A novel mechanism of modulation of 5-HT?A receptors by hydrocortisone.
ABSTRACT: Modulation of Cys-loop receptors by steroids is of physiological and therapeutical relevance. Nonetheless, its molecular mechanism has not been elucidated for serotonin (5-HT) type 3 receptors. We deciphered the mechanism of action of hydrocortisone (HC) at 5-HT type 3A receptors. Single-channel currents from the high-conductance form (?4.7 pA, -70 mV) appear as a series of long opening events forming bursts, which group into long clusters. Although they are very infrequent, subconductance events (?2.4 pA) are detected within clusters. HC produces a significant concentration-dependent reduction in open and burst durations, demonstrating open-channel block. In addition, it increases the appearance of subconductance levels in a concentration- and slightly voltage-dependent manner. The amplitude of the subconductance level does not change with HC concentration and its open duration is briefer than that of full amplitude events, indicating lower open-channel stability. Dual effects are distinguished from macroscopic responses: HC reduces amplitude by acting from either open or closed states, and it increases decay rates from the open state. Thus, HC acts as a negative modulator of 5-HT type 3A receptors by different mechanisms: It acts as an open-channel blocker and it favors opening to a preexisting subconductance level. The latter constitutes a novel, to our knowledge, mechanism of channel modulation, which might be applicable to other steroids and channels.
Project description:Homomeric complexes of 5-HT(3A) receptor subunits form a ligand-gated ion channel. This assembly does not fully reproduce the biophysical and pharmacological properties of native 5-HT(3) receptors which might contain the recently cloned 5-HT(3B) receptor subunit. In the present study, heteromeric assemblies containing human 5-HT(3A) and 5-HT(3B) subunits were expressed in HEK 293 cells to detail the functional diversity of 5-HT(3) receptors. We designed patch-clamp experiments with homomeric (5-HT(3A)) and heteromeric (5-HT(3AB)) receptors to emphasize the kinetics of channel activation and desensitization. Co-expression of the 5-HT(3B) receptor subunit reduced the sensitivity for 5-HT (5-HT(3A) receptor: EC(50) 3 micro M, Hill coefficient 1.8; 5-HT(3AB) receptor: EC(50) 25 micro M, Hill coefficient 0.9) and markedly altered receptor desensitization. Kinetic modeling suggested that homomeric receptors, but not heteromeric receptors, desensitize via an agonist-induced open-channel block. Furthermore, heteromeric 5-HT(3AB) receptor assemblies recovered much faster from desensitization than homomeric 5-HT(3A) receptor assemblies. Unexpectedly, the specific 5-HT(3) receptor agonist mCPBG induced an open-channel block at both homomeric and heteromeric receptors. Because receptor desensitization and resensitization massively affect amplitude, duration, and frequency of synaptic signaling, these findings are evidence in favor of a pivotal role of subunit composition of 5-HT(3) receptors in serotonergic transmission.
Project description:The lifetimes of activated postsynaptic receptor channels contribute to the efficiency of synaptic transmission. Here we show that structural differences within the interface dividing extracellular and transmembrane domains of homomeric alpha7 and 5-HT(3A) receptors account for the large differences in open-channel lifetime and time of desensitization onset between these contrasting members of the Cys-loop receptor superfamily. For alpha7 receptors, agonist-evoked single-channel currents appear mainly as isolated brief openings (tau(o) = 0.35 ms), whereas macroscopic currents after a step pulse of agonist desensitize rapidly (tau(d) = 0.4 ms). In contrast for 5-HT(3A) receptors, agonist-evoked single-channel currents appear as clusters of many long openings in quick succession (tau(cluster) = 1.2 s), whereas macroscopic currents desensitize slowly (tau(d) = 1.1 s). A chimeric alpha7-5HT(3A) receptor exhibits functional properties intermediate between those of the parent receptors, but the functional signatures of each parent are reconstituted after substituting the major loops within the interface of the extracellular and transmembrane domains from the corresponding parent receptor. Furthermore, these structural loops contribute to open-channel lifetime and time of desensitization onset in a nonadditive manner. The results suggest that desensitization is the major determinant of the lifetimes of activated alpha7 and 5-HT(3A) receptors and that functional differences between the two receptors arise primarily through structural differences at the interface between extracellular and transmembrane domains.
