor Development

    PubMed Central

    Bright, Leonard K.; Baker, Christopher A.; Bränström, Robert; Saavedra, S. Scott; Aspinwall, Craig A.

    2016-01-01

    Black lipid membranes (BLMs) provide a synthetic environment that facilitates measurement of ion channel activity in diverse analytical platforms. The limited electrical, mechanical and temporal stabilities of BLMs pose a significant challenge to development of highly stable measurement platforms. Here, ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA) and butyl methacrylate (BMA) were partitioned into BLMs and photopolymerized to create a cross-linked polymer scaffold in the bilayer lamella that dramatically improved BLM stability. The commercially available methacrylate monomers provide a simple, low cost, and broadly accessible approach for preparing highly stabilized BLMs useful for ion channel analytical platforms. When prepared on silane-modified glass microapertures, the resulting polymer scaffold-stabilized (PSS)-BLMs exhibited significantly improved lifetimes of 23 ± 9 to 40 ± 14 h and > 10-fold increase in mechanical stability, with breakdown potentials > 2000 mV attainable, depending on surface modification and polymer cross-link density. Additionally, the polymer scaffold exerted minimal perturbations to membrane electrical integrity as indicated by mean conductance measurements. When gramicidin A and α-hemolysin were reconstituted into PSS-BLMs, the ion channels retained function comparable to conventional BLMs. This approach is a key advance in the formation of stabilized BLMs and should be amenable to a wide range of receptor and ion channel functionalized platforms. PMID:26925461

  12. Cardiac Mechano-Gated Ion Channels and Arrhythmias.

    PubMed

    Peyronnet, Rémi; Nerbonne, Jeanne M; Kohl, Peter

    2016-01-22

    Mechanical forces will have been omnipresent since the origin of life, and living organisms have evolved mechanisms to sense, interpret, and respond to mechanical stimuli. The cardiovascular system in general, and the heart in particular, is exposed to constantly changing mechanical signals, including stretch, compression, bending, and shear. The heart adjusts its performance to the mechanical environment, modifying electrical, mechanical, metabolic, and structural properties over a range of time scales. Many of the underlying regulatory processes are encoded intracardially and are, thus, maintained even in heart transplant recipients. Although mechanosensitivity of heart rhythm has been described in the medical literature for over a century, its molecular mechanisms are incompletely understood. Thanks to modern biophysical and molecular technologies, the roles of mechanical forces in cardiac biology are being explored in more detail, and detailed mechanisms of mechanotransduction have started to emerge. Mechano-gated ion channels are cardiac mechanoreceptors. They give rise to mechano-electric feedback, thought to contribute to normal function, disease development, and, potentially, therapeutic interventions. In this review, we focus on acute mechanical effects on cardiac electrophysiology, explore molecular candidates underlying observed responses, and discuss their pharmaceutical regulation. From this, we identify open research questions and highlight emerging technologies that may help in addressing them.

  13. Unconventional secretory processing diversifies neuronal ion channel properties

    PubMed Central

    Hanus, Cyril; Geptin, Helene; Tushev, Georgi; Garg, Sakshi; Alvarez-Castelao, Beatriz; Sambandan, Sivakumar; Kochen, Lisa; Hafner, Anne-Sophie; Langer, Julian D; Schuman, Erin M

    2016-01-01

    N-glycosylation – the sequential addition of complex sugars to adhesion proteins, neurotransmitter receptors, ion channels and secreted trophic factors as they progress through the endoplasmic reticulum and the Golgi apparatus – is one of the most frequent protein modifications. In mammals, most organ-specific N-glycosylation events occur in the brain. Yet, little is known about the nature, function and regulation of N-glycosylation in neurons. Using imaging, quantitative immunoblotting and mass spectrometry, we show that hundreds of neuronal surface membrane proteins are core-glycosylated, resulting in the neuronal membrane displaying surprisingly high levels of glycosylation profiles that are classically associated with immature intracellular proteins. We report that while N-glycosylation is generally required for dendritic development and glutamate receptor surface expression, core-glycosylated proteins are sufficient to sustain these processes, and are thus functional. This atypical glycosylation of surface neuronal proteins can be attributed to a bypass or a hypo-function of the Golgi apparatus. Core-glycosylation is regulated by synaptic activity, modulates synaptic signaling and accelerates the turnover of GluA2-containing glutamate receptors, revealing a novel mechanism that controls the composition and sensing properties of the neuronal membrane. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20609.001 PMID:27677849

  14. Properties of the stochastic energization-relaxation channel model for vectorial ion transport.

    PubMed Central

    Muneyuki, E; Fukami, T A

    2000-01-01

    A model for the primary active transport by an ion pump protein is proposed. The model, the "energization-relaxation channel model," describes an ion pump as a multiion channel that undergoes stochastic transitions between two conformational states by external energy supply. When the potential profile along ion transport pathway is asymmetrical, a net ion flux is induced by the transitions. In this model, the coupling of the conformational change and ion transport is stochastic and loose. The model qualitatively reproduces known properties of active transport such as the effect of ion concentration gradient and membrane potential on the rate of transport and the inhibition of ion transport at high ion concentration. We further examined the effect of various parameters on the ion transport properties of this model. The efficiency of the coupling was almost 100% under some conditions. PMID:10692306

  15. Membrane coordination of receptors and channels mediating the inhibition of neuronal ion currents by ADP.

    PubMed

    Gafar, Hend; Dominguez Rodriguez, Manuel; Chandaka, Giri K; Salzer, Isabella; Boehm, Stefan; Schicker, Klaus

    2016-09-01

    ADP and other nucleotides control ion currents in the nervous system via various P2Y receptors. In this respect, Cav2 and Kv7 channels have been investigated most frequently. The fine tuning of neuronal ion channel gating via G protein coupled receptors frequently relies on the formation of higher order protein complexes that are organized by scaffolding proteins and harbor receptors and channels together with interposed signaling components. However, ion channel complexes containing P2Y receptors have not been described. Therefore, the regulation of Cav2.2 and Kv7.2/7.3 channels via P2Y1 and P2Y12 receptors and the coordination of these ion channels and receptors in the plasma membranes of tsA 201 cells have been investigated here. ADP inhibited currents through Cav2.2 channels via both P2Y1 and P2Y12 receptors with phospholipase C and pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins being involved, respectively. The nucleotide controlled the gating of Kv7 channels only via P2Y1 and phospholipase C. In fluorescence energy transfer assays using conventional as well as total internal reflection (TIRF) microscopy, both P2Y1 and P2Y12 receptors were found juxtaposed to Cav2.2 channels, but only P2Y1, and not P2Y12, was in close proximity to Kv7 channels. Using fluorescence recovery after photobleaching in TIRF microscopy, evidence for a physical interaction was obtained for the pair P2Y12/Cav2.2, but not for any other receptor/channel combination. These results reveal a membrane juxtaposition of P2Y receptors and ion channels in parallel with the control of neuronal ion currents by ADP. This juxtaposition may even result in apparent physical interactions between receptors and channels.

  16. Studies in High Current Density Ion Sources for Heavy Ion FusionApplications

    SciTech Connect

    Chacon-Golcher, E.

    2002-06-01

    This dissertation develops diverse research on small (diameter {approx} few mm), high current density (J {approx} several tens of mA/cm{sup 2}) heavy ion sources. The research has been developed in the context of a programmatic interest within the Heavy Ion Fusion (HIF) Program to explore alternative architectures in the beam injection systems that use the merging of small, bright beams. An ion gun was designed and built for these experiments. Results of average current density yield () at different operating conditions are presented for K{sup +} and Cs{sup +} contact ionization sources and potassium aluminum silicate sources. Maximum values for a K{sup +} beam of {approx}90 mA/cm{sup 2} were observed in 2.3 {micro}s pulses. Measurements of beam intensity profiles and emittances are included. Measurements of neutral particle desorption are presented at different operating conditions which lead to a better understanding of the underlying atomic diffusion processes that determine the lifetime of the emitter. Estimates of diffusion times consistent with measurements are presented, as well as estimates of maximum repetition rates achievable. Diverse studies performed on the composition and preparation of alkali aluminosilicate ion sources are also presented. In addition, this work includes preliminary work carried out exploring the viability of an argon plasma ion source and a bismuth metal vapor vacuum arc (MEVVA) ion source. For the former ion source, fast rise-times ({approx} 1 {micro}s), high current densities ({approx} 100 mA/cm{sup 2}) and low operating pressures (< 2 mtorr) were verified. For the latter, high but acceptable levels of beam emittance were measured ({var_epsilon}{sub n} {le} 0.006 {pi} mm {center_dot} mrad) although measured currents differed from the desired ones (I {approx} 5mA) by about a factor of 10.

  17. Highly Sensitive and Patchable Pressure Sensors Mimicking Ion-Channel-Engaged Sensory Organs.

    PubMed

    Chun, Kyoung-Yong; Son, Young Jun; Han, Chang-Soo

    2016-04-26

    Biological ion channels have led to much inspiration because of their unique and exquisite operational functions in living cells. Specifically, their extreme and dynamic sensing abilities can be realized by the combination of receptors and nanopores coupled together to construct an ion channel system. In the current study, we demonstrated that artificial ion channel pressure sensors inspired by nature for detecting pressure are highly sensitive and patchable. Our ion channel pressure sensors basically consisted of receptors and nanopore membranes, enabling dynamic current responses to external forces for multiple applications. The ion channel pressure sensors had a sensitivity of ∼5.6 kPa(-1) and a response time of ∼12 ms at a frequency of 1 Hz. The power consumption was recorded as less than a few μW. Moreover, a reliability test showed stability over 10 000 loading-unloading cycles. Additionally, linear regression was performed in terms of temperature, which showed no significant variations, and there were no significant current variations with humidity. The patchable ion channel pressure sensors were then used to detect blood pressure/pulse in humans, and different signals were clearly observed for each person. Additionally, modified ion channel pressure sensors detected complex motions including pressing and folding in a high-pressure range (10-20 kPa).

  18. Storable droplet interface lipid bilayers for cell-free ion channel studies.

    PubMed

    Jung, Sung-Ho; Choi, Sangbaek; Kim, Young-Rok; Jeon, Tae-Joon

    2012-01-01

    An artificially created lipid bilayer is an important platform in studying ion channels and engineered biosensor applications. However, a lipid bilayer created using conventional techniques is fragile and short-lived, and the measurement of ion channels requires expertise and laborious procedures, precluding practical applications. Here, we demonstrate a storable droplet lipid bilayer precursor frozen with ion channels, resulting in a droplet interface bilayer upon thawing. A small vial with an aqueous droplet in organic solution was flash frozen in -80 °C methanol immediately after an aqueous droplet was introduced into the organic solution and gravity draws the droplet down to the interface upon thawing. A lipid bilayer created along the interface using this method had giga-ohm resistance and typical specific capacitance values. The noise level of this system is favorably comparable to the conventional system. The subsequent incorporation of ion channels, alpha-hemolysin and gramicidin A, showed typical conductance values consistent with those in previous literatures. This novel system to create a lipid bilayer as a whole can be automated from its manufacture to use and indefinitely stored when frozen. As a result, ion channel measurements can be carried out in any place, increasing the accessibility of ion channel studies as well as a number of applications, such as biosensors, ion channel drug screening, and biophysical studies. PMID:21909672

  19. Molecular mechanism of ATP binding and ion channel activation in P2X receptors

    SciTech Connect

    Hattori, Motoyuki; Gouaux, Eric

    2012-10-24

    P2X receptors are trimeric ATP-activated ion channels permeable to Na{sup +}, K{sup +} and Ca{sup 2+}. The seven P2X receptor subtypes are implicated in physiological processes that include modulation of synaptic transmission, contraction of smooth muscle, secretion of chemical transmitters and regulation of immune responses. Despite the importance of P2X receptors in cellular physiology, the three-dimensional composition of the ATP-binding site, the structural mechanism of ATP-dependent ion channel gating and the architecture of the open ion channel pore are unknown. Here we report the crystal structure of the zebrafish P2X4 receptor in complex with ATP and a new structure of the apo receptor. The agonist-bound structure reveals a previously unseen ATP-binding motif and an open ion channel pore. ATP binding induces cleft closure of the nucleotide-binding pocket, flexing of the lower body {beta}-sheet and a radial expansion of the extracellular vestibule. The structural widening of the extracellular vestibule is directly coupled to the opening of the ion channel pore by way of an iris-like expansion of the transmembrane helices. The structural delineation of the ATP-binding site and the ion channel pore, together with the conformational changes associated with ion channel gating, will stimulate development of new pharmacological agents.

  20. Non-silent story on synonymous sites in voltage-gated ion channel genes.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Tong; Ko, Eun A; Gu, Wanjun; Lim, Inja; Bang, Hyoweon; Ko, Jae-Hong

    2012-01-01

    Synonymous mutations are usually referred to as "silent", but increasing evidence shows that they are not neutral in a wide range of organisms. We looked into the relationship between synonymous codon usage bias and residue importance of voltage-gated ion channel proteins in mice, rats, and humans. We tested whether translationally optimal codons are associated with transmembrane or channel-forming regions, i.e., the sites that are particularly likely to be involved in the closing and opening of an ion channel. Our hypothesis is that translationally optimal codons are preferred at the sites within transmembrane domains or channel-forming regions in voltage-gated ion channel genes to avoid mistranslation-induced protein misfolding or loss-of-function. Using the Mantel-Haenszel procedure, which applies to categorical data, we found that translationally optimal codons are more likely to be used at transmembrane residues and the residues involved in channel-forming. We also found that the conservation level at synonymous sites in the transmembrane region is significantly higher than that in the non-transmembrane region. This study provides evidence that synonymous sites in voltage-gated ion channel genes are not neutral. Silent mutations at channel-related sites may lead to dysfunction of the ion channel.

  1. Distribution of acid-sensing ion channel 3 in the rat hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Meng, Q-Y; Wang, W; Chen, X-N; Xu, T-L; Zhou, J-N

    2009-03-31

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), the members of the epithelial sodium channel/degenerin (ENaC/DEG) superfamily, are proton-gated voltage-insensitive cation channels. Six ASIC subunits have been identified and characterized in the mammalian nervous system so far. Of these subunits, ASIC3 has been shown to be predominantly expressed in the peripheral nervous system of rodents and implicated in mechnosensation, chemosensation and pain perception. Little is known on ASIC3 in the brain. We thus employed reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and Western blot to examine the expression of ASIC3 in various rat brain regions, including hippocampus, amygdala, caudate putamen, prefrontal cortex, and hypothalamus. Specific attention was paid to the distribution of ASIC3 in the hypothalamus of rats by using immunohistochemistry. ASIC3 immunoreactivity showed a widespread pattern throughout the hypothalamus, with the highest density in paraventricular nucleus, supraoptic nucleus, suprachiasmatic nucleus, arcuate nucleus, dorsomedial nucleus, median preoptic nucleus, ventromedial preoptic nucleus, and dorsal tuberomammillary nucleus. This study may contribute to the understanding of ASIC3 functions in the CNS. PMID:19356693

  2. Ion Channels in Plant Bioenergetic Organelles, Chloroplasts and Mitochondria: From Molecular Identification to Function.

    PubMed

    Carraretto, Luca; Teardo, Enrico; Checchetto, Vanessa; Finazzi, Giovanni; Uozumi, Nobuyuki; Szabo, Ildiko

    2016-03-01

    Recent technical advances in electrophysiological measurements, organelle-targeted fluorescence imaging, and organelle proteomics have pushed the research of ion transport a step forward in the case of the plant bioenergetic organelles, chloroplasts and mitochondria, leading to the molecular identification and functional characterization of several ion transport systems in recent years. Here we focus on channels that mediate relatively high-rate ion and water flux and summarize the current knowledge in this field, focusing on targeting mechanisms, proteomics, electrophysiology, and physiological function. In addition, since chloroplasts evolved from a cyanobacterial ancestor, we give an overview of the information available about cyanobacterial ion channels and discuss the evolutionary origin of chloroplast channels. The recent molecular identification of some of these ion channels allowed their physiological functions to be studied using genetically modified Arabidopsis plants and cyanobacteria. The view is emerging that alteration of chloroplast and mitochondrial ion homeostasis leads to organelle dysfunction, which in turn significantly affects the energy metabolism of the whole organism. Clear-cut identification of genes encoding for channels in these organelles, however, remains a major challenge in this rapidly developing field. Multiple strategies including bioinformatics, cell biology, electrophysiology, use of organelle-targeted ion-sensitive probes, genetics, and identification of signals eliciting specific ion fluxes across organelle membranes should provide a better understanding of the physiological role of organellar channels and their contribution to signaling pathways in plants in the future. PMID:26751960

  3. Ion channel remodeling in vascular smooth muscle during hypertension: Implications for novel therapeutic approaches

    PubMed Central

    Joseph, Biny K.; Thakali, Keshari M.; Moore, Christopher L.; Rhee, Sung W.

