skip to main content

Title: Expression of truncated Kir6.2 promotes insertion of functionally inverted ATP-sensitive K+ channels
Abstract ATP-sensitive K + (K ATP ) channels couple cellular metabolism to electrical activity in many cell types. Wild-type K ATP channels are comprised of four pore forming (Kir6.x) and four regulatory (sulfonylurea receptor, SURx) subunits that each contain RKR endoplasmic reticulum retention sequences that serve to properly translocate the channel to the plasma membrane. Truncated Kir6.x variants lacking RKR sequences facilitate plasma membrane expression of functional Kir6.x in the absence of SURx; however, the effects of channel truncation on plasma membrane orientation have not been explored. To investigate the role of truncation on plasma membrane orientation of ATP sensitive K + channels, three truncated variants of Kir6.2 were used (Kir6.2ΔC26, 6xHis-Kir6.2ΔC26, and 6xHis-EGFP-Kir6.2ΔC26). Oocyte expression of Kir6.2ΔC26 shows the presence of a population of inverted inserted channels in the plasma membrane, which is not present when co-expressed with SUR1. Immunocytochemical staining of intact and permeabilized HEK293 cells revealed that the N-terminus of 6xHis-Kir6.2ΔC26 was accessible on both sides of the plasma membrane at roughly equivalent ratios, whereas the N-terminus of 6xHis-EGFP-Kir6.2Δ26 was only accessible on the intracellular face. In HEK293 cells, whole-cell electrophysiological recordings showed a ca. 50% reduction in K + current upon addition of ATP to the more » extracellular solution for 6xHis-Kir6.2ΔC26, though sensitivity to extracellular ATP was not observed in 6xHis-EGFP-Kir6.2ΔC26. Importantly, the population of channels that is inverted exhibited similar function to properly inserted channels within the plasma membrane. Taken together, these data suggest that in the absence of SURx, inverted channels can be formed from truncated Kir6.x subunits that are functionally active which may provide a new model for testing pharmacological modulators of Kir6.x, but also indicates the need for added caution when using truncated Kir6.2 mutants. « less
Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Award ID(s):
2003297
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10378223
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Volume:
11
Issue:
1
ISSN:
2045-2322
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. The pH-low insertion peptide (pHLIP) is an anionic membrane-active peptide with promising potential for applications in imaging of cancer tumors and targeted delivery of chemotherapeutics. The key advantage of pHLIP lies in its acid sensitivity: in acidic cellular environments, pHLIP can insert unidirectionally into the plasma membrane. Partitioning–folding coupling is triggered by titration of the acidic residues in pHLIP, transforming pHLIP from a hydrophilic to a hydrophobic peptide. Despite this knowledge, the reverse pathway that leads to exit of the peptide from the plasma membrane is poorly understood. Our hypothesis is that sequential deprotonation of pHLIP is a prerequisite for exit of the peptide from the plasma membrane. We carried out molecular dynamics (MD) simulations to characterize the effect that deprotonation of the acidic residues of pHLIP has on the stability of the peptide when inserted into a model lipid bilayer of 1-palmitoyl-2-oleoyl-sn-3-phosphocholine (POPC). Initiation of the exit mechanism is facilitated by a complex relationship between the peptide, bulk solvent, and the membrane environment. As the N-terminal acidic residues of pHLIP are deprotonated, localized loss of helicity drives unfolding of the peptide and more pronounced interactions with the bilayer at the lipid–water interface. Deprotonation of the C-terminal acidic residues (D25,more »D31, D33, and E34) leads to further loss of secondary structure distal from the C-terminus, as well as formation of a water channel that stabilizes the orientation of pHLIP parallel to the membrane normal. Together, these results help explain how stabilization of intermediates between the surface-bound and inserted states of pHLIP occur and provide insights into rational design of pHLIP variants with modified abilities of insertion.« less
  2. K+channels play a critical role in maintaining the normal electrical activity of excitable cells by setting the cell resting membrane potential and by determining the shape and duration of the action potential. In nonexcitable cells, K+channels establish electrochemical gradients necessary for maintaining salt and volume homeostasis of body fluids. Inward rectifier K+(Kir) channels typically conduct larger inward currents than outward currents, resulting in an inwardly rectifying current versus voltage relationship. This property of inward rectification results from the voltage-dependent block of the channels by intracellular polyvalent cations and makes these channels uniquely designed for maintaining the resting potential near the K+equilibrium potential (EK). The Kir family of channels consist of seven subfamilies of channels (Kir1.x through Kir7.x) that include the classic inward rectifier (Kir2.x) channel, the G-protein-gated inward rectifier K+(GIRK) (Kir3.x), and the adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-sensitive (KATP) (Kir 6.x) channels as well as the renal Kir1.1 (ROMK), Kir4.1, and Kir7.1 channels. These channels not only function to regulate electrical/electrolyte transport activity, but also serve as effector molecules for G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) and as molecular sensors for cell metabolism. Of significance, Kir channels represent promising pharmacological targets for treating a number of clinical conditions, including cardiac arrhythmias, anxiety, chronic pain, andmore »hypertension. This review provides a brief background on the structure, function, and pharmacology of Kir channels and then focuses on describing and evaluating current high-throughput screening (HTS) technologies, such as membrane potential-sensitive fluorescent dye assays, ion flux measurements, and automated patch clamp systems used for Kir channel drug discovery.