Project description:Prokaryotic members of the Cys-loop receptor ligand-gated ion channel superfamily were recently identified. Previously, Cys-loop receptors were only known from multicellular organisms (metazoans). Contrary to the metazoan Cys-loop receptors, the prokaryotic ones consist of an extracellular (ECD) and a transmembrane domain (TMD), lacking the large intracellular domain (ICD) present in metazoa (between transmembrane segments M3 and M4). Using a chimera approach, we added the 115-amino acid ICD from mammalian serotonin type 3A receptors (5-HT(3A)) to the prokaryotic proton-activated Gloeobacter violaceus ligand-gated ion channel (GLIC). We created 12 GLIC-5-HT(3A)-ICD chimeras by replacing a variable number of amino acids in the short GLIC M3M4 linker with the entire 5-HT(3A)-ICD. Two-electrode voltage clamp recordings after expression in Xenopus laevis oocytes showed that only two chimeras were functional and produced currents upon acidification. The pH(50) was comparable with wild-type GLIC. 5-HT(3A) receptor expression can be inhibited by the chaperone protein RIC-3. We have shown previously that the 5-HT(3A)-ICD is required for the attenuation of 5-HT-induced currents when RIC-3 is co-expressed with 5-HT(3A) receptors in X. laevis oocytes. Expression of both functional 5-HT(3A) chimeras was inhibited by RIC-3 co-expression, indicating appropriate folding of the 5-HT(3A)-ICD in the chimeras. Our results indicate that the ICD can be considered a separate domain that can be removed from or added to the ECD and TMD while maintaining the overall structure and function of the ECD and TMD.
Project description:Cx43 hemichannels (HCs) are electrically and chemically gated transmembrane pores with low open probability and multiple conductance states, which makes kinetic studies of channel gating in large datasets challenging. Here, we developed open access software, named HemiGUI, to analyze HC gating transitions and investigated voltage-induced HC opening based on up to ?4000 events recorded in HeLa-Cx43-overexpressing cells. We performed a detailed characterization of Cx43 HC gating profiles and specifically focused on the role of the C-terminal tail (CT) domain by recording the impact of adding an EGFP tag to the Cx43 CT end (Cx43-EGFP) or by supplying the Cx43 HC-inhibiting peptide Gap19 that interferes with CT interaction with the cytoplasmic loop (CL). We found that Gap19 not only decreased HC opening activity to the open state (?217 pS) but also increased the propensity of subconductance (?80 pS) transitions that additionally became slower as compared to the control. The work demonstrates that large sample transition analysis allows detailed investigations on Cx43 HC gating and shows that Gap19 acts as a HC gating modifier by interacting with the CT that forms a crucial gating element.
Project description:Coassembly of potassium voltage-gated channel, KQT-like subfamily, member 1 (KCNQ1) with potassium voltage-gated channel, Isk-related family, member 1 (KCNE1) the delayed rectifier potassium channel I(Ks). Its slow activation is critically important for membrane repolarization and for abbreviating the cardiac action potential, especially during sympathetic activation and at high heart rates. Mutations in either gene can cause long QT syndrome, which can lead to fatal arrhythmias. To understand better the elementary behavior of this slowly activating channel complex, we quantitatively analyzed direct measurements of single-channel I(Ks). Single-channel recordings from transiently transfected mouse ltk(-) cells confirm a channel that has long latency periods to opening (1.67 ± 0.073 s at +60 mV) but that flickers rapidly between multiple open and closed states in non-deactivating bursts at positive membrane potentials. Channel activity is cyclic with periods of high activity followed by quiescence, leading to an overall open probability of only ?0.15 after 4 s under our recording conditions. The mean single-channel conductance was determined to be 3.2 pS, but unlike any other known wild-type human potassium channel, long-lived subconductance levels coupled to activation are a key feature of both the activation and deactivation time courses of the conducting channel complex. Up to five conducting levels ranging from 0.13 to 0.66 pA could be identified in single-channel recordings at 60 mV. Fast closings and overt subconductance behavior of the wild-type I(Ks) channel required modification of existing Markov models to include these features of channel behavior.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE:The antimalarial compounds quinine, chloroquine and mefloquine affect the electrophysiological properties of Cys-loop receptors and have structural similarities to 5-HT(3) receptor antagonists. They may therefore act at 5-HT(3) receptors. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH:The effects of quinine, chloroquine and mefloquine on electrophysiological and ligand binding properties of 5-HT(3A) receptors expressed in HEK 293 cells and Xenopus oocytes were examined. The compounds were also docked into models of the binding site. KEY RESULTS:5-HT(3) responses were blocked with IC (50) values of 13.4 microM, 11.8 microM and 9.36 microM for quinine, chloroquine and mefloquine. Schild plots indicated quinine and chloroquine behaved competitively with pA (2) values of 4.92 (K (B)=12.0 microM) and 4.97 (K (B)=16.4 microM). Mefloquine displayed weakly voltage-dependent, non-competitive inhibition consistent with channel block. On and off rates for quinine and chloroquine indicated a simple bimolecular reaction scheme. Quinine, chloroquine and mefloquine displaced [(3)H]granisetron with K (i) values of 15.0, 24.2 and 35.7 microM. Docking of quinine into a homology model of the 5-HT(3) receptor binding site located the tertiary ammonium between W183 and Y234, and the quinoline ring towards the membrane, stabilised by a hydrogen bond with E129. For chloroquine, the quinoline ring was positioned between W183 and Y234 and the tertiary ammonium stabilised by interactions with F226. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS:This study shows that quinine and chloroquine competitively inhibit 5-HT(3) receptors, while mefloquine inhibits predominantly non-competitively. Both quinine and chloroquine can be docked into a receptor binding site model, consistent with their structural homology to 5-HT(3) receptor antagonists.