    2013-01-01

    Ion channels are multimeric, transmembrane proteins that selectively mediate ion flux across the plasma membrane in a variety of cells including vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). The dynamic interplay of Ca2+ and K+ channels on the plasma membrane of VSMCs plays a pivotal role in modulating the vascular tone of small arteries and arterioles. The abnormally-elevated arterial tone observed in hypertension thus points to an aberrant expression and function of Ca2+ and K+ channels in the VSMCs. In this short review, we focus on the three well-studied ion channels in VSMCs, namely the L-type Ca2+ (CaV1.2) channels, the voltage-gated K+ (KV) channels, and the large-conductance Ca2+-activated K+ (BK) channels. First, we provide a brief overview on the physiological role of vascular CaV1.2, KV and BK channels in regulating arterial tone. Second, we discuss the current understanding of the expression changes and regulation of CaV1.2, KV and BK channels in the vasculature during hypertension. Third, based on available proof-of-concept studies, we describe the potential therapeutic approaches targeting these vascular ion channels in order to restore blood pressure to normotensive levels. PMID:23376354

  4. Ion channels activated by light in Limulus ventral photoreceptors

    PubMed Central

    1986-01-01

    The light-activated conductance of Limulus ventral photoreceptors was studied using the patch-clamp technique. Channels (40 pS) were observed whose probability of opening was greatly increased by light. In some cells the latency of channel activation was nearly the same as that of the macroscopic response, while in other cells the channel latency was much greater. Like the macroscopic conductance, channel activity was reduced by light adaptation but enhanced by the intracellular injection of the calcium chelator EGTA. The latter observation indicates that channel activation was not a secondary result of the light-induced rise in intracellular calcium. A two-microelectrode voltage-clamp method was used to measure the voltage dependence of the light-activated macroscopic conductance. It was found that this conductance is constant over a wide voltage range more negative than zero, but it increases markedly at positive voltages. The single channel currents measured over this same voltage range show that the single channel conductance is independent of voltage, but that channel gating properties are dependent on voltage. Both the mean channel open time and the opening rate increase at positive voltages. These properties change in a manner consistent with the voltage dependence of the macroscopic conductance. The broad range of similarities between the macroscopic and single channel currents supports the conclusion that the 40-pS channel that we have observed is the principal channel underlying the response to light in these photoreceptors. PMID:2419481

  5. Cancer as a channelopathy: ion channels and pumps in tumor development and progression

    PubMed Central

    Litan, Alisa; Langhans, Sigrid A.

    2015-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that ion channels and pumps not only regulate membrane potential, ion homeostasis, and electric signaling in excitable cells but also play important roles in cell proliferation, migration, apoptosis and differentiation. Consistent with a role in cell signaling, channel proteins and ion pumps can form macromolecular complexes with growth factors, and cell adhesion and other signaling molecules. And while cancer is still not being cataloged as a channelopathy, as the non-traditional roles of ion pumps and channels are being recognized, it is increasingly being suggested that ion channels and ion pumps contribute to cancer progression. Cancer cell migration requires the regulation of adhesion complexes between migrating cells and surrounding extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. Cell movement along solid surfaces requires a sequence of cell protrusions and retractions that mainly depend on regulation of the actin cytoskeleton along with contribution of microtubules and molecular motor proteins such as mysoin. This process is triggered and modulated by a combination of environmental signals, which are sensed and integrated by membrane receptors, including integrins and cadherins. Membrane receptors transduce these signals into downstream signaling pathways, often involving the Rho GTPase protein family. These pathways regulate the cytoskeletal rearrangements necessary for proper timing of adhesion, contraction and detachment of cells in order to find their way through extracellular spaces. Migration and adhesion involve continuous modulation of cell motility, shape and volume, in which ion channels and pumps play major roles. Research on cancer cells suggests that certain ion channels may be involved in aberrant tumor growth and channel inhibitors often lead to growth arrest. This review will describe recent research into the role of ion pumps and ion channels in cell migration and adhesion, and how they may contribute to tumor development

  6. Effects of arsenic-ion beam density on defect evolution in polysilicon films

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Lu-Chang; Chen, Shang-Fu; Wu, Meng-Chyi

    2010-12-01

    In this article, the effects of arsenic-ion implanted beam density on defect evolution in polysilicon film have been investigated. The ion implantation by heavy ions, such as arsenic ions, would induce an elevated temperature and positive charge accumulation on the polysilicon surface at a high implanted beam density. The polysilicon resistance linearly increases with the implanted-ion beam density after a subsequent annealing process. Therefore, by optimizing the ion beam density, the surface temperature and charge accumulated potential would be reduced and well-controlled to obtain a stable polysilicon sheet resistance at the gate electrode.

  7. Nonlinear study of an ion-channel guiding free-electron laser

    SciTech Connect

    Ouyang, Zhengbiao; Zhang, Shi-Chang

    2015-04-15

    A nonlinear model and simulations of the output power of an ion-channel guiding free-electron laser (FEL) are presented in this paper. Results show that the nonlinear output power of an ion-channel guiding FEL is comparable to that of an axial guide magnetic field FEL. Compared to an axial guide magnetic field FEL, an ion-channel guiding FEL substantially weakens the negative effect of the electron-beam energy spread on the output power due to its advantageous focusing mechanism on the electron motion.

  8. Hopping-mediated anion transport through a mannitol-based rosette ion channel.

    PubMed

    Saha, Tanmoy; Dasari, Sathish; Tewari, Debanjan; Prathap, Annamalai; Sureshan, Kana M; Bera, Amal K; Mukherjee, Arnab; Talukdar, Pinaki

    2014-10-01

    Artificial anion selective ion channels with single-file multiple anion-recognition sites are rare. Here, we have designed, by hypothesis, a small molecule that self-organizes to form a barrel rosette ion channel in the lipid membrane environment. Being amphiphilic in nature, this molecule forms nanotubes through intermolecular hydrogen bond formation, while its hydrophobic counterpart is stabilized by hydrophobic interactions in the membrane. The anion selectivity of the channel was investigated by fluorescence-based vesicle assay and planar bilayer conductance measurements. The ion transport by a modified hopping mechanism was demonstrated by molecular dynamics simulation studies. PMID:25203165

  9. Relevance of quantum mechanics on some aspects of ion channel function.

    PubMed

    Roy, Sisir; Llinás, Rodolfo

    2009-06-01

    Mathematical modeling of ionic diffusion along K ion channels indicates that such diffusion is oscillatory, at the weak non-Markovian limit. This finding leads us to derive a Schrödinger-Langevin equation for this kind of system within the framework of stochastic quantization. The Planck's constant is shown to be relevant to the Lagrangian action at the level of a single ion channel. This sheds new light on the issue of applicability of quantum formalism to ion channel dynamics and to the physical constraints of the selectivity filter.

  10. Modulation of Venus ion densities associated with solar variations

    SciTech Connect

    Bauer, S.J.; Taylor, H.A.

    1981-07-01

    The dayside ion concentrations in the Venus ionosphere obtained by the Pioneer Venus orbiter ion mass spectrometer exhibit a modulation corresponding to the 27-day solar variation. Comparisons were made of the amplitudes of modulation of CO/sub 2//sup +/, C/sup +/, and O/sub 2//sup +/, with the amplitudes of the 27-day variation in the 10.7 cm solar radio flux and the simultaneously measured EUV fluxes at He II (304 A) and Lyman ..beta.. (1026 A), together with a theoretical analysis of the effects of solar variability on the ionosphere and neutral atmosphere of Venus. This analysis leads us to the conclusion that the observed modulation of dayside ion densities is primarily due to the variability in the ionizing EUV radiations and, to a much lesser extent, the result of the variability with solar activity of the neutral atmosphere via the variability in exospheric temperature. In this connection, we also show, theoretically, why the percentage variation of exospheric temperature on Venus (as observed in the ONMS data) for a given variation in F/sub 10.7/, is only half of the exospheric temperature variation for Earth.

  11. Ion binding in the Open HCN Pacemaker Channel Pore: Fast Mechanisms to Shape “Slow” Channels

    PubMed Central

    Lyashchenko, Alex K.; Tibbs, Gareth R.

    2008-01-01

    IH pacemaker channels carry a mixed monovalent cation current that, under physiological ion gradients, reverses at ∼−34 mV, reflecting a 4:1 selectivity for K over Na. However, IH channels display anomalous behavior with respect to permeant ions such that (a) open channels do not exhibit the outward rectification anticipated assuming independence; (b) gating and selectivity are sensitive to the identity and concentrations of externally presented permeant ions; (c) the channels' ability to carry an inward Na current requires the presence of external K even though K is a minor charge carrier at negative voltages. Here we show that open HCN channels (the hyperpolarization-activated, cyclic nucleotide sensitive pore forming subunits of IH) undergo a fast, voltage-dependent block by intracellular Mg in a manner that suggests the ion binds close to, or within, the selectivity filter. Eliminating internal divalent ion block reveals that (a) the K dependence of conduction is mediated via K occupancy of site(s) within the pore and that asymmetrical occupancy and/or coupling of these sites to flux further shapes ion flow, and (b) the kinetics of equilibration between K-vacant and K-occupied states of the pore (10–20 μs or faster) is close to the ion transit time when the pore is occupied by K alone (∼0.5–3 μs), a finding that indicates that either ion:ion repulsion involving Na is adequate to support flux (albeit at a rate below our detection threshold) and/or the pore undergoes rapid, permeant ion-sensitive equilibration between nonconducting and conducting configurations. Biophysically, further exploration of the Mg site and of interactions of Na and K within the pore will tell us much about the architecture and operation of this unusual pore. Physiologically, these results suggest ways in which “slow” pacemaker channels may contribute dynamically to the shaping of fast processes such as Na-K or Ca action potentials. PMID:18270171

  12. Fabrication and demonstration of high energy density lithium ion microbatteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Ke

    density on a limited footprint area. In chapter 4, Li-ion batteries based on the LiMn2O4-TiP 2O7 couple are manufactured on flexible paper substrates; where the use of light-weight paper substrates significantly increase the gravimetric energy density of this electrode couple as compared to traditional metal current collectors. In chapter 5, a novel nanowire growth mechanism will be explored to grow interdigitated metal oxide nanowire micro battery electrodes. The growth kinetics of this mechanism is systematically studied to understand how to optimize the growth process to produce electrodes with improved electrochemical properties.

  13. Quantised transistor response to ion channels revealed by nonstationary noise analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becker-Freyseng, C.; Fromherz, P.

    2011-11-01

    We report on the quantised response of a field-effect transistor to molecular ion channels in a biomembrane. HEK293-type cells overexpressing the Shaker B potassium channel were cultured on a silicon chip. An enhanced noise of the transistor is observed when the ion channels are activated. The analysis of the fluctuations in terms of binomial statistics identifies voltage quanta of about 1 μV on the gate. They are attributed to the channel currents that affect the gate voltage according to the Green's function of the cell-chip junction.

  14. Probing conformational changes of gramicidin ion channels by single-molecule patch-clamp fluorescence microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Harms, Gregory S.; Orr, Galya; Montal, Mauricio; Thrall, Brian D.; Colson, Steve D.; Lu, H Peter

    2003-09-01

    Stochastic and inhomogeneous conformational changes often regulate the dynamics of ion channels. Such inhomogeneity makes it difficult, if not impossible; to be characterized not only by ensemble-averaged experiments by also by single-channel patch recording that does not specifically probe the associated conformational changes. Here, we report on our work using a new approach combining single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and single-channel patch recording to investigate conformational changes of individual gramicidin ion channels. We observed fluorescence self-quenching and single-pair fluorescence resonance energy transfer (spFRET) from dye-labeled gramicidin dimmers within the channel was open. We also observed that the efficiency of self-quenching and spFRETS is widely distributed when the channel is closed. Our results strongly suggest a hitherto undetectable correlation of multiple conformational states of the gramicidin channel associated with closed and open states under physiologically-related conditions.

  15. Gramicidins A, B, and C form structurally equivalent ion channels.

    PubMed Central

    Sawyer, D B; Williams, L P; Whaley, W L; Koeppe, R E; Andersen, O S

    1990-01-01

    The membrane structure of the naturally occurring gramicidins A, B, and C was investigated using circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy and single-channel recording techniques. All three gramicidins form channels with fairly similar properties (Bamberg, E., K. Noda, E. Gross, and P. Läuger. 1976. Biochim. Biophys. Acta. 419:223-228.). When incorporated into lysophosphatidylcholine micelles, however, the CD spectrum of gramicidin B is different from that of gramicidin A or C (cf. Prasad, K. U., T. L. Trapane, D. Busath, G. Szabo, and D. W. Urry. 1983. Int. J. Pept. Protein Res. 22:341-347.). The structural identity of the channels formed by gramicidin B has, therefore, been uncertain. We find that when gramicidins A and B are incorporated into dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine vesicles, their CD spectra are fairly similar, suggesting that the two channel structures could be similar. In planar bilayers, gramicidins A, B, and C all form hybrid channels with each other. The properties of the hybrid channels are intermediate to those of the symmetric channels, and the appearance rates of the hybrid channels (relative to the symmetric channels) corresponds to what would be predicted if all three gramicidin molecules were to form structurally equivalent channels. These results allow us to interpret the different behavior of channels formed by the three gramicidins solely on the basis of the amino acid substitution at position 11. PMID:1705449

  16. Minimal diffusion formulation of Markov chain ensembles and its application to ion channel clusters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Güler, Marifi

    2015-06-01

    We study ensembles of continuous-time Markov chains evolving independently under a common transition rate matrix in some finite state space. A diffusion approximation, composed of two specifically coupled Ornstein-Uhlenbeck processes in stochastic differential equation representation, is formulated to deduce how the number of chains in a given particular state evolves in time. This particular form of the formulation builds upon a theoretical argument adduced here. The formulation is minimal in the sense that it is always a two-dimensional stochastic process regardless of the state space size or the transition matrix density, and that it requires no matrix square root operations. A set of criteria, put forward here as to be necessarily captured by any consistent approximation scheme, is used together with the master equation to determine uniquely the parameter values and noise variances in the formulation. The model is applied to the gating dynamics in ion channel clusters.

  17. Transient Receptor Potential Ion Channels Control Thermoregulatory Behaviour in Reptiles

    PubMed Central

    Seebacher, Frank; Murray, Shauna A.

    2007-01-01

    Biological functions are governed by thermodynamics, and animals regulate their body temperature to optimise cellular performance and to avoid harmful extremes. The capacity to sense environmental and internal temperatures is a prerequisite for the evolution of thermoregulation. However, the mechanisms that enable ectothermic vertebrates to sense heat remain unknown. The recently discovered thermal characteristics of transient receptor potential ion channels (TRP) render these proteins suitable to act as temperature sensors. Here we test the hypothesis that TRPs are present in reptiles and function to control thermoregulatory behaviour. We show that the hot-sensing TRPV1 is expressed in a crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), an agamid (Amphibolurus muricatus) and a scincid (Pseudemoia entrecasteauxii) lizard, as well as in the quail and zebrafinch (Coturnix chinensis and Poephila guttata). The TRPV1 genes from all reptiles form a unique clade that is delineated from the mammalian and the ancestral Xenopus sequences by an insertion of two amino acids. TRPV1 and the cool-sensing TRPM8 are expressed in liver, muscle (transversospinalis complex), and heart tissues of the crocodile, and have the potential to act as internal thermometer and as external temperatures sensors. Inhibition of TRPV1 and TRPM8 in C. porosus abolishes the typically reptilian shuttling behaviour between cooling and heating environments, and leads to significantly altered body temperature patterns. Our results provide the proximate mechanism of thermal selection in terrestrial ectotherms, which heralds a fundamental change in interpretation, because TRPs provide the mechanism for a tissue-specific input into the animals' thermoregulatory response. PMID:17356692

  18. Protein-protein interactions among ion channels regulate ion transport in the kidney.

    PubMed

    Boulpaep, E

    2009-01-01

    Epithelial ion transport in various organs has long been known to be controlled by extracellular agonists acting via membrane receptors or by intracellular messengers. Evidence is mounting for regulation of transport by direct interaction among membrane proteins or between a membrane transport protein and membrane-attached proteins. The membrane protein CFTR (Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Regulator) is widely expressed along the length of the nephron, but its role as a chloride channel does not appear to be critical for renal handling of salt and water. It is well established that the inward rectifying K channels (ROMK = Kir 1.1) in the thick ascending limb of Henle and in principal cells of the collecting duct are inhibited by millimolar concentrations of cytosolic Mg-ATP. However, the mechanism of this inhibition has been an enigma. We propose that the ATP-Binding Cassette (ABC) protein CFTR is a cofactor for Kir 1.1 regulation. Indeed, Mg-ATP sensitivity of Kir 1.1 is completely absent in two different mouse models of cystic fibrosis. In addition, the open-closed state of CFTR appears to provide a molecular gating switch that prevents or facilitates the ATP sensing of Kir 1.1. Does Mg-ATP sensing by the CFTR- Kir 1.1 complex play a role in coupling metabolism to ion transport? Physiological intracellular ATP concentrations in tubule cells are in the millimolar range, a saturating concentration for the gating of Kir 1.1 by Mg-ATP. Therefore, Kir 1.1 channels would be closed and unable to contribute to regulation of potassium secretion unless some other process modulated the CFTR-dependent ATP-sensitivity of Kir 1.1. The third component of the metabolic sensor-effector complex for Kir 1.1 regulation is most likely the AMP-regulated serine-threonine kinase, AMP kinase (AMPK). Changing levels in AMP rather than in ATP constitute the metabolic signal "sensed" by tubule cells. Because AMPK inhibits CFTR by modulating CFTR channel gating, we propose that renal K

  19. Molecular Dynamics Simulation of the Antiamoebin Ion Channel: Linking Structure and Conductance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wilson, Michael A.; Wei, Chenyu; Bjelkmar, Paer; Wallace, B. A.; Pohorille, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    Molecular dynamics simulations were carried out in order to ascertain which of the potential multimeric forms of the transmembrane peptaibol channel, antiamoebin, is consistant with its measured conductance. Estimates of the conductance obtained through counting ions that cross the channel and by solving the Nernst-Planck equation yield consistent results, indicating that the motion of ions inside the channel can be satisfactorily described as diffusive.The calculated conductance of octameric channels is markedly higher than the conductance measured in single channel recordings, whereas the tetramer appears to be non-conducting. The conductance of the hexamer was estimated to be 115+/-34 pS and 74+/-20 pS, at 150 mV and 75 mV, respectively, in satisfactory agreement with the value of 90 pS measured at 75 mV. On this basis we propose that the antiamoebin channel consists of six monomers. Its pore is large enough to accommodate K(+) and Cl(-) with their first solvation shells intact. The free energy barrier encountered by K(+) is only 2.2 kcal/mol whereas Cl(-) encounters a substantially higher barrier of nearly 5 kcal/mol. This difference makes the channel selective for cations. Ion crossing events are shown to be uncorrelated and follow Poisson statistics. keywords: ion channels, peptaibols, channel conductance, molecular dynamics

  20. Mechanisms and Distribution of Ion Channels in Retinal Ganglion Cells: Using Temperature as an Independent Variable

    PubMed Central

    Cohen, Ethan D.; Newman, Eric A.