    « less
  3. ABSTRACT In recent years, considerable progress has been made in topologically and functionally characterizing integral outer membrane proteins (OMPs) of Treponema pallidum subspecies pallidum , the syphilis spirochete, and identifying its surface-exposed β-barrel domains. Extracellular loops in OMPs of Gram-negative bacteria are known to be highly variable. We examined the sequence diversity of β-barrel-encoding regions of tprC , tprD , and bamA in 31 specimens from Cali, Colombia; San Francisco, California; and the Czech Republic and compared them to allelic variants in the 41 reference genomes in the NCBI database. To establish a phylogenetic framework, we used T. pallidum 0548 ( tp0548 ) genotyping and tp0558 sequences to assign strains to the Nichols or SS14 clades. We found that (i) β-barrels in clinical strains could be grouped according to allelic variants in T. pallidum subsp. pallidum reference genomes; (ii) for all three OMP loci, clinical strains within the Nichols or SS14 clades often harbored β-barrel variants that differed from the Nichols and SS14 reference strains; and (iii) OMP variable regions often reside in predicted extracellular loops containing B-cell epitopes. On the basis of structural models, nonconservative amino acid substitutions in predicted transmembrane β-strands of T. pallidum repeat C (TprC) and TprD2 could givemore »rise to functional differences in their porin channels. OMP profiles of some clinical strains were mosaics of different reference strains and did not correlate with results from enhanced molecular typing. Our observations suggest that human host selection pressures drive T. pallidum subsp. pallidum OMP diversity and that genetic exchange contributes to the evolutionary biology of T. pallidum subsp. pallidum . They also set the stage for topology-based analysis of antibody responses to OMPs and help frame strategies for syphilis vaccine development. IMPORTANCE Despite recent progress characterizing outer membrane proteins (OMPs) of Treponema pallidum , little is known about how their surface-exposed, β-barrel-forming domains vary among strains circulating within high-risk populations. In this study, sequences for the β-barrel-encoding regions of three OMP loci, tprC , tprD , and bamA , in T. pallidum subsp. pallidum isolates from a large number of patient specimens from geographically disparate sites were examined. Structural models predict that sequence variation within β-barrel domains occurs predominantly within predicted extracellular loops. Amino acid substitutions in predicted transmembrane strands that could potentially affect porin channel function were also noted. Our findings suggest that selection pressures exerted within human populations drive T. pallidum subsp. pallidum OMP diversity and that recombination at OMP loci contributes to the evolutionary biology of syphilis spirochetes. These results also set the stage for topology-based analysis of antibody responses that promote clearance of T. pallidum subsp. pallidum and frame strategies for vaccine development based upon conserved OMP extracellular loops.« less
  4. Insulin pulsatility is important to hepatic response in regulating blood glucose. Growing evidence suggests that insulin-secreting pancreatic β-cells can adapt to chronic disruptions of pulsatility to rescue this physiologically important behavior. We determined the time scale for adaptation and examined potential ion channels underlying it. We induced the adaptation both by chronic application of the ATP-sensitive K + [K(ATP)] channel blocker tolbutamide and by application of the depolarizing agent potassium chloride (KCl). Acute application of tolbutamide without pretreatment results in elevated Ca 2+ as measured by fura-2AM and the loss of endogenous pulsatility. We show that after chronic exposure to tolbutamide (12–24 h), Ca 2+ oscillations occur with subsequent acute tolbutamide application. The same experiment was conducted with potassium chloride (KCl) to directly depolarize the β-cells. Once again, following chronic exposure to the cell stimulator, the islets produced Ca 2+ oscillations when subsequently exposed to tolbutamide. These experiments suggest that it is the chronic stimulation, and not tolbutamide desensitization, that is responsible for the adaptation that rescues oscillatory β-cell activity. This compensatory response also causes islet glucose sensitivity to shift rightward following chronic tolbutamide treatment. Mathematical modeling shows that a small increase in the number of K(ATP) channels in themore »membrane is one adaptation mechanism that is compatible with the data. To examine other compensatory mechanisms, pharmacological studies provide support that Kir2.1 and TEA-sensitive channels play some role. Overall, this investigation demonstrates β-cell adaptability to overstimulation, which is likely an important mechanism for maintaining glucose homeostasis in the face of chronic stimulation.« less
  5. Martin, Sophie G (Ed.)
    Pkd2 is the fission yeast homolog of polycystins. This putative ion channel localizes to the plasma membrane. It is required for the expansion of cell volume during interphase growth and cytokinesis, the last step of cell division. However, the channel activity of Pkd2 remains untested. Here, we examined the calcium permeability and mechanosensitivity of Pkd2 through in vitro reconstitution and calcium imaging of the pkd2 mutant cells. Pkd2 was translated and inserted into the lipid bilayer of giant unilamellar vesicles using a cell-free expression system. The reconstituted Pkd2 permeated calcium when the membrane was stretched via hypo-osmotic shock. In vivo, inactivation of Pkd2 through a temperature-sensitive mutation pkd2-B42 reduced the average intracellular calcium level by 34%. Compared to the wild type, the hypomorphic mutation pkd2-81KD reduced the amplitude of hypo-osmotic shock-triggered calcium spikes by 59%. During cytokinesis, mutations of pkd2 reduced the calcium spikes accompanying cell separation and the ensuing membrane stretching by 60%. We concluded that fission yeast polycystin Pkd2 allows calcium influx when activated by membrane stretching, representing a likely mechanosensitive channel that contributes to the cytokinetic calcium spikes.