Project description:Sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) K(+) channels are voltage-regulated channels that are thought to be actively gating when the membrane potential across the SR is close to zero as is expected physiologically. A characteristic of SR K(+) channels is that they gate to subconductance open states but the relevance of the subconductance events and their contribution to the overall current flowing through the channels at physiological membrane potentials is not known. We have investigated the relationship between subconductance and full conductance openings and developed kinetic models to describe the voltage sensitivity of channel gating. Because there may be two subtypes of SR K(+) channels (TRIC-A and TRIC-B) present in most tissues, to conduct our study on a homogeneous population of SR K(+) channels, we incorporated SR vesicles derived from Tric-a knockout mice into artificial membranes to examine the remaining SR K(+) channel (TRIC-B) function. The channels displayed very low open probability (Po) at negative potentials (?0 mV) and opened predominantly to subconductance open states. Positive holding potentials primarily increased the frequency of subconductance state openings and thereby increased the number of subsequent transitions into the full open state, although a slowing of transitions back to the sublevels was also important. We investigated whether the subconductance gating could arise as an artifact of incomplete resolution of rapid transitions between full open and closed states; however, we were not able to produce a model that could fit the data as well as one that included multiple distinct current amplitudes. Our results suggest that the apparent subconductance openings will provide most of the K(+) flux when the SR membrane potential is close to zero. The relative contribution played by openings to the full open state would increase if negative charge developed within the SR thus increasing the capacity of the channel to compensate for ionic imbalances.
Project description:Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and 5-hydroxytryptamine type 3 receptors (5-HT(3)Rs) are members of the superfamily of neurotransmitter-gated ion channels. Both contain five subunits which assemble to form either homomeric or heteromeric subunit complexes. With the aim of identifying the influence of subunit domains upon receptor assembly and function, a series of chimaeras have been constructed containing regions of the neuronal nAChR alpha 7 subunit and the 5-HT(3) receptor (3A) subunit.A series of subunit chimaeras containing alpha 7 and 5-HT(3A) subunit domains have been constructed and expressed in cultured mammalian cells. Properties of the expressed receptors have been examined by means of radioligand binding, agonist-induced changes in intracellular calcium and patch-clamp electrophysiology.Subunit domains which influence properties such as rectification, desensitization and conductance have been identified. In addition, the influence of subunit domains upon subunit folding, receptor assembly and cell-surface expression has been identified. Co-expression studies with the nAChR-associated protein RIC-3 revealed that, in contrast to the potentiating effect of RIC-3 on alpha 7 nAChRs, RIC-3 caused reduced levels of cell-surface expression of some alpha 7/5-HT(3A) chimaeras.Evidence has been obtained which demonstrates that subunit transmembrane domains are critical for efficient subunit folding and assembly. In addition, functional characterization of subunit chimaeras revealed that both extracellular and cytoplasmic domains exert a dramatic and significant influence upon single-channel conductance. These data support a role for regions other than hydrophobic transmembrane domains in determining ion channel properties.
Project description:GluN2D-containing NMDA receptors are characterized by an unusually low open probability (0.023), even in the presence of saturating glutamate and glycine. Here, we show that recombinant GluN1/GluN2D NMDA receptors can enter brief periods with exceptionally high open probability (0.65) in excised outside-out and cell-attached single channel recordings. GluN1/GluN2D channels during the enhanced gating mode have similar open durations as occurs outside of the high open probability burst of activity. However, the periods in the high gating mode only exhibit 4 brief closed duration exponential components similar to the briefest observed for openings outside the burst. GluN1/GluN2D receptors also open to a more prominent subconductance level compared to activity outside the high open probability burst. Evaluation of a five-state NMDA receptor gating model suggests that both the opening and closing rate constants differ for the periods of higher open probability compared to the high open probability arm of a gating model previously published for GluN1/GluN2D fit to a representative full length single channel recording. These data demonstrate that GluN2D-containing NMDA receptors can enter a conformation or mode that allows the pore to