    2010-01-01

    Trains of action potentials of rat and cat retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) were recorded intracellularly across a temperature range of 7–37°C. Phase plots of the experimental impulse trains were precision fit using multicompartment simulations of anatomically reconstructed rat and cat RGCs. Action potential excitation was simulated with a “Five-channel model” [Na, K(delayed rectifier), Ca, K(A), and K(Ca-activated) channels] and the nonspace-clamped condition of the whole cell recording was exploited to determine the channels' distribution on the dendrites, soma, and proximal axon. At each temperature, optimal phase-plot fits for RGCs occurred with the same unique channel distribution. The “waveform” of the electrotonic current was found to be temperature dependent, which reflected the shape changes in the experimental action potentials and confirmed the channel distributions. The distributions are cell-type specific and adequate for soma and dendritic excitation with a safety margin. The highest Na-channel density was found on an axonal segment some 50–130 μm distal to the soma, as determined from the temperature-dependent “initial segment–somadendritic (IS-SD) break.” The voltage dependence of the gating rate constants remains invariant between 7 and 23°C and between 30 and 37°C, but undergoes a transition between 23 and 30°C. Both gating-kinetic and ion-permeability Q10s remain virtually constant between 23 and 37°C (kinetic Q10s = 1.9–1.95; permeability Q10s = 1.49–1.64). The Q10s systematically increase for T <23°C (kinetic Q10 = 8 at T = 8°C). The Na channels were consistently “sleepy” (non-Arrhenius) for T <8°C, with a loss of spiking for T <7°C. PMID:20053849

  1. Low Density Parity Check Codes: Bandwidth Efficient Channel Coding

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fong, Wai; Lin, Shu; Maki, Gary; Yeh, Pen-Shu

    2003-01-01

    Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) Codes provide near-Shannon Capacity performance for NASA Missions. These codes have high coding rates R=0.82 and 0.875 with moderate code lengths, n=4096 and 8176. Their decoders have inherently parallel structures which allows for high-speed implementation. Two codes based on Euclidean Geometry (EG) were selected for flight ASIC implementation. These codes are cyclic and quasi-cyclic in nature and therefore have a simple encoder structure. This results in power and size benefits. These codes also have a large minimum distance as much as d,,, = 65 giving them powerful error correcting capabilities and error floors less than lo- BER. This paper will present development of the LDPC flight encoder and decoder, its applications and status.

  2. Unraveling the mechanism of selective ion transport in hydrophobic subnanometer channels

    PubMed Central

    Li, Hui; Francisco, Joseph S.; Zeng, Xiao Cheng

    2015-01-01

    Recently reported synthetic organic nanopore (SONP) can mimic a key feature of natural ion channels, i.e., selective ion transport. However, the physical mechanism underlying the K+/Na+ selectivity for the SONPs is dramatically different from that of natural ion channels. To achieve a better understanding of the selective ion transport in hydrophobic subnanometer channels in general and SONPs in particular, we perform a series of ab initio molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the diffusivity of aqua Na+ and K+ ions in two prototype hydrophobic nanochannels: (i) an SONP with radius of 3.2 Å, and (ii) single-walled carbon nanotubes (CNTs) with radii of 3–5 Å (these radii are comparable to those of the biological potassium K+ channels). We find that the hydration shell of aqua Na+ ion is smaller than that of aqua K+ ion but notably more structured and less yielding. The aqua ions do not lower the diffusivity of water molecules in CNTs, but in SONP the diffusivity of aqua ions (Na+ in particular) is strongly suppressed due to the rugged inner surface. Moreover, the aqua Na+ ion requires higher formation energy than aqua K+ ion in the hydrophobic nanochannels. As such, we find that the ion (K+ vs. Na+) selectivity of the (8, 8) CNT is ∼20× higher than that of SONP. Hence, the (8, 8) CNT is likely the most efficient artificial K+ channel due in part to its special interior environment in which Na+ can be fully solvated, whereas K+ cannot. This work provides deeper insights into the physical chemistry behind selective ion transport in nanochannels. PMID:26283377

  3. Electric field modulation of the membrane potential in solid-state ion channels.

    PubMed

    Guan, Weihua; Reed, Mark A

    2012-12-12

    Biological ion channels are molecular devices that allow a rapid flow of ions across the cell membrane. Normal physiological functions, such as generating action potentials for cell-to-cell communication, are highly dependent on ion channels that can open and close in response to external stimuli for regulating ion permeation. Mimicking these biological functions using synthetic structures is a rapidly progressing yet challenging area. Here we report the electric field modulation of the membrane potential phenomena in mechanically and chemically robust solid-state ion channels, an abiotic analogue to the voltage-gated ion channels in living systems. To understand the complex physicochemical processes in the electric field regulated membrane potential behavior, both quasi-static and transient characteristics of converting transmembrane ion gradients into electric potential are investigated. It is found that the transmembrane potential can be adequately tuned by an external electrical stimulation, thanks to the unique properties of the voltage-regulated selective ion transport through a nanoscale channel.

  4. Inference of Fast-Ion Density Profile from Tomographic Reconstructions of Fast-Ion Dα Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stagner, L.; Heidbrink, W. W.; Collins, C.; Grierson, B. A.

    2014-10-01

    The fast-ion Dα (FIDA) diagnostic measures light that energetic particles emit in fusion plasmas. The diagnostic is sensitive to different velocity space regions depending on the viewing angle relative to the magnetic field. Consequently, viewing chords that share a radial location give different, yet still valid, results. Velocity space tomography allows for these viewing chords to be combined to infer the complete fast-ion distribution function from the different partial views. If this is done at many radial locations the fast-ion density profile is measured. We demonstrate this method for the case of a classically described, low power, MHD-quiescent plasma from actual FIDA measurements. FIDA measurements were taken at four radial positions, each with four different viewing angles. Simulation results are also shown. Work supported by the US Department of Energy under SC-G903402, DE-FC02-04ER54698 and DE-AC02-09CH11466.

  5. Nanoscale-targeted patch-clamp recordings of functional presynaptic ion channels.

    PubMed

    Novak, Pavel; Gorelik, Julia; Vivekananda, Umesh; Shevchuk, Andrew I; Ermolyuk, Yaroslav S; Bailey, Russell J; Bushby, Andrew J; Moss, Guy W J; Rusakov, Dmitri A; Klenerman, David; Kullmann, Dimitri M; Volynski, Kirill E; Korchev, Yuri E

    2013-09-18

    Direct electrical access to presynaptic ion channels has hitherto been limited to large specialized terminals such as the calyx of Held or hippocampal mossy fiber bouton. The electrophysiology and ion-channel complement of far more abundant small synaptic terminals (≤ 1 μm) remain poorly understood. Here we report a method based on superresolution scanning ion conductance imaging of small synapses in culture at approximately 100-150 nm 3D resolution, which allows presynaptic patch-clamp recordings in all four configurations (cell-attached, inside-out, outside-out, and whole-cell). Using this technique, we report presynaptic recordings of K(+), Na(+), Cl(-), and Ca(2+) channels. This semiautomated approach allows direct investigation of the distribution and properties of presynaptic ion channels at small central synapses. PMID:24050398

  6. Evaluating the impact of a wide range of vegetation densities on river channel pattern

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pattison, Ian; Roucou, Ron

    2016-04-01

    Braided rivers are very dynamic systems which have complex controls over their planform and flow dynamics. Vegetation is one variable which influences channel geometry and pattern, through its effect on local flow hydraulics and the process continuum of sediment erosion-transport-deposition. Furthermore, where in the braided floodplain stable vegetation develops depends on the temporal sequencing of the river discharge i.e. floods. Understanding the effect of vegetation in these highly dynamic systems has multiple consequences for human activity and floodplain management. This paper focusses on the specific role of vegetation density in controlling braided river form and processes. Previous research in this field has been contradictory; with Gran and Paola (2001) finding that increasing vegetation density decreased the number of active channels. In contrast, Coulthard (2005] observed that as vegetation become denser there was an increase in the number of channels. This was hypothesized to be caused by flow separation around vegetation and the development of bars immediately downstream of the plant. This paper reports the results from a set of experiments in a 4m by 1m flume, where discharge, slope and sediment size were kept constant. Artificial grass was used to represent vegetation with a density ranging from 50 plants/m2 to 400 plants/m2. Digital photographs, using a GoPro camera with a fish eye lens, were taken from ~1m above the flume at an interval of 30 seconds during the 3 hour experiment. The experiments showed that as the vegetation density increased from 50 to 150 plants/m2, the number of channel bars developing doubled from 12 to 24. At vegetation densities greater than 150 plants/m2 there was a decline in the number of bars created to a minimum of 8 bars for a density of 400 plants/m2. We attribute these patterns to the effect that the vegetation has on flow hydraulics, sediment transport processes and the spatial patterns of erosion and deposition. We

  7. Permeation in ion channels: the interplay of structure and theory.

    PubMed

    Miloshevsky, Gennady V; Jordan, Peter C

    2004-06-01

    Combined with high-resolution atomic-level crystal structures of channel forming peptides, theory has become a powerful tool for illuminating factors influencing permeation. Here, advantages and limitations of the more familiar continuum and molecular modeling techniques are briefly outlined. These methods are applied to issues of permeation in two different channel families: gramicidin and K(+) channels. Using structural data, theory provides verifiable atomic-level insights into permeation dynamics, channel conductance and molecular selectivity mechanisms. Not only can theory confirm experimental inference, it can also sometimes provide structural perspectives in advance of experiment.

  8. Ab initio molecular dynamics study of proton transfer in a polyglycine analog of the ion channel gramicidin A.

    PubMed Central

    Sagnella, D E; Laasonen, K; Klein, M L

    1996-01-01

    Proton transfer in biological systems is thought to often proceed through hydrogen-bonded chains of water molecules. The ion channel, gramicidin A (gA), houses within its helical structure just such a chain. Using the density functional theory based ab initio molecular dynamics Car-Parrinello method, the structure and dynamics of proton diffusion through a polyglycine analog of the gA ion channel has been investigated. In the channel, a proton, which is initially present as hydronium (H3O+), rapidly forms a strong hydrogen bond with a nearest neighbor water, yielding a transient H5O2+ complex. As in bulk water, strong hydrogen bonding of this complex to a second neighbor solvation shell is required for proton transfer to occur. Within gA, this second neighbor shell included not only a channel water molecule but also a carbonyl of the channel backbone. The present calculations suggest a transport mechanism in which a priori carbonyl solvation is a requirement for proton transfer. Images FIGURE 1 FIGURE 3 PMID:8873991

  9. Ion channels in plants: from bioelectricity, via signaling, to behavioral actions.

    PubMed

    Baluška, František; Mancuso, Stefano

    2013-01-01

    In his recent opus magnum review paper published in the October issue of Physiology Reviews, Rainer Hedrich summarized the field of plant ion channels. (1) He started from the earliest electric recordings initiated by Charles Darwin of carnivorous Dionaea muscipula, (1,2) known as Venus flytrap, and covered the topic extensively up to the most recent discoveries on Shaker-type potassium channels, anion channels of SLAC/SLAH families, and ligand-activated channels of glutamate receptor-like type (GLR) and cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGC). (1.)

  10. Drug-induced Inhibition and Trafficking Disruption of ion Channels: Pathogenesis of QT Abnormalities and Drug-induced Fatal Arrhythmias.

    PubMed

    Cubeddu, Luigi X

    2016-01-01

    Risk of severe and fatal ventricular arrhythmias, presenting as Torsade de Pointes (TdP), is increased in congenital and acquired forms of long QT syndromes (LQTS). Drug-induced inhibition of K+ currents, IKs, IKr, IK1, and/or Ito, delay repolarization, prolong QT, and increase the risk of TdP. Drug-induced interference with IKr is the most common cause of acquired LQTS/TdP. Multiple drugs bind to KNCH2-hERG-K+ channels affecting IKr, including antiarrythmics, antibiotics, antivirals, azole-antifungals, antimalarials, anticancer, antiemetics, prokinetics, antipsychotics, and antidepressants. Azithromycin has been recently added to this list. In addition to direct channel inhibition, some drugs interfere with the traffic of channels from the endoplasmic reticulum to the cell membrane, decreasing mature channel membrane density; e.g., pentamidine, geldalamicin, arsenic trioxide, digoxin, and probucol. Other drugs, such as ketoconazole, fluoxetine, norfluoxetine, citalopram, escitalopram, donepezil, tamoxifen, endoxifen, atazanavir, and roxitromycin, induce both direct channel inhibition and impaired channel trafficking. Although many drugs prolong the QT interval, TdP is a rare event. The following conditions increase the risk of drug-induced TdP: a) Disease states/electrolyte levels (heart failure, structural cardiac disease, bradycardia, hypokalemia); b) Pharmacogenomic variables (presence of congenital LQTS, subclinical ion-channel mutations, history of or having a relative with history of drug-induced long QT/TdP); c) Pharmacodynamic and kinetic factors (high doses, women, elderly, metabolism inhibitors, combining two or more QT prolonging drugs, drugs that prolong the QT and increase QT dispersion, and drugs with multiple actions on ion channels). Because most of these conditions are preventable, careful evaluation of risk factors and increased knowledge of drug use associated with repolarization abnormalities are strongly recommended. PMID:26926294

  11. Gasotransmitter regulation of ion channels: a key step in O2 sensing by the carotid body.

    PubMed

    Prabhakar, Nanduri R; Peers, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Carotid bodies detect hypoxia in arterial blood, translating this stimulus into physiological responses via the CNS. It is long established that ion channels are critical to this process. More recent evidence indicates that gasotransmitters exert powerful influences on O2 sensing by the carotid body. Here, we review current understanding of hypoxia-dependent production of gasotransmitters, how they regulate ion channels in the carotid body, and how this impacts carotid body function.

  12. Calcium ions open a selectivity filter gate during activation of the MthK potassium channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Posson, David J.; Rusinova, Radda; Andersen, Olaf S.; Nimigean, Crina M.

    2015-09-01

    Ion channel opening and closing are fundamental to cellular signalling and homeostasis. Gates that control K+ channel activity were found both at an intracellular pore constriction and within the selectivity filter near the extracellular side but the specific location of the gate that opens Ca2+-activated K+ channels has remained elusive. Using the Methanobacterium thermoautotrophicum homologue (MthK) and a stopped-flow fluorometric assay for fast channel activation, we show that intracellular quaternary ammonium blockers bind to closed MthK channels. Since the blockers are known to bind inside a central channel cavity, past the intracellular entryway, the gate must be within the selectivity filter. Furthermore, the blockers access the closed channel slower than the open channel, suggesting that the intracellular entryway narrows upon pore closure, without preventing access of either the blockers or the smaller K+. Thus, Ca2+-dependent gating in MthK occurs at the selectivity filter with coupled movement of the intracellular helices.

  13. Structural mechanism for the regulation of HCN ion channels by the accessory protein TRIP8b

    PubMed Central

    DeBerg, Hannah A.; Bankston, John R.; Rosenbaum, Joel C.; Brzovic, Peter S.; Zagotta, William N.; Stoll, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    Summary Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) ion channels underlie the cationic Ih current present in many neurons. The direct binding of cAMP to HCN channels increases the rate and extent of channel opening and results in a depolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of activation. TRIP8b is an accessory protein that regulates the cell surface expression and dendritic localization of HCN channels and reduces the cyclic nucleotide dependence of these channels. Here we use electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) to show that TRIP8b binds to the apo state of the cyclic nucleotide-binding domain (CNBD) of HCN2 channels without changing the overall domain structure. With EPR and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), we locate TRIP8b relative to the HCN channel and identify the binding interface on the CNBD. These data provide a structural framework for understanding how TRIP8b regulates the cyclic nucleotide dependence of HCN channels. PMID:25800552

  14. Calcium ions open a selectivity filter gate during activation of the MthK potassium channel.

    PubMed

    Posson, David J; Rusinova, Radda; Andersen, Olaf S; Nimigean, Crina M

    2015-01-01

    Ion channel opening and closing are fundamental to cellular signalling and homeostasis. Gates that control K(+) channel activity were found both at an intracellular pore constriction and within the selectivity filter near the extracellular side but the specific location of the gate that opens Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channels has remained elusive. Using the Methanobacterium thermoautotrophicum homologue (MthK) and a stopped-flow fluorometric assay for fast channel activation, we show that intracellular quaternary ammonium blockers bind to closed MthK channels. Since the blockers are known to bind inside a central channel cavity, past the intracellular entryway, the gate must be within the selectivity filter. Furthermore, the blockers access the closed channel slower than the open channel, suggesting that the intracellular entryway narrows upon pore closure, without preventing access of either the blockers or the smaller K(+). Thus, Ca(2+)-dependent gating in MthK occurs at the selectivity filter with coupled movement of the intracellular helices.

  15. Increasing positive ion number densities below the peak of ion-electron pair production in Titan's ionosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Vigren, E.; Galand, M.; Shebanits, O.; Wahlund, J.-E.; Geppert, W. D.; Lavvas, P.; Vuitton, V.

    2014-05-01

    We combine derived ion-electron pair formation rates with Cassini Radio Plasma Wave Science Langmuir Probe measurements of electron and positive ion number densities in Titan's sunlit ionosphere. We show that positive ion number densities in Titan's sunlit ionosphere can increase toward significantly lower altitudes than the peak of ion-electron pair formation despite that the effective ion-electron recombination coefficient increases. This is explained by the increased mixing ratios of negative ions, which are formed by electron attachment to neutrals. While such a process acts as a sink for free electrons, the positive ions become longer-lived as the rate coefficients for ion-anion neutralization reactions are smaller than those for ion-electron dissociative recombination reactions.

  16. Altered ion channel conductance and ionic selectivity induced by large imposed membrane potential pulse.

    PubMed Central

    Chen, W; Lee, R C

    1994-01-01

    The effects of large magnitude transmembrane potential pulses on voltage-gated Na and K channel behavior in frog skeletal muscle membrane were studied using a modified double vaseline-gap voltage clamp. The effects of electroconformational damage to ionic channels were separated from damage to lipid bilayer (electroporation). A 4 ms transmembrane potential pulse of -600 mV resulted in a reduction of both Na and K channel conductivities. The supraphysiologic pulses also reduced ionic selectivity of the K channels against Na+ ions, resulting in a depolarization of the membrane resting potential. However, TTX and TEA binding effects were unaltered. The kinetics of spontaneous reversal of the electroconformational damage of channel proteins was found to be dependent on the magnitude of imposed membrane potential pulse. These results suggest that muscle and nerve dysfunction after electrical shock may be in part caused by electroconformational damage to voltage-gated ion channels. PMID:7948676

  17. Regulation of photosynthesis by ion channels in cyanobacteria and higher plants.

    PubMed

    Checchetto, Vanessa; Teardo, Enrico; Carraretto, Luca; Formentin, Elide; Bergantino, Elisabetta; Giacometti, Giorgio Mario; Szabo, Ildiko

    2013-12-01

    Photosynthesis converts light energy into chemical energy, and supplies ATP and NADPH for CO2 fixation into carbohydrates and for the synthesis of several compounds which are essential for autotrophic growth. Oxygenic photosynthesis takes place in thylakoid membranes of chloroplasts and photosynthetic prokaryote cyanobacteria. An ancestral photoautotrophic prokaryote related to cyanobacteria has been proposed to give rise to chloroplasts of plants and algae through an endosymbiotic event. Indeed, photosynthetic complexes involved in the electron transport coupled to H(+) translocation and ATP synthesis are similar in higher plants and cyanobacteria. Furthermore, some of the protein and solute/ion conducting machineries also share common structure and function. Electrophysiological and biochemical evidence support the existence of ion channels in the thylakoid membrane in both types of organisms. By allowing specific ion fluxes across thylakoid membranes, ion channels have been hypothesized to either directly or indirectly regulate photosynthesis, by modulating the proton motive force. Recent molecular identification of some of the thylakoid-located channels allowed to obtain genetic proof in favor of such hypothesis. Furthermore, some ion channels of the envelope membrane in chloroplasts have also been shown to impact on this light-driven process. Here we give an overview of thylakoid/chloroplast located ion channels of higher plants and of cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. We focus on channels shown to be implicated in the regulation of photosynthesis and discuss the possible mechanisms of action.

  18. Ion Channels Made from a Single Membrane-Spanning DNA Duplex

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Because of their hollow interior, transmembrane channels are capable of opening up pathways for ions across lipid membranes of living cells. Here, we demonstrate ion conduction induced by a single DNA duplex that lacks a hollow central channel. Decorated with six porpyrin-tags, our duplex is designed to span lipid membranes. Combining electrophysiology measurements with all-atom molecular dynamics simulations, we elucidate the microscopic conductance pathway. Ions flow at the DNA–lipid interface as the lipid head groups tilt toward the amphiphilic duplex forming a toroidal pore filled with water and ions. Ionic current traces produced by the DNA-lipid channel show well-defined insertion steps, closures, and gating similar to those observed for traditional protein channels or synthetic pores. Ionic conductances obtained through simulations and experiments are in excellent quantitative agreement. The conductance mechanism realized here with the smallest possible DNA-based ion channel offers a route to design a new class of synthetic ion channels with maximum simplicity. PMID:27324157

  19. Structural analysis of calmodulin binding to ion channels demonstrates the role of its plasticity in regulation.

    PubMed

    Kovalevskaya, Nadezda V; van de Waterbeemd, Michiel; Bokhovchuk, Fedir M; Bate, Neil; Bindels, René J M; Hoenderop, Joost G J; Vuister, Geerten W

    2013-11-01

    The Ca²⁺-binding protein calmodulin (CaM) is a well-known regulator of ion-channel activity. Consequently, the Protein Data Bank contains many structures of CaM in complex with different fragments of ion channels that together display a variety of binding modes. In addition to the canonical interaction, in which CaM engages its target with both its domains, many of the ion-channel-CaM complexes demonstrate alternative non-canonical binding modes that depend on the target and experimental conditions. Based on these findings, several mechanisms of ion-channel regulation by CaM have been proposed, all exploiting its plasticity and flexibility in interacting with its targets. In this review, we focus on complexes of CaM with either the voltage-gated calcium channels; the voltage-gated sodium channels or the small conductance calcium-activated potassium channels, for which both structural and functional data are available. For each channel, the functional relevance of these structural data and possible mechanism of calcium-dependent (in)activation and/or facilitation are discussed in detail. PMID:23609407

  20. Effective diameters of ion channels formed by homologs of the antibiotic chrysospermin.

    PubMed

    Ternovsky, V I; Grigoriev, P A; Berestovsky, G N; Schlegel, R; Dornberger, K; Gräfe, U

    1997-01-01

    Radii of ion channels formed in the lipid bilayer by 4 homologs of the alamethicin-like antibiotic, chrysospermin, were determined using hydrophilic nonelectrolytes. It is shown that the replacement of isovaline amino acid at position 15 of the polypeptide chain by alpha-aminoisobutyric acid results in the decrease in the channel effective radius from 1.2 +/- 0.15 to 0.94 +/- 0.1 nm and a respective 2.5-fold decrease in channel conductance.

  1. Role of ion density in growth, transport, and morphology of nanoparticles generated in plasmas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chai, Kil Byoung; Choe, Wonho

    2012-08-01

    Spatial distribution, growth, and morphology of the nanoparticle were investigated in the plasmas with relatively low and high ion densities. Our experimental results reveal that cauliflower-shaped amorphous nanoparticles are dominantly distributed throughout the entire plasma in the low ion density plasma while spherical crystalline particles are spread near the plasma edge in the high ion density plasma. Only agglomeration growth step of the nanoparticles was observed without molecular accretion growth step in the high density plasma. Based on the experimental and numerical results, the role of ion density in the growth mechanism and transport of the nanoparticles is discussed.

  2. Electron density measurement of cesium seeded negative ion source by surface wave probe

    SciTech Connect

    Kisaki, M.; Tsumori, K.; Nakano, H.; Ikeda, K.; Osakabe, M.; Nagaoka, K.; Shibuya, M.; Sato, M.; Sekiguchi, H.; Komada, S.; Kondo, T.; Hayashi, H.; Asano, E.; Takeiri, Y.; Kaneko, O.

    2012-02-15

    Electron density measurements of a large-scaled negative ion source were carried out with a surface wave probe. By comparison of the electron densities determined with the surface wave probe and a Langmuir probe, it was confirmed that the surface wave probe is highly available for diagnostic of the electron density in H{sup -} ion sources. In addition, it was found that the ratio of the electron density to the H{sup -} ion density dramatically decreases with increase of a bias voltage and the H{sup -} ions become dominant negative particles at the bias voltage of more than 6 V.

  3. Impact of the track density versus linear density trade-off on the read channel: TCPR4 versus EPR4

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sayiner, Necip

    1995-12-01

    The areal density on a magnetic recording medium can be increased by increasing the linear bit density, or by increasing the track density, or, more commonly, by a combination of both. Equalizing the signal to a higher order partial response polynomial (i.e. EPR4), and employing a trellis code in conjunction with a PR4 channel (i.e. TCPR4) are among the techniques to achieve this goal by providing performance gains over a PR4 system. In this study, the potential increases in linear and track densities that could be afforded by EPR4 and TCPR4 are investigated by simulating a read channel model which incorporates the effects of non-ideal timing recovery, A/D conversion, and finite register-lengths, using spinstand data. In order to quantify the effects of the increased track density, intertrack interference (ITI) is taken into account in evaluating the performance, by defining the interference as a function of the track misregistration. The trade-offs concerning the equalizer loss due to a higher linear bit density and the SNR loss due to a narrower track, as a function of PW50/T, are addressed. The measure of performance used captures the coding gain, the rate loss due to coding, the loss of the equalizer, and the degradation due to ITI. Assuming similar hardware complexity for the detectors, the two alternatives are compared in terms of the areal density increase they provide over a range of user bit densities that are of current practical interest.

  4. PSIONplus: Accurate Sequence-Based Predictor of Ion Channels and Their Types

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Jianzhao; Cui, Wei; Sheng, Yajun; Ruan, Jishou; Kurgan, Lukasz

    2016-01-01

    Ion channels are a class of membrane proteins that attracts a significant amount of basic research, also being potential drug targets. High-throughput identification of these channels is hampered by the low levels of availability of their structures and an observation that use of sequence similarity offers limited predictive quality. Consequently, several machine learning predictors of ion channels from protein sequences that do not rely on high sequence similarity were developed. However, only one of these methods offers a wide scope by predicting ion channels, their types and four major subtypes of the voltage-gated channels. Moreover, this and other existing predictors utilize relatively simple predictive models that limit their accuracy. We propose a novel and accurate predictor of ion channels, their types and the four subtypes of the voltage-gated channels called PSIONplus. Our method combines a support vector machine model and a sequence similarity search with BLAST. The originality of PSIONplus stems from the use of a more sophisticated machine learning model that for the first time in this area utilizes evolutionary profiles and predicted secondary structure, solvent accessibility and intrinsic disorder. We empirically demonstrate that the evolutionary profiles provide the strongest predictive input among new and previously used input types. We also show that all new types of inputs contribute to the prediction. Results on an independent test dataset reveal that PSIONplus obtains relatively good predictive performance and outperforms existing methods. It secures accuracies of 85.4% and 68.3% for the prediction of ion channels and their types, respectively, and the average accuracy of 96.4% for the discrimination of the four ion channel subtypes. Standalone version of PSIONplus is freely available from https://sourceforge.net/projects/psion/ PMID:27044036

  5. Activation of mechanosensitive ion channel TRPV4 normalizes tumor vasculature and improves cancer therapy

    PubMed Central

    Adapala, Ravi K.; Thoppil, Roslin J.; Ghosh, Kaustabh; Cappelli, Holly; Dudley, Andrew C.; Paruchuri, Sailaja; Keshamouni, Venkateshwar; Klagsbrun, Michael; Meszaros, J. Gary; Chilian, William M.; Ingber, Donald E.; Thodeti, Charles K.

    2016-01-01

    Tumor vessels are characterized by abnormal morphology and hyper-permeability that together cause inefficient delivery of chemotherapeutic agents. Although VEGF has been established as a critical regulator of tumor angiogenesis, the role of mechanical signaling in the regulation of tumor vasculature or tumor endothelial cell (TEC) function is not known. Here, we show that the mechanosensitive ion channel TRPV4 regulates tumor angiogenesis and tumor vessel maturation via modulation of TEC mechanosensitivity. We found that TEC exhibit reduced TRPV4 expression and function, which is correlated with aberrant mechanosensitivity towards ECM stiffness, increased migration and abnormal angiogenesis by TEC. Further, syngeneic tumor experiments revealed that the absence of TRPV4 induced increased vascular density, vessel diameter and reduced pericyte coverage resulting in enhanced tumor growth in TRPV4 KO mice. Importantly, overexpression or pharmacological activation of TRPV4 restored aberrant TEC mechanosensitivity, migration and normalized abnormal angiogenesis in vitro by modulating Rho activity. Finally, a small molecule activator of TRPV4, GSK1016790A, in combination with anti-cancer drug Cisplatin, significantly reduced tumor growth in WT mice by inducing vessel maturation. Our findings demonstrate TRPV4 channels to be critical regulators of tumor angiogenesis and represent a novel target for anti-angiogenic and vascular normalization therapies. PMID:25867067

  6. Polymerized Planar Suspended Lipid Bilayers for Single Ion Channel Recordings: Comparison of Several Dienoyl Lipids

    PubMed Central

    Heitz, Benjamin A.; Xu, Juhua; Jones, Ian W.; Keogh, John P.; Comi, Troy J.; Hall, Henry K.; Aspinwall, Craig A.; Saavedra, S. Scott

    2011-01-01

    The stabilization of suspended planar lipid membranes, or black lipid membranes (BLMs), through polymerization of mono- and bis-functionalized dienoyl lipids was investigated. Electrical properties, including capacitance, conductance, and dielectric breakdown voltage, were determined for BLMs composed of mono-DenPC, bis-DenPC, mono-SorbPC, and bis-SorbPC both prior to and following photopolymerization, with diphytanoyl phosphocholine (DPhPC) serving as a control. Poly(lipid) BLMs exhibited significantly longer lifetimes and increased the stability to air-water transfers. BLM stability followed the order: bis-DenPC > mono-DenPC ≈ mono-SorbPC > bis-SorbPC. The conductance of bis-SorbPC BLMs was significantly higher than that of the other lipids, which is attributed to a high density of hydrophilic pores, resulting in relatively unstable membranes. The use of poly(lipid) BLMs as matrices for supporting the activity of an ion channel protein (IC) was explored using α – hemolysin (α-HL), a model IC. Characteristic i-V plots of α-HL were maintained following photopolymerization of bis-DenPC, mono-DenPC, and mono-SorbPC, demonstrating the utility of these materials for preparing more durable BLMs for single channel recordings of reconstituted ICs. PMID:21226498

  7. Stochastic differential equation models for ion channel noise in Hodgkin-Huxley neurons.

    PubMed

    Goldwyn, Joshua H; Imennov, Nikita S; Famulare, Michael; Shea-Brown, Eric

    2011-04-01

    The random transitions of ion channels between conducting and nonconducting states generate a source of internal fluctuations in a neuron, known as channel noise. The standard method for modeling the states of ion channels nonlinearly couples continuous-time Markov chains to a differential equation for voltage. Beginning with the work of R. F. Fox and Y.-N. Lu [Phys. Rev. E 49, 3421 (1994)], there have been attempts to generate simpler models that use stochastic differential equation (SDEs) to approximate the stochastic spiking activity produced by Markov chain models. Recent numerical investigations, however, have raised doubts that SDE models can capture the stochastic dynamics of Markov chain models.We analyze three SDE models that have been proposed as approximations to the Markov chain model: one that describes the states of the ion channels and two that describe the states of the ion channel subunits. We show that the former channel-based approach can capture the distribution of channel noise and its effects on spiking in a Hodgkin-Huxley neuron model to a degree not previously demonstrated, but the latter two subunit-based approaches cannot. Our analysis provides intuitive and mathematical explanations for why this is the case. The temporal correlation in the channel noise is determined by the combinatorics of bundling subunits into channels, but the subunit-based approaches do not correctly account for this structure. Our study confirms and elucidates the findings of previous numerical investigations of subunit-based SDE models. Moreover, it presents evidence that Markov chain models of the nonlinear, stochastic dynamics of neural membranes can be accurately approximated by SDEs. This finding opens a door to future modeling work using SDE techniques to further illuminate the effects of ion channel fluctuations on electrically active cells. PMID:21599202

  8. Permeation Redux: Thermodynamics and Kinetics of Ion Movement through Potassium Channels

    PubMed Central

    Horn, Richard; Roux, Benoît; Åqvist, Johan

    2014-01-01

    The fundamental biophysics underlying the selective movement of ions through ion channels was launched by George Eisenman in the 1960s, using glass electrodes. This minireview examines the insights from these early studies and the explosive progress made since then. PMID:24806917

  9. Toxic β-Amyloid (Aβ) Alzheimer's Ion Channels: From Structure to Function and Design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nussinov, Ruth

    2012-02-01

    Full-length amyloid beta peptides (Aβ1-40/42) form neuritic amyloid plaques in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and are implicated in AD pathology. Recent biophysical and cell biological studies suggest a direct mechanism of amyloid beta toxicity -- ion channel mediated loss of calcium homeostasis. Truncated amyloid beta fragments (Aβ11-42 and Aβ17-42), commonly termed as non-amyloidogenic are also found in amyloid plaques of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and in the preamyloid lesions of Down's syndrome (DS), a model system for early onset AD study. Very little is known about the structure and activity of these smaller peptides although they could be key AD and DS pathological agents. Using complementary techniques of explicit solvent molecular dynamics (MD) simulations, atomic force microscopy (AFM), channel conductance measurements, cell calcium uptake assays, neurite degeneration and cell death assays, we have shown that non-amyloidogenic Aβ9-42 and Aβ17-42 peptides form ion channels with loosely attached subunits and elicit single channel conductances. The subunits appear mobile suggesting insertion of small oligomers, followed by dynamic channel assembly and dissociation. These channels allow calcium uptake in APP-deficient cells and cause neurite degeneration in human cortical neurons. Channel conductance, calcium uptake and neurite degeneration are selectively inhibited by zinc, a blocker of amyloid ion channel activity. Thus truncated Aβ fragments could account for undefined roles played by full length Aβs and provide a novel mechanism of AD and DS pathology. The emerging picture from our large-scale simulations is that toxic ion channels formed by β-sheets are highly polymorphic, and spontaneously break into loosely interacting dynamic units (though still maintaining ion channel structures as imaged with AFM), that associate and dissociate leading to toxic ion flux. This sharply contrasts intact conventional gated ion channels that consist of tightly

  10. Channel waveguides on RbTiOPO4 by Cs+ ion exchange.

    PubMed

    Cugat, J; Solé, R; Carvajal, J J; Mateos, X; Massons, J; Lifante, G; Díaz, F; Aguiló, M

    2013-02-01

    In this Letter we report Cs(+) ion exchange channel waveguides on RbTiOPO(4) (RTP) for what we believe is the first time. A Ti channel mask was fabricated on an RTP substrate by conventional photolithography. The ion exchange process was carried out in a CsNO(3) melt, and the channels produced ranged from 6 to 11 μm in width. The near-field pattern of the modes was recorded, and type II second harmonic generation in waveguide regime was obtained, producing 512.5 nm green light. The optical characterization shows optical losses of 3.8 dB/cm.

  11. Charge Fluctuations and Boundary Conditions of Biological Ion Channels: Effect on the Ionic Transition Rate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tindjong, R.; Luchinsky, D. G.; McClintock, P. V. E.; Kaufman, I.; Eisenberg, R. S.

    2009-04-01

    A self-consistent solution is derived for the Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) equation, valid both inside a biological ion channel and in the adjacent bulk fluid. An iterative procedure is used to match the two solutions together at the channel mouth. Charge fluctuations at the mouth are modeled as shot noise flipping the height of the potential barrier at the selectivity site. The resultant estimates of the conductivity of the ion channel are in good agreement with Gramicidin experimental measurements and they reproduce the observed current saturation with increasing concentration.

  12. Charge Fluctuations and Boundary Conditions of Biological Ion Channels: Effect on the Ionic Transition Rate

    SciTech Connect

    Tindjong, R.; McClintock, P. V. E.; Luchinsky, D. G.; Kaufman, I.; Eisenberg, R. S.

    2009-04-23

    A self-consistent solution is derived for the Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) equation, valid both inside a biological ion channel and in the adjacent bulk fluid. An iterative procedure is used to match the two solutions together at the channel mouth. Charge fluctuations at the mouth are modeled as shot noise flipping the height of the potential barrier at the selectivity site. The resultant estimates of the conductivity of the ion channel are in good agreement with Gramicidin experimental measurements and they reproduce the observed current saturation with increasing concentration.

  13. Flowing afterglow measurements of the density dependence of gas-phase ion-ion mutual neutralization reactions

    SciTech Connect

    Shuman, Nicholas S.; Viggiano, Albert A.; Johnsen, Rainer

    2013-05-28

    We have studied the dependence of several ion-ion mutual neutralization (MN) reactions on helium density in the range from 1.6 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 16} to 1.5 Multiplication-Sign 10{sup 17} cm{sup -3} at 300 K, using the Variable Electron and Neutral Density Attachment Mass Spectrometry method. The rate coefficients of the reactions Ar{sup +}+ Br{sub 2}{sup -}, Ar{sup +}+ SF{sub 6}{sup -}, and Ar{sup +}+ C{sub 7}F{sub 14}{sup -} were found to be independent of gas density over the range studied, in disagreement with earlier observations that similar MN reactions are strongly enhanced at the same gas densities. The cause of the previous enhancement with density is traced to the use of 'orbital-motion-limit' theory to infer ion densities from the currents collected by ion-attracting Langmuir probes in a region where it is not applicable.

  14. Ion channel profile of TRPM8 cold receptors reveals a role of TASK-3 potassium channels in thermosensation.

    PubMed

    Morenilla-Palao, Cruz; Luis, Enoch; Fernández-Peña, Carlos; Quintero, Eva; Weaver, Janelle L; Bayliss, Douglas A; Viana, Félix

    2014-09-11

    Animals sense cold ambient temperatures through the activation of peripheral thermoreceptors that express TRPM8, a cold- and menthol-activated ion channel. These receptors can discriminate a very wide range of temperatures from innocuous to noxious. The molecular mechanism responsible for the variable sensitivity of individual cold receptors to temperature is unclear. To address this question, we performed a detailed ion channel expression analysis of cold-sensitive neurons, combining bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) transgenesis with a molecular-profiling approach in fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS)-purified TRPM8 neurons. We found that TASK-3 leak potassium channels are highly enriched in a subpopulation of these sensory neurons. The thermal threshold of TRPM8 cold neurons is decreased during TASK-3 blockade and in mice lacking TASK-3, and, most importantly, these mice display hypersensitivity to cold. Our results demonstrate a role of TASK-3 channels in thermosensation, showing that a channel-based combinatorial strategy in TRPM8 cold thermoreceptors leads to molecular specialization and functional diversity. PMID:25199828

  15. Postsynaptic density-93 clusters Kv1 channels at axon initial segments independently of Caspr2.

    PubMed

    Ogawa, Yasuhiro; Horresh, Ido; Trimmer, James S; Bredt, David S; Peles, Elior; Rasband, Matthew N

    2008-05-28

    Postsynaptic density-93 (PSD-93)/Chapsyn-110 is a PDZ (PSD-95/Discs large/zona occludens-1) domain-containing membrane-associated guanylate kinase (MAGUK) that functions as a scaffold to assemble channels, receptors, and other signaling proteins at cell membranes. PSD-93 is highly enriched at synapses, but mice lacking this protein have no synaptic structural abnormalities, probably because of overlapping expression and redundancy with other MAGUKs. Consequently, the function of PSD-93 is not well understood. Here, we show that PSD-93, but not other MAGUKs, is enriched at the axon initial segment (AIS), where it colocalizes with Kv1.1, Kv1.2, Kv1.4, and Kvbeta2 subunit-containing K(+) channels, Caspr2, and TAG-1 (transient axonal glycoprotein-1). When coexpressed with Kv1 channels in heterologous cells, PSD-93 induces formation of large cell-surface clusters. Knockdown of PSD-93 in cultured hippocampal neurons by RNA interference disrupted Kv1 channel localization at the AIS. Similarly, PSD-93-/- mice failed to cluster Kv1 channels at the AIS of cortical and hippocampal neurons. In contrast, Caspr2, which mediates Kv1 channel clustering at the juxtaparanode, is not required for localization of Kv1 channels at the AIS. These results show PSD-93 mediates AIS accumulation of Kv1 channels independently of Caspr2. PMID:18509034

  16. Peering into the birth canal during ion channel parturition.

    PubMed

    Trimmer, James S

    2004-10-14

    Recent studies have provided detailed structures of the N-terminal T1 domain of Kv channel alpha subunits that mediates contranslational subunit assembly. In this issue of Neuron, Kosolapov et al. probe T1 domain structure within the ribosomal tunnel. They find that the T1 domain forms secondary structure within the tunnel, in preparation for its immediate role in governing channel assembly upon exit.

  17. Peculiarities of temperature dependent ion beam sputtering and channeling of crystalline bismuth.

    PubMed

    Langegger, Rupert; Hradil, Klaudia; Steiger-Thirsfeld, Andreas; Bertagnolli, Emmerich; Lugstein, Alois

    2014-08-01

    In this paper, we report on the surface evolution of focused ion beam treated single crystalline Bi(001) with respect to different beam incidence angles and channeling effects. 'Erosive' sputtering appears to be the dominant mechanism at room temperature (RT) and diffusion processes during sputtering seem to play only a minor role for the surface evolution of Bi. The sputtering yield of Bi(001) shows anomalous behavior when increasing the beam incidence angle along particular azimuthal angles of the specimen. The behavior of the sputtering yield could be related to channeling effects and the relevant channeling directions are identified. Dynamic annealing processes during ion irradiation retain the crystalline quality of the Bi specimen allowing ion channeling at RT. Lowering the specimen temperature to T = -188 °C reduces dynamic annealing processes and thereby disables channeling effects. Furthermore unexpected features are observed at normal beam incidence angle. Spike-like features appear during the ion beam induced erosion, whose growth directions are not determined by the ion beam but by the channeling directions of the Bi specimen.

  18. Implicit Water Simulations of Non-Equilibrium Charge Transport in Ion Channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravaioli, U.; van der Straaten, T. A.; Kathawala, G.

    Ion channels are natural nano-channels found in the membranes of all living cells, which exhibit a broad range of specific device-like functions to help regulate cell physiology. The study of charge transport in ion channels is imperative to understand how charge regulation is accomplished at the molecular level if one is to develop nanoscale artificial systems that mimic biological function and detection. Although Molecular Dynamics is the most popular approach to simulate ion channel behavior, the computational cost of representing all water molecules and ions in the system is prohibitive to study the timescales required to resolve ionic current and lead to structure design. A hierarchy of models of decreasing complexity is needed to address simulation of different time and space scales, similar to the set of models developed to study transport in semiconductors. This paper discusses the application of Monte Carlo and Drift-diffusion methods to simulate transport in ion channels, using the ompF porin channel as a prototype.

  19. Simulation Studies of Ion Permeation and Selectivity in Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels.

    PubMed

    Ing, C; Pomès, R

    2016-01-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels are responsible for the generation and propagation of action potentials in electrically excitable cells. Molecular dynamics simulations have become a useful tool to study the molecular basis of ion transport in atomistic models of voltage-gated ion channels. The elucidation of several three-dimensional structures of bacterial voltage-gated sodium channels (Nav) in 2011 and 2012 opened the way to detailed computational investigations of this important class of membrane proteins. Here we review the numerous simulation studies of Na(+) permeation and selectivity in bacterial Nav channels published in the past 5years. These studies use a variety of simulation methodologies differing in force field parameters, molecular models, sampling algorithms, and simulation times. Although results disagree on the details of ion permeation mechanisms, they concur in the presence of two primary Na(+) binding sites in the selectivity filter and support a loosely coupled knock-on mechanism of Na(+) permeation. Comparative studies of Na(+), K(+), and Ca(2+) permeation reveal sites within Nav channels that are Na(+) selective, yet a consensus model of selectivity has not been established. We discuss the agreement between simulation and experimental results and propose strategies that may be used to resolve discrepancies between simulation studies in order to improve future computational studies of permeation and selectivity in ion channels. PMID:27586286

  20. Human PIEZO1 Ion Channel Functions as a Split Protein

    PubMed Central

    Bae, Chilman; Suchyna, Thomas M.; Ziegler, Lynn; Sachs, Frederick; Gottlieb, Philip A.

    2016-01-01

    PIEZO1 is a mechanosensitive eukaryotic cation-selective channel that rapidly inactivates in a voltage-dependent manner. We previously showed that a fluorescent protein could be encoded within the hPIEZO1 sequence without loss of function. In this work, we split the channel into two at this site and asked if coexpression would produce a functional channel or whether gating and permeation might be contained in either segment. The split protein was expressed in two segments by a bicistronic plasmid where the first segment spanned residues 1 to 1591, and the second segment spanned 1592 to 2521. When the “split protein” is coexpressed, the parts associate to form a normal channel. We measured the whole-cell, cell-attached and outside-out patch currents in transfected HEK293 cells. Indentation produced whole-cell currents monotonic with the stimulus. Single channel recordings showed voltage-dependent inactivation. The Boltzmann activation curve for outside-out patches had a slope of 8.6/mmHg vs 8.1 for wild type, and a small leftward shift in the midpoint (32 mmHg vs 41 mmHg). The association of the two channel domains was confirmed by FRET measurements of mCherry on the N-terminus and EGFP on the C-terminus. Neither of the individual protein segments produced current when expressed alone. PMID:26963637

  1. Ion channels in synaptic vesicles from Torpedo electric organ.

    PubMed Central

    Rahamimoff, R; DeRiemer, S A; Sakmann, B; Stadler, H; Yakir, N

    1988-01-01

    A simple method has been developed for fusing synaptic vesicles into spherical structures 20-50 micron in diameter. The method has been applied to purified cholinergic synaptic vesicles from Torpedo electric organ, and the membrane properties of these fused structures have been studied by the "cell"-attached version of the patch clamp technique. A large conductance potassium-preferring channel, termed the P channel, was consistently observed in preparations of fused synaptic vesicles. The selectivity of the channel for potassium over sodium was approximately equal to 2.8-fold. Two major conductance levels were observed during P-channel activity, and their relative proportion was dependent on the voltage applied to the membrane through the patch pipette. P channels were not seen in fused preparations of purified Torpedo lipids, nor was the frequency of their occurrence increased in preparations enriched with plasma membrane or nonvesicular membranes. We suggest, therefore, that the P channels are components of the synaptic vesicle membrane. Their function in synaptic transmission physiology is still unknown. Images PMID:2455900

  2. Regulation of Intestinal Glucose Absorption by Ion Channels and Transporters.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lihong; Tuo, Biguang; Dong, Hui

    2016-01-14

    The absorption of glucose is electrogenic in the small intestinal epithelium. The major route for the transport of dietary glucose from intestinal lumen into enterocytes is the Na⁺/glucose cotransporter (SGLT1), although glucose transporter type 2 (GLUT2) may also play a role. The membrane potential of small intestinal epithelial cells (IEC) is important to regulate the activity of SGLT1. The maintenance of membrane potential mainly depends on the activities of cation channels and transporters. While the importance of SGLT1 in glucose absorption has been systemically studied in detail, little is currently known about the regulation of SGLT1 activity by cation channels and transporters. A growing line of evidence suggests that cytosolic calcium ([Ca(2+)]cyt) can regulate the absorption of glucose by adjusting GLUT2 and SGLT1. Moreover, the absorption of glucose and homeostasis of Ca(2+) in IEC are regulated by cation channels and transporters, such as Ca(2+) channels, K⁺ channels, Na⁺/Ca(2+) exchangers, and Na⁺/H⁺ exchangers. In this review, we consider the involvement of these cation channels and transporters in the regulation of glucose uptake in the small intestine. Modulation of them may be a potential strategy for the management of obesity and diabetes.

  3. Substrate Regulation of Single Potassium and Chloride Ion Channels in Arabidopsis Plasma Membrane

    PubMed Central

    Lew, Roger R.

    1991-01-01

    Patch clamp measurements of excised inside-out patches of Arabidopsis thaliana plasma membrane reveal at least two ion channels which conduct either potassium or chloride. The conductance of the potassium channel ranged from 5 to 70 picosiemens depending on KCl concentration. The conductance increased linearly with increasing cytoplasmic-side [KCl]; the extent of this dependence declined as extracytoplasmic-side [KCl] was increased. This indicates that substrate regulation of the potassium channel is a consequence of the molecular architecture of the channel: in particular, multi-ion binding sites within the channel pore. The chloride channel conductance (ranging from 5-40 picosiemens) was independent of cytoplasmic-side [KCl] until a threshold concentration of about 300 millimolar was reached. Such behavior is expected only if the channel is allosterically regulated by cytoplasmic-side K+ and/or Cl−. The median open times of either channel (about 200 milliseconds for the potassium channel and 20 milliseconds for the chloride channel) were unaffected by substrate concentrations. PMID:16668031

  4. Active membrane having uniform physico-chemically functionalized ion channels

    DOEpatents

    Gerald, II, Rex E; Ruscic, Katarina J; Sears, Devin N; Smith, Luis J; Klingler, Robert J; Rathke, Jerome W

    2012-09-24

    The present invention relates to a physicochemically-active porous membrane for electrochemical cells that purports dual functions: an electronic insulator (separator) and a unidirectional ion-transporter (electrolyte). The electrochemical cell membrane is activated for the transport of ions by contiguous ion coordination sites on the interior two-dimensional surfaces of the trans-membrane unidirectional pores. One dimension of the pore surface has a macroscopic length (1 nm-1000 .mu.m) and is directed parallel to the direction of an electric field, which is produced between the cathode and the anode electrodes of an electrochemical cell. The membrane material is designed to have physicochemical interaction with ions. Control of the extent of the interactions between the ions and the interior pore walls of the membrane and other materials, chemicals, or structures contained within the pores provides adjustability of the ionic conductivity of the membrane.

  5. Robustness, Death of Spiral Wave in the Network of Neurons under Partial Ion Channel Block

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ma, Jun; Huang, Long; Wang, Chun-Ni; Pu, Zhong-Sheng

    2013-02-01

    The development of spiral wave in a two-dimensional square array due to partial ion channel block (Potassium, Sodium) is investigated, the dynamics of the node is described by Hodgkin—Huxley neuron and these neurons are coupled with nearest neighbor connection. The parameter ratio xNa (and xK), which defines the ratio of working ion channel number of sodium (potassium) to the total ion channel number of sodium (and potassium), is used to measure the shift conductance induced by channel block. The distribution of statistical variable R in the two-parameter phase space (parameter ratio vs. poisoning area) is extensively calculated to mark the parameter region for transition of spiral wave induced by partial ion channel block, the area with smaller factors of synchronization R is associated the parameter region that spiral wave keeps alive and robust to the channel poisoning. Spiral wave keeps alive when the poisoned area (potassium or sodium) and degree of intoxication are small, distinct transition (death, several spiral waves coexist or multi-arm spiral wave emergence) occurs under moderate ratio xNa (and xK) when the size of blocked area exceeds certain thresholds. Breakup of spiral wave occurs and multi-arm of spiral waves are observed when the channel noise is considered.

  6. Conduits of life's spark: a perspective on ion channel research since the birth of neuron.

    PubMed

    Isacoff, Ehud Y; Jan, Lily Y; Minor, Daniel L

    2013-10-30

    Heartbeats, muscle twitches, and lightning-fast thoughts are all manifestations of bioelectricity and rely on the activity of a class of membrane proteins known as ion channels. The basic function of an ion channel can be distilled into, "The hole opens. Ions go through. The hole closes." Studies of the fundamental mechanisms by which this process happens and the consequences of such activity in the setting of excitable cells remains the central focus of much of the field. One might wonder after so many years of detailed poking at such a seemingly simple process, is there anything left to learn? PMID:24183018

  7. Ion conduction in the KcsA potassium channel analyzed with a minimal kinetic model.

    PubMed

    Mafé, Salvador; Pellicer, Julio

    2005-02-01

    We use a model by Nelson to study the current-voltage and conductance-concentration curves of bacterial potassium channel KcsA without assuming rapid ion translocation. Ion association to the channel filter is rate controlling at low concentrations, but dissociation and transport in the filter can limit conduction at high concentration for ions other than K+. The absolute values of the effective rate constants are tentative but the relative changes in these constants needed to qualitatively explain the experiments should be of significance. PMID:15783362

  8. Ion conduction in the KcsA potassium channel analyzed with a minimal kinetic model.

    PubMed

    Mafé, Salvador; Pellicer, Julio

    2005-02-01

    We use a model by Nelson to study the current-voltage and conductance-concentration curves of bacterial potassium channel KcsA without assuming rapid ion translocation. Ion association to the channel filter is rate controlling at low concentrations, but dissociation and transport in the filter can limit conduction at high concentration for ions other than K+. The absolute values of the effective rate constants are tentative but the relative changes in these constants needed to qualitatively explain the experiments should be of significance.

  9. Molecular simulation studies of hydrophobic gating in nanopores and ion channels.

    PubMed

    Trick, Jemma L; Aryal, Prafulla; Tucker, Stephen J; Sansom, Mark S P

    2015-04-01

    Gating in channels and nanopores plays a key role in regulating flow of ions across membranes. Molecular simulations provide a 'computational microscope' which enables us to examine the physical nature of gating mechanisms at the level of the single channel molecule. Water enclosed within the confines of a nanoscale pore may exhibit unexpected behaviour. In particular, if the molecular surfaces lining the pore are hydrophobic this promotes de-wetting of the pore. De-wetting is observed as stochastic liquid-vapour transitions within a pore, and may lead to functional closure of a pore to the flow of ions and/or water. Such behaviour was first observed in simulations of simple model nanopores and referred to as 'hydrophobic gating'. Simulations of both the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor and of TWIK-1 potassium channels (the latter alongside experimental studies) suggest hydrophobic gating may occur in some biological ion channels. Current studies are focused on designing hydrophobic gates into biomimetic nanopores.

  10. Mechanosensitive ion channels investigated simultaneously by scanning probe microscopy and patch clamp.

    PubMed

    Langer, Matthias G

    2007-01-01

    Mechanosensitive ion channels play an important role for the perception of mechanical signals such as touch, balance, or sound. Here, a new experimental strategy is presented providing well-defined access to single mechanosensitive ion channels in living cells. As a representative example, the investigation of mechanosensitive transduction channels in cochlear hair cells is discussed in detail including all essential technical aspects. Three different techniques were combined: atomic force microscopy (AFM) as a device for local mechanical stimulation, patch clamp for recording the current response of mechanosensitive ion channels, and differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy equipped with an upright water-immersion objective lens. A major challenge was to adapt the mechanical design of the AFM setup to the small working distance of the light microscope and the electrical design of the AFM electronics. Various protocols for the preparation and investigation of the organ of Corti with AFM are presented. PMID:18827992

  11. Insights into the function of ion channels by computational electrophysiology simulations.

    PubMed

    Kutzner, Carsten; Köpfer, David A; Machtens, Jan-Philipp; de Groot, Bert L; Song, Chen; Zachariae, Ulrich

    2016-07-01

    Ion channels are of universal importance for all cell types and play key roles in cellular physiology and pathology. Increased insight into their functional mechanisms is crucial to enable drug design on this important class of membrane proteins, and to enhance our understanding of some of the fundamental features of cells. This review presents the concepts behind the recently developed simulation protocol Computational Electrophysiology (CompEL), which facilitates the atomistic simulation of ion channels in action. In addition, the review provides guidelines for its application in conjunction with the molecular dynamics software package GROMACS. We first lay out the rationale for designing CompEL as a method that models the driving force for ion permeation through channels the way it is established in cells, i.e., by electrochemical ion gradients across the membrane. This is followed by an outline of its implementation and a description of key settings and parameters helpful to users wishing to set up and conduct such simulations. In recent years, key mechanistic and biophysical insights have been obtained by employing the CompEL protocol to address a wide range of questions on ion channels and permeation. We summarize these recent findings on membrane proteins, which span a spectrum from highly ion-selective, narrow channels to wide diffusion pores. Finally we discuss the future potential of CompEL in light of its limitations and strengths. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Membrane Proteins edited by J.C. Gumbart and Sergei Noskov.

  12. Dislocation density of pure copper processed by accumulative roll bonding and equal-channel angular pressing

    SciTech Connect

    Miyajima, Yoji; Okubo, Satoshi; Abe, Hiroki; Okumura, Hiroki; Fujii, Toshiyuki; Onaka, Susumu; Kato, Masaharu

    2015-06-15

    The dislocation density of pure copper fabricated by two severe plastic deformation (SPD) processes, i.e., accumulative roll bonding and equal-channel angular pressing, was evaluated using scanning transmission electron microscopy/transmission electron microscopy observations. The dislocation density drastically increased from ~ 10{sup 13} m{sup −} {sup 2} to about 5 × 10{sup 14} m{sup −} {sup 2}, and then saturated, for both SPD processes.

  13. Using total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy to observe ion channel trafficking and assembly.

    PubMed

    Schwarzer, Sarah; Mashanov, Gregory I; Molloy, Justin E; Tinker, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    Ion channels are integral membrane proteins that allow the flow of ions across membranes down their electrochemical gradients and are a major determinant of cellular excitability. They play an important role in a variety of biological processes as diverse as insulin release from beta cells in the pancreas through to cardiac and smooth muscle contraction. We have used total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy to watch ion channels being transported in vesicles along microtubules within the cytoplasm of the cell. Furthermore, we can directly observe the fusion of these vesicles with the plasma membrane and the release and radial dispersion of single ion channels into the membrane. Finally, automated single-particle tracking of these objects allowed us to determine their diffusional behavior.

  14. Chemoselective tarantula toxins report voltage activation of wild-type ion channels in live cells.

    PubMed

    Tilley, Drew C; Eum, Kenneth S; Fletcher-Taylor, Sebastian; Austin, Daniel C; Dupré, Christophe; Patrón, Lilian A; Garcia, Rita L; Lam, Kit; Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Cohen, Bruce E; Sack, Jon T

    2014-11-01

    Electrically excitable cells, such as neurons, exhibit tremendous diversity in their firing patterns, a consequence of the complex collection of ion channels present in any specific cell. Although numerous methods are capable of measuring cellular electrical signals, understanding which types of ion channels give rise to these signals remains a significant challenge. Here, we describe exogenous probes which use a novel mechanism to report activity of voltage-gated channels. We have synthesized chemoselective derivatives of the tarantula toxin guangxitoxin-1E (GxTX), an inhibitory cystine knot peptide that binds selectively to Kv2-type voltage gated potassium channels. We find that voltage activation of Kv2.1 channels triggers GxTX dissociation, and thus GxTX binding dynamically marks Kv2 activation. We identify GxTX residues that can be replaced by thiol- or alkyne-bearing amino acids, without disrupting toxin folding or activity, and chemoselectively ligate fluorophores or affinity probes to these sites. We find that GxTX-fluorophore conjugates colocalize with Kv2.1 clusters in live cells and are released from channels activated by voltage stimuli. Kv2.1 activation can be detected with concentrations of probe that have a trivial impact on cellular currents. Chemoselective GxTX mutants conjugated to dendrimeric beads likewise bind live cells expressing Kv2.1, and the beads are released by channel activation. These optical sensors of conformational change are prototype probes that can indicate when ion channels contribute to electrical signaling. PMID:25331865

  15. Tarantula toxins use common surfaces for interacting with Kv and ASIC ion channels.

    PubMed

    Gupta, Kanchan; Zamanian, Maryam; Bae, Chanhyung; Milescu, Mirela; Krepkiy, Dmitriy; Tilley, Drew C; Sack, Jon T; Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Kim, Jae Il; Swartz, Kenton J

    2015-01-01

    Tarantula toxins that bind to voltage-sensing domains of voltage-activated ion channels are thought to partition into the membrane and bind to the channel within the bilayer. While no structures of a voltage-sensor toxin bound to a channel have been solved, a structural homolog, psalmotoxin (PcTx1), was recently crystalized in complex with the extracellular domain of an acid sensing ion channel (ASIC). In the present study we use spectroscopic, biophysical and computational approaches to compare membrane interaction properties and channel binding surfaces of PcTx1 with the voltage-sensor toxin guangxitoxin (GxTx-1E). Our results show that both types of tarantula toxins interact with membranes, but that voltage-sensor toxins partition deeper into the bilayer. In addition, our results suggest that tarantula toxins have evolved a similar concave surface for clamping onto α-helices that is effective in aqueous or lipidic physical environments. PMID:25948544

  16. Engineering a Transmembrane Nanopore Ion Channel from a Membrane Breaker Peptide.

    PubMed

    Lella, Muralikrishna; Mahalakshmi, Radhakrishnan

    2016-07-01

    Re-engineering nature's molecules is an ideal strategy to obtain explicit functionality such as synthetic molecular machines, yet novel strategies for producing engineered molecular channels are few. Here we report a peptide engineering strategy through sequence reversal, which we applied on the first transmembrane peptide of the mycobacteriophage membranoporin protein holin. We have successfully redesigned the membrane rupture property of this peptide to form specific nanopore ion channels. We report the structural characterization and electrophysiology measurements of a library of 28-residue engineered membrane peptides, with remarkable ion channel behavior. We further identify that key residues at the peptide terminus, the central proline, charge distribution, and hydropathy index of the peptide together contribute to the channel properties that we measure. Our sequence reversal strategy for peptide engineering to successfully obtain nanopore channels can pave the way for better biobased design of controlled nanopores, using only natural amino acids. PMID:27257735

  17. Mechanistic signs of double-barreled structure in a fluoride ion channel.

    PubMed

    Last, Nicholas B; Kolmakova-Partensky, Ludmila; Shane, Tania; Miller, Christopher

    2016-01-01

    The Fluc family of F(-) ion channels protects prokaryotes and lower eukaryotes from the toxicity of environmental F(-). In bacteria, these channels are built as dual-topology dimers whereby the two subunits assemble in antiparallel transmembrane orientation. Recent crystal structures suggested that Fluc channels contain two separate ion-conduction pathways, each with two F(-) binding sites, but no functional correlates of this unusual architecture have been reported. Experiments here fill this gap by examining the consequences of mutating two conserved F(-)-coordinating phenylalanine residues. Substitution of each phenylalanine specifically extinguishes its associated F(-) binding site in crystal structures and concomitantly inhibits F(-) permeation. Functional analysis of concatemeric channels, which permit mutagenic manipulation of individual pores, show that each pore can be separately inactivated without blocking F(-) conduction through its symmetry-related twin. The results strongly support dual-pathway architecture of Fluc channels. PMID:27449280

  18. C-fiber recovery cycle supernormality depends on ion concentration and ion channel permeability.

    PubMed

    Tigerholm, Jenny; Petersson, Marcus E; Obreja, Otilia; Eberhardt, Esther; Namer, Barbara; Weidner, Christian; Lampert, Angelika; Carr, Richard W; Schmelz, Martin; Fransén, Erik

    2015-03-10

    Following each action potential, C-fiber nociceptors undergo cyclical changes in excitability, including a period of superexcitability, before recovering their basal excitability state. The increase in superexcitability during this recovery cycle depends upon their immediate firing history of the axon, but also determines the instantaneous firing frequency that encodes pain intensity. To explore the mechanistic underpinnings of the recovery cycle phenomenon a biophysical model of a C-fiber has been developed. The model represents the spatial extent of the axon including its passive properties as well as ion channels and the Na/K-ATPase ion pump. Ionic concentrations were represented inside and outside the membrane. The model was able to replicate the typical transitions in excitability from subnormal to supernormal observed empirically following a conducted action potential. In the model, supernormality depended on the degree of conduction slowing which in turn depends upon the frequency of stimulation, in accordance with experimental findings. In particular, we show that activity-dependent conduction slowing is produced by the accumulation of intraaxonal sodium. We further show that the supernormal phase results from a reduced potassium current Kdr as a result of accumulation of periaxonal potassium in concert with a reduced influx of sodium through Nav1.7 relative to Nav1.8 current. This theoretical prediction was supported by data from an in vitro preparation of small rat dorsal root ganglion somata showing a reduction in the magnitude of tetrodotoxin-sensitive relative to tetrodotoxin -resistant whole cell current. Furthermore, our studies provide support for the role of depolarization in supernormality, as previously suggested, but we suggest that the basic mechanism depends on changes in ionic concentrations inside and outside the axon. The understanding of the mechanisms underlying repetitive discharges in recovery cycles may provide insight into mechanisms

  19. Molecular dynamics and brownian dynamics investigation of ion permeation and anesthetic halothane effects on a proton-gated ion channel.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Mary Hongying; Coalson, Rob D; Tang, Pei

    2010-11-24

    Bacterial Gloeobacter violaceus pentameric ligand-gated ion channel (GLIC) is activated to cation permeation upon lowering the solution pH. Its function can be modulated by anesthetic halothane. In the present work, we integrate molecular dynamics (MD) and Brownian dynamics (BD) simulations to elucidate the ion conduction, charge selectivity, and halothane modulation mechanisms in GLIC, based on recently resolved X-ray crystal structures of the open-channel GLIC. MD calculations of the potential of mean force (PMF) for a Na(+) revealed two energy barriers in the extracellular domain (R109 and K38) and at the hydrophobic gate of transmembrane domain (I233), respectively. An energy well for Na(+) was near the intracellular entrance: the depth of this energy well was modulated strongly by the protonation state of E222. The energy barrier for Cl(-) was found to be 3-4 times higher than that for Na(+). Ion permeation characteristics were determined through BD simulations using a hybrid MD/continuum electrostatics approach to evaluate the energy profiles governing the ion movement. The resultant channel conductance and a near-zero permeability ratio (P(Cl)/P(Na)) were comparable to experimental data. On the basis of these calculations, we suggest that a ring of five E222 residues may act as an electrostatic gate. In addition, the hydrophobic gate region may play a role in charge selectivity due to a higher dehydration energy barrier for Cl(-) ions. The effect of halothane on the Na(+) PMF was also evaluated. Halothane was found to perturb salt bridges in GLIC that may be crucial for channel gating and open-channel stability, but had no significant impact on the single ion PMF profiles.

  20. K3 fragment of amyloidogenic beta(2)-microglobulin forms ion channels: implication for dialysis related amyloidosis.

    PubMed

    Mustata, Mirela; Capone, Ricardo; Jang, Hyunbum; Arce, Fernando Teran; Ramachandran, Srinivasan; Lal, Ratnesh; Nussinov, Ruth

    2009-10-21

    Beta(2)-microglobulin (beta(2)m) amyloid deposits are linked to dialysis-related amyloidosis (DRA) in hemodialysis patients. The mechanism by which beta(2)m causes DRA is not understood. It is also unclear whether only the full-length beta(2)m induces pathophysiology or if proteolytic fragments are sufficient for inducing this effect. Ser20-Lys41 (K3) is a digestion fragment of full-length beta(2)m. Solid state NMR (ssNMR) combined with X-ray diffraction and atomic force microscopy (AFM) revealed the characteristic oligomeric amyloid conformation of the U-turn beta-strand-turn-beta-strand motif stacked in parallel and stabilized by intermolecular interactions also shown by Abeta(9-40)/Abeta(17-42) and the CA150 WW domain. Here we use the K3 U-turn atomic coordinates and molecular dynamic (MD) simulations to model K3 channels in the membrane. Consistent with previous AFM imaging of other amyloids that show channel-like structures in the membrane, in the simulations K3 also forms ion channels with 3-6 loosely attached mobile subunits. We carry out AFM, single channel electrical recording, and fluorescence imaging experiments. AFM images display 3D ion channel topography with shapes, morphologies, and dimensions consistent with the theoretical model. Electrical conductance measurements indicate multiple single channel conductances, suggesting that various K3 oligomer sizes can constitute the channel structure. Fluorescence measurements in kidney cells show channel-mediated cell calcium uptake. These results suggest that the beta(2)m-induced DRA can be mediated by ion channels formed by its K3 fragment. Because the beta-strand-turn-beta-strand motif appears to be a universal amyloid feature, its ability to form ion channels further suggests that the motif may play a generic role in toxicity.

  1. Atomic mutagenesis in ion channels with engineered stoichiometry

    PubMed Central

    Lueck, John D; Mackey, Adam L; Infield, Daniel T; Galpin, Jason D; Li, Jing; Roux, Benoît; Ahern, Christopher A

    2016-01-01

    C-type inactivation of potassium channels fine-tunes the electrical signaling in excitable cells through an internal timing mechanism that is mediated by a hydrogen bond network in the channels' selectively filter. Previously, we used nonsense suppression to highlight the role of the conserved Trp434-Asp447 indole hydrogen bond in Shaker potassium channels with a non-hydrogen bonding homologue of tryptophan, Ind (Pless et al., 2013). Here, molecular dynamics simulations indicate that the Trp434Ind hydrogen bonding partner, Asp447, unexpectedly 'flips out' towards the extracellular environment, allowing water to penetrate the space behind the selectivity filter while simultaneously reducing the local negative electrostatic charge. Additionally, a protein engineering approach is presented whereby split intein sequences are flanked by endoplasmic reticulum retention/retrieval motifs (ERret) are incorporated into the N- or C- termini of Shaker monomers or within sodium channels two-domain fragments. This system enabled stoichiometric control of Shaker monomers and the encoding of multiple amino acids within a channel tetramer. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.18976.001 PMID:27710770

  2. Long pulse acceleration of MeV class high power density negative H{sup −} ion beam for ITER

    SciTech Connect

    Umeda, N. Kojima, A.; Kashiwagi, M.; Tobari, H.; Hiratsuka, J.; Watanabe, K.; Dairaku, M.; Yamanaka, H.; Hanada, M.

    2015-04-08

    R and D of high power density negative ion beam acceleration has been carried out at MeV test facility in JAEA to realize ITER neutral beam accelerator. The main target is H{sup −} ion beam acceleration up to 1 MeV with 200 A/m{sup 2} for 60 s whose pulse length is the present facility limit. For long pulse acceleration at high power density, new extraction grid (EXG) has been developed with high cooling capability, which electron suppression magnet is placed under cooling channel similar to ITER. In addition, aperture size of electron suppression grid (ESG) is enlarged from 14 mm to 16 mm to reduce direct interception on the ESG and emission of secondary electron which leads to high heat load on the upstream acceleration grid. By enlarging ESG aperture, beam current increased 10 % at high current beam and total acceleration grid heat load reduced from 13 % to 10 % of input power at long pulse beam. In addition, heat load by back stream positive ion into the EXG is measured for the first time and is estimated as 0.3 % of beam power, while heat load by back stream ion into the source chamber is estimated as 3.5 ~ 4.0 % of beam power. Beam acceleration up to 60 s which is the facility limit, has achieved at 683 keV, 100 A/m{sup 2} of negative ion beam, whose energy density increases two orders of magnitude since 2011.

  3. Dynamics of Braided Channels, Bars, and Associated Deposits Under Experimental Density Currents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Limaye, A. B. S.; Jean-Louis, G.; Paola, C.

    2015-12-01

    Turbidity currents are the principal agents that transfer clastic sediment from continental margins to the deep ocean. The extensive sedimentary deposits that result can record influences from fluvial transport, ocean currents, and seafloor bathymetry; decoding these controls is key to understanding long-term continental denudation and the formation of hydrocarbon reservoirs. Experimental turbidity currents often use pre-formed, single-thread channels, but more recent experiments and seafloor observations suggest that braided channels also develop in submarine environments. Yet controls on the formation of submarine braided channels and relationships between these channels and stratigraphic evolution remain largely untested. We have conducted a series of experiments to determine the conditions conducive to forming braided submarine channels, and to relate channel geometry and kinematics to deposit architecture. Dissolved salt supplies the excess density of the experimental turbidity currents, which transport plastic, sand-sized sediment as bedload across a test section two meters long and one meter wide. Our experiments indicate that braided channels can form as constructional features without prior erosion for a range of input water and sediment fluxes. Channel migration, avulsion, and aggradation construct sedimentary deposits with bars at a variety of scales. Bar geometry and channel kinematics are qualitatively similar under subaerial and subaqueous experiments with other parameters fixed. We will present quantitative analyses of the relationships between channel geometry and mobility and deposit architecture, at scales from individual bars to the entire deposit, and compare these results to control experiments with subaerial braiding. These experimental results suggest parallels between subaerial and subaqueous braiding, and help to constrain forward models for stratigraphic evolution and inverse methods for estimating flow conditions from turbidites.

  4. TRP ion channels in thermosensation, thermoregulation and metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hong; Siemens, Jan

    2015-01-01

    In humans, the TRP superfamily of cation channels includes 27 related molecules that respond to a remarkable variety of chemical and physical stimuli. While physiological roles for many TRP channels remain unknown, over the past years several have been shown to function as molecular sensors in organisms ranging from yeast to humans. In particular, TRP channels are now known to constitute important components of sensory systems, where they participate in the detection or transduction of osmotic, mechanical, thermal, or chemosensory stimuli. We here summarize our current understanding of the role individual members of this versatile receptor family play in thermosensation and thermoregulation, and also touch upon their immerging role in metabolic control. PMID:27227022

  5. TRP ion channels in thermosensation, thermoregulation and metabolism.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hong; Siemens, Jan

    2015-01-01

    In humans, the TRP superfamily of cation channels includes 27 related molecules that respond to a remarkable variety of chemical and physical stimuli. While physiological roles for many TRP channels remain unknown, over the past years several have been shown to function as molecular sensors in organisms ranging from yeast to humans. In particular, TRP channels are now known to constitute important components of sensory systems, where they participate in the detection or transduction of osmotic, mechanical, thermal, or chemosensory stimuli. We here summarize our current understanding of the role individual members of this versatile receptor family play in thermosensation and thermoregulation, and also touch upon their immerging role in metabolic control. PMID:27227022

  6. Domain-based identification and analysis of glutamate receptor ion channels and their relatives in prokaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ger, Mao-Feng; Rendon, Gloria; Tilson, Jeffrey L; Jakobsson, Eric

    2010-10-06

    Voltage-gated and ligand-gated ion channels are used in eukaryotic organisms for the purpose of electrochemical signaling. There are prokaryotic homologues to major eukaryotic channels of these sorts, including voltage-gated sodium, potassium, and calcium channels, Ach-receptor and glutamate-receptor channels. The prokaryotic homologues have been less well characterized functionally than their eukaryotic counterparts. In this study we identify likely prokaryotic functional counterparts of eukaryotic glutamate receptor channels by comprehensive analysis of the prokaryotic sequences in the context of known functional domains present in the eukaryotic members of this family. In particular, we searched the nonredundant protein database for all proteins containing the following motif: the two sections of the extracellular glutamate binding domain flanking two transmembrane helices. We discovered 100 prokaryotic sequences containing this motif, with a wide variety of functional annotations. Two groups within this family have the same topology as eukaryotic glutamate receptor channels. Group 1 has a potassium-like selectivity filter. Group 2 is most closely related to eukaryotic glutamate receptor channels. We present analysis of the functional domain architecture for the group of 100, a putative phylogenetic tree, comparison of the protein phylogeny with the corresponding species phylogeny, consideration of the distribution of these proteins among classes of prokaryotes, and orthologous relationships between prokaryotic and human glutamate receptor channels. We introduce a construct called the Evolutionary Domain Network, which represents a putative pathway of domain rearrangements underlying the domain composition of present channels. We believe that scientists interested in ion channels in general, and ligand-gated ion channels in particular, will be interested in this work. The work should also be of interest to bioinformatics researchers who are interested in the use

  7. Stochastic pumping of ions based on colored noise in bacterial channels under acidic stress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    López, M. Lidón; Queralt-Martín, María; Alcaraz, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    Fluctuation-driven ion transport can be obtained in bacterial channels with the aid of different types of colored noise including the biologically relevant Lorentzian one. Using the electrochemical rectification of the channel current as a ratchet mechanism we observe transport of ions up to their concentration gradient under conditions similar to that met in vivo, namely moderate pH gradients and asymmetrically charged lipid membranes. We find that depending on the direction of the concentration gradient the channel can pump either cations or anions from the diluted side to the concentrated one. We discuss the possible relevance of this phenomenon for the pH homeostasis of bacterial cells.Fluctuation-driven ion transport can be obtained in bacterial channels with the aid of different types of colored noise including the biologically relevant Lorentzian one. Using the electrochemical rectification of the channel current as a ratchet mechanism we observe transport of ions up to their concentration gradient under conditions similar to that met in vivo, namely moderate pH gradients and asymmetrically charged lipid membranes. We find that depending on the direction of the concentration gradient the channel can pump either cations or anions from the diluted side to the concentrated one. We discuss the possible relevance of this phenomenon for the pH homeostasis of bacterial cells. Electronic supplementary information (ESI) available. See DOI: 10.1039/c6nr02638a

  8. High quality ion channel analysis on a chip with the NPC technology.

    PubMed

    Brüggemann, A; George, M; Klau, M; Beckler, M; Steindl, J; Behrends, J C; Fertig, N

    2003-10-01

    In evaluating ion channel function, electrophysiology, e.g., patch clamping, provides the highest information content. For the analysis of ion channel-modulating compounds, one variant of the patch-clamp technique, the whole-cell configuration, is particularly useful. We present here patch-clamp recordings in the whole-cell configuration and single channel recordings performed with planar patch-clamp chips, which are microstructured from borosilicate glass substrate. The chips are used in the Port-a-Patch, an ion channel research/screening instrument that enables automated patch-clamp experiments on a single cell. A software runs the experiment by executing user-determined protocols for cell positioning, as well as for electrical stimulation and current readout. In various electrophysiological experiments, the high quality of recordings and the versatility of the perfusion of the recorded cells are demonstrated. Quantitative pharmacological experiments are performed on sodium channels expressed in HEK cells using solution volumes in the low microliter range. The exceptionally low volume consumption in the experiments make the system attractive for work on rare or expensive compounds. Due to the low volumes necessary, a rapid solution exchange is facilitated, which is shown on RBL cells. The patch-clamp chip enables a rapid and precise perfusion, allowing sophisticated investigations on ion channel function with the Port-a-Patch. PMID:15090239

  9. Efficiency enhancement in free-electron laser amplifier with one dimensional helical wiggler and ion-channel guiding

    SciTech Connect

    Jafari Bahman, F.; Maraghechi, B.

    2012-01-15

    A method for efficiency enhancement in free-electron laser is studied which uses both tapered wiggler magnetic field and ion-channel density. Derivation of a set of nonlinear and coupled differential equations leads to the self-consistent description of the evolution of both an ensemble of electrons and the electromagnetic radiation. Numerical solution of these equations reveals considerable enhancements of the interaction efficiency. In order to obtain a better insight into physical basis of the problem, a modified pendulum equation for the interaction is derived and a small signal theory of the efficiency enhancement is developed.

  10. Dispersion characteristics of the electromagnetic waves in a relativistic electron beam guided by the ion channel

    SciTech Connect

    Mirzanejhad, Saeed; Sohbatzadeh, Farshad; Ghasemi, Maede; Sedaghat, Zeinab; Mahdian, Zeinab

    2010-05-15

    In this article, the dispersion characteristics of the paraxial (near axis) electromagnetic (EM) waves in a relativistic electron beam guided by the ion channel are investigated. Equilibrium fields such as ion-channel electrostatic field and self-fields of relativistic electron beam are included in this formalism. In accordance with the equilibrium field structure, radial and azimuthal waves are selected as base vectors for EM waves. It is shown that the dispersion of the radially polarized EM and space charge waves are influenced by the equilibrium fields, but azimuthally polarized wave remain unaffected. In some wave number domains, the radially polarized EM and fast space charge waves are coupled. In these regions, instability is analyzed as a function of equilibrium structure. It is shown that the total equilibrium radial force due to the ion channel and electron beam and also relativistic effect play a key role in the coupling of the radially polarized EM wave and space charge wave. Furthermore, some asymptotic behaviors such as weak and strong ion channel, nonrelativistic case and cutoff frequencies are discussed. This instability could be used as an amplification mechanism for radially polarized EM waves in a beam-plasma system where a relativistic electron beam is guided by the ion channel.

  11. Selectivity and permeation in calcium release channel of cardiac muscle: alkali metal ions.

    PubMed Central

    Chen, D P; Xu, L; Tripathy, A; Meissner, G; Eisenberg, B

    1999-01-01

    Current was measured from single open channels of the calcium release channel (CRC) of cardiac sarcoplasmic reticulum (over the range +/-180 mV) in pure and mixed solutions (e.g., biionic conditions) of the alkali metal ions Li+, K+, Na+, Rb+, Cs+, ranging in concentration from 25 mM to 2 M. The current-voltage (I-V) relations were analyzed by an extension of the Poisson-Nernst-Planck (PNP) formulation of electrodiffusion, which includes local chemical interaction described by an offset in chemical potential, which likely reflects the difference in dehydration/solvation/rehydration energies in the entry/exit steps of permeation. The theory fits all of the data with few adjustable parameters: the diffusion coefficient of each ion species, the average effective charge distribution on the wall of the pore, and an offset in chemical potential for lithium and sodium ions. In particular, the theory explains the discrepancy between "selectivities" defined by conductance sequence and "selectivities" determined by the permeability ratios (i.e., reversal potentials) in biionic conditions. The extended PNP formulation seems to offer a successful combined treatment of selectivity and permeation. Conductance selectivity in this channel arises mostly from friction: different species of ions have different diffusion coefficients in the channel. Permeability selectivity of an ion is determined by its electrochemical potential gradient and local chemical interaction with the channel. Neither selectivity (in CRC) seems to involve different electrostatic interaction of different ions with the channel protein, even though the ions have widely varying diameters. PMID:10049318

  12. Optical electrophysiology for probing function and pharmacology of voltage-gated ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hongkang; Reichert, Elaine; Cohen, Adam E

    2016-01-01

    Voltage-gated ion channels mediate electrical dynamics in excitable tissues and are an important class of drug targets. Channels can gate in sub-millisecond timescales, show complex manifolds of conformational states, and often show state-dependent pharmacology. Mechanistic studies of ion channels typically involve sophisticated voltage-clamp protocols applied through manual or automated electrophysiology. Here, we develop all-optical electrophysiology techniques to study activity-dependent modulation of ion channels, in a format compatible with high-throughput screening. Using optical electrophysiology, we recapitulate many voltage-clamp protocols and apply to Nav1.7, a channel implicated in pain. Optical measurements reveal that a sustained depolarization strongly potentiates the inhibitory effect of PF-04856264, a Nav1.7-specific blocker. In a pilot screen, we stratify a library of 320 FDA-approved compounds by binding mechanism and kinetics, and find close concordance with patch clamp measurements. Optical electrophysiology provides a favorable tradeoff between throughput and information content for studies of NaV channels, and possibly other voltage-gated channels. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.15202.001 PMID:27215841

  13. Probing Ion Channel Conformational Dynamics Using Simultaneous Single-Molecule Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Patch-Champ Electric Recording

    SciTech Connect

    Harms, Gregory S.; Orr, Galya; Lu, H Peter

    2004-03-08

    A new approach to probing single-molecule ion channel kinetics and conformational dynamics, patch-clamp confocal fluorescence microscopy (PCCFM), uses simultaneous ultrafast fluorescence spectroscopy and single-channel electric current recording.

  14. Nasal Potential Difference Measurements to Assess CFTR Ion Channel Activity

    PubMed Central

    Clancy, Jean-Paul; Wilschanski, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Nasal potential difference is used to measure the voltage across the nasal epithelium, which results from transepithelial ion transport and reflects in part CFTR function. The electrophysiologic abnormality in cystic fibrosis was first described 30 years ago and correlates with features of the CF phenotype. NPD is an important in vivo research and diagnostic tool, and is used to assess the efficacy of new treatments such as gene therapy and ion transport modulators. This chapter will elaborate on the electrophysiological principles behind the test, the equipment required, the methods, and the analysis of the data. PMID:21594779

  15. Supramolecular Assemblies and Localized Regulation of Voltage-Gated Ion Channels

    PubMed Central

    Dai, Shuiping; Hall, Duane D.; Hell, Johannes W.

    2009-01-01

    This review addresses the localized regulation of voltage-gated ion channels by phosphorylation. Comprehensive data on channel regulation by associated protein kinases, phosphatases, and related regulatory proteins are mainly available for voltage-gated Ca2+ channels, which form the main focus of this review. Other voltage-gated ion channels and especially Kv7.1-3 (KCNQ1-3), the large- and small-conductance Ca2+-activated K+ channels BK and SK2, and the inward-rectifying K+ channels Kir3 have also been studied to quite some extent and will be included. Regulation of the L-type Ca2+ channel Cav1.2 by PKA has been studied most thoroughly as it underlies the cardiac fight-or-flight response. A prototypical Cav1.2 signaling complex containing the β2 adrenergic receptor, the heterotrimeric G protein Gs, adenylyl cyclase, and PKA has been identified that supports highly localized via cAMP. The type 2 ryanodine receptor as well as AMPA- and NMDA-type glutamate receptors are in close proximity to Cav1.2 in cardiomyocytes and neurons, respectively, yet independently anchor PKA, CaMKII, and the serine/threonine phosphatases PP1, PP2A, and PP2B, as is discussed in detail. Descriptions of the structural and functional aspects of the interactions of PKA, PKC, CaMKII, Src, and various phosphatases with Cav1.2 will include comparisons with analogous interactions with other channels such as the ryanodine receptor or ionotropic glutamate receptors. Regulation of Na+ and K+ channel phosphorylation complexes will be discussed in separate papers. This review is thus intended for readers interested in ion channel regulation or in localization of kinases, phosphatases, and their upstream regulators. PMID:19342611

  16. Dopamine modulates the kinetics of ion channels gated by excitatory amino acids in retinal horizontal cells.

    PubMed Central

    Knapp, A G; Schmidt, K F; Dowling, J E

    1990-01-01

    Upon exposure to dopamine, cultured teleost retinal horizontal cells become more responsive to the putative photoreceptor neurotransmitter L-glutamate and to its analog kainate. We have recorded unitary and whole-cell currents to determine the mechanism by which dopamine enhances ion channels activated by these agents. In single-channel recordings from cell-attached patches with agonist in the patch pipette, the frequency of 5- to 10-pS unitary events, but not their amplitude, increased by as much as 150% after application of dopamine to the rest of the cell. The duration of channel openings also increased somewhat, by 20-30%. In whole-cell experiments, agonists with and without dopamine were applied to voltage-clamped horizontal cells by slow superfusion. Analysis of whole-cell current variance as a function of mean current indicated that dopamine increased the probability of channel opening for a give agonist concentration without changing the amount of current passed by an individual channel. For kainate, noise analysis additionally demonstrated that dopamine did not alter the number of functional channels. Dopamine also increased a slow spectral component of whole-cell currents elicited by kainate or glutamate, suggesting a change in the open-time kinetics of the channels. This effect was more pronounced for currents induced by glutamate than for those induced by kainate. We conclude that dopamine potentiates the activity of horizontal cell glutamate receptors by altering the kinetics of the ion channel to favor the open state. PMID:1689053

  17. In situ, Reversible Gating of a Mechanosensitive Ion Channel through Protein-Lipid Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Dimitrova, Anna; Walko, Martin; Hashemi Shabestari, Maryam; Kumar, Pravin; Huber, Martina; Kocer, Armagan

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the functioning of ion channels, as well as utilizing their properties for biochemical applications requires control over channel activity. Herein we report a reversible control over the functioning of a mechanosensitive ion channel by interfering with its interaction with the lipid bilayer. The mechanosensitive channel of large conductance from Escherichia coli is reconstituted into liposomes and activated to its different sub-open states by titrating lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) into the lipid bilayer. Activated channels are closed back by the removal of LPC out of the membrane by bovine serum albumin (BSA). Electron paramagnetic resonance spectra showed the LPC-dose-dependent gradual opening of the channel pore in the form of incrementally increasing spin label mobility and decreasing spin-spin interaction. A method to reversibly open and close mechanosensitive channels to distinct sub-open conformations during their journey from the closed to the fully open state enables detailed structural studies to follow the conformational changes during channel functioning. The ability of BSA to revert the action of LPC opens new perspectives for the functional studies of other membrane proteins that are known to be activated by LPC. PMID:27708587

  18. Ion channel stability of Gramicidin A in lipid bilayers: effect of hydrophobic mismatch.

    PubMed

    Basu, Ipsita; Chattopadhyay, Amitabha; Mukhopadhyay, Chaitali

    2014-01-01

    Hydrophobic mismatch which is defined as the difference between the lipid hydrophobic thickness and the peptide hydrophobic length is known to be responsible in altering the lipid/protein dynamics. Gramicidin A (gA), a 15 residue β helical peptide which is well recognized to form ion conducting channels in lipid bilayer, may change its structure and function in a hydrophobic mismatched condition. We have performed molecular dynamics simulations of gA dimer in phospholipid bilayers to investigate whether or not the conversion from channel to non-channel form of gA dimer would occur under extreme negative hydrophobic mismatch. By varying the length of lipid bilayers from DLPC (1, 2-Dilauroyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine) to DAPC (1, 2-Diarachidoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine), a broad range of mismatch was considered from nearly matching to extremely negative. Our simulations revealed that though the ion-channel conformation is retained by gA under a lesser mismatched situation, in extremely negative mismatched situation, in addition to bilayer thinning, the conformation of gA is changed and converted to a non-channel one. Our results demonstrate that although the channel conformation of Gramicidin A is the most stable structure, it is possible for gA to change its conformation from channel to non-channel depending upon the local environment of host bilayers.

  19. Multi-ion occupancy alters gating in high-conductance, Ca(2+)-activated K+ channels

    PubMed Central

    1991-01-01

    In this study, single-channel recordings of high-conductance Ca(2+)- activated K+ channels from rat skeletal muscle inserted into planar lipid bilayer were used to analyze the effects of two ionic blockers, Ba2+ and Na+, on the channel's gating reactions. The gating equilibrium of the Ba(2+)-blocked channel was investigated through the kinetics of the discrete blockade induced by Ba2+ ions. Gating properties of Na(+)- blocked channels could be directly characterized due to the very high rates of Na+ blocking/unblocking reactions. While in the presence of K+ (5 mM) in the external solution Ba2+ is known to stabilize the open state of the blocked channel (Miller, C., R. Latorre, and I. Reisin. 1987. J. Gen. Physiol. 90:427-449), we show that the divalent blocker stabilizes the closed-blocked state if permeant ions are removed from the external solution (K+ less than 10 microM). Ionic substitutions in the outer solution induce changes in the gating equilibrium of the Ba(2+)-blocked channel that are tightly correlated to the inhibition of Ba2+ dissociation by external monovalent cations. In permeant ion-free external solutions, blockade of the channel by internal Na+ induces a shift (around 15 mV) in the open probability--voltage curve toward more depolarized potentials, indicating that Na+ induces a stabilization of the closed-blocked state, as does Ba2+ under the same conditions. A kinetic analysis of the Na(+)-blocked channel indicates that the closed- blocked state is favored mainly by a decrease in opening rate. Addition of 1 mM external K+ completely inhibits the shift in the activation curve without affecting the Na(+)-induced reduction in the apparent single-channel amplitude. The results suggest that in the absence of external permeant ions internal blockers regulate the permeant ion occupancy of a site near the outer end of the channel. Occupancy of this site appears to modulate gating primarily by speeding the rate of channel opening. PMID:2056305

  20. Numerical methods for a Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi model of biological ion channels.

    PubMed

    Liu, Jinn-Liang; Eisenberg, Bob

    2015-07-01

    Numerical methods are proposed for an advanced Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi (PNPF) model for studying ion transport through biological ion channels. PNPF contains many more correlations than most models and simulations of channels, because it includes water and calculates dielectric properties consistently as outputs. This model accounts for the steric effect of ions and water molecules with different sizes and interstitial voids, the correlation effect of crowded ions with different valences, and the screening effect of polarized water molecules in an inhomogeneous aqueous electrolyte. The steric energy is shown to be comparable to the electrical energy under physiological conditions, demonstrating the crucial role of the excluded volume of particles and the voids in the natural function of channel proteins. Water is shown to play a critical role in both correlation and steric effects in the model. We extend the classical Scharfetter-Gummel (SG) method for semiconductor devices to include the steric potential for ion channels, which is a fundamental physical property not present in semiconductors. Together with a simplified matched interface and boundary (SMIB) method for treating molecular surfaces and singular charges of channel proteins, the extended SG method is shown to exhibit important features in flow simulations such as optimal convergence, efficient nonlinear iterations, and physical conservation. The generalized SG stability condition shows why the standard discretization (without SG exponential fitting) of NP equations may fail and that divalent Ca(2+) may cause more unstable discrete Ca(2+) fluxes than that of monovalent Na(+). Two different methods-called the SMIB and multiscale methods-are proposed for two different types of channels, namely, the gramicidin A channel and an L-type calcium channel, depending on whether water is allowed to pass through the channel. Numerical methods are first validated with constructed models whose exact solutions are

  1. Numerical methods for a Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi model of biological ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Jinn-Liang; Eisenberg, Bob

    2015-07-01

    Numerical methods are proposed for an advanced Poisson-Nernst-Planck-Fermi (PNPF) model for studying ion transport through biological ion channels. PNPF contains many more correlations than most models and simulations of channels, because it includes water and calculates dielectric properties consistently as outputs. This model accounts for the steric effect of ions and water molecules with different sizes and interstitial voids, the correlation effect of crowded ions with different valences, and the screening effect of polarized water molecules in an inhomogeneous aqueous electrolyte. The steric energy is shown to be comparable to the electrical energy under physiological conditions, demonstrating the crucial role of the excluded volume of particles and the voids in the natural function of channel proteins. Water is shown to play a critical role in both correlation and steric effects in the model. We extend the classical Scharfetter-Gummel (SG) method for semiconductor devices to include the steric potential for ion channels, which is a fundamental physical property not present in semiconductors. Together with a simplified matched interface and boundary (SMIB) method for treating molecular surfaces and singular charges of channel proteins, the extended SG method is shown to exhibit important features in flow simulations such as optimal convergence, efficient nonlinear iterations, and physical conservation. The generalized SG stability condition shows why the standard discretization (without SG exponential fitting) of NP equations may fail and that divalent Ca2 + may cause more unstable discrete Ca2 + fluxes than that of monovalent Na+. Two different methods—called the SMIB and multiscale methods—are proposed for two different types of channels, namely, the gramicidin A channel and an L-type calcium channel, depending on whether water is allowed to pass through the channel. Numerical methods are first validated with constructed models whose exact solutions are

  2. Extracted ion current density in close-coupling multi-antenna type radio frequency driven ion source: CC-MATIS

    SciTech Connect

    Oka, Y. E-mail: oka@LHD.nifs.ac.jp; Shoji, T.

    2014-02-15

    Positive ions are extracted by using a small extractor from the Close-Coupling Multi-Antenna Type radio frequency driven Ion Source. Two types of RF antenna are used. The maximum extracted ion current density reaches 0.106 A/cm{sup 2}. The RF net power efficiency of the extracted ion current density under standard condition is 11.6 mA/cm{sup 2}/kW. The efficiency corresponds to the level of previous beam experiments on elementary designs of multi-antenna sources, and also to the efficiency level of a plasma driven by a filament in the same chamber. The multi-antenna type RF plasma source is promising for all metal high density ion sources in a large volume chamber.

  3. Zinc activates damage-sensing TRPA1 ion channels

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Hongzhen; Bandell, Michael; Petrus, Matt J.; Zhu, Michael X.; Patapoutian, Ardem

    2009-01-01

    Zinc is an essential biological trace element. It is required for the structure or function of over 300 proteins, and is increasingly recognized for its role in cell signaling. However, high concentrations of zinc have cytotoxic effects, and overexposure to zinc can cause pain and inflammation through unknown mechanisms. Here we show that zinc excites nociceptive somatosensory neurons and causes nociception in mice through TRPA1, a cation channel previously shown to mediate the pungency of wasabi and cinnamon through cysteine-modification. Zinc activates TRPA1 through a novel mechanism that requires zinc influx through TRPA1 channels and subsequent activation via specific intracellular cysteine and histidine residues. TRPA1 is highly sensitive to intracellular zinc, as low nanomolar concentrations activate TRPA1 and modulate its sensitivity. These findings identify TRPA1 as a major target for the sensory effects of zinc, and support an emerging role for zinc as a signaling molecule that can modulate sensory transmission. PMID:19202543

  4. Mechanosensitive ion channel MscL controls ionic fluxes during cold and heat stress in Synechocystis.

    PubMed

    Bachin, Dmitry; Nazarenko, Lyudmila V; Mironov, Kirill S; Pisareva, Tatiana; Allakhverdiev, Suleyman I; Los, Dmitry A

    2015-06-01

    Calcium plays an essential role in a variety of stress responses of eukaryotic cells; however, its function in prokaryotes is obscure. Bacterial ion channels that transport Ca(2+) are barely known. We investigated temperature-induced changes in intracellular concentration of Ca(2+), Na(+) and K(+) in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. strain PCC 6803 and its mutant that is defective in mechanosensitive ion channel MscL. Concentration of cations rapidly and transiently increased in wild-type cells in response to cold and heat treatments. These changes in ionic concentrations correlated with the changes in cytoplasmic volume that transiently decreased in response to temperature treatments. However, no increase in ionic concentrations was observed in the MscL-mutant cells. It implies that MscL functions as a non-specific ion channel, and it participates in regulation of cell volume under temperature-stress conditions.

  5. Generalized Langevin models of molecular dynamics simulations with applications to ion channels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, Dan; Krishnamurthy, Vikram; Chung, Shin-Ho

    2009-10-01

    We present a new methodology, which combines molecular dynamics and stochastic dynamics, for modeling the permeation of ions across biological ion channels. Using molecular dynamics, a free energy profile is determined for the ion(s) in the channel, and the distribution of random and frictional forces is measured over discrete segments of the ion channel. The parameters thus determined are used in stochastic dynamics simulations based on the nonlinear generalized Langevin equation. We first provide the theoretical basis of this procedure, which we refer to as "distributional molecular dynamics," and detail the methods for estimating the parameters from molecular dynamics to be used in stochastic dynamics. We test the technique by applying it to study the dynamics of ion permeation across the gramicidin pore. Given the known difficulty in modeling the conduction of ions in gramicidin using classical molecular dynamics, there is a degree of uncertainty regarding the validity of the MD-derived potential of mean force (PMF) for gramicidin. Using our techniques and systematically changing the PMF, we are able to reverse engineer a modified PMF which gives a current-voltage curve closely matching experimental results.

  6. Aluminium and hydrogen ions inhibit a mechanosensory calcium-selective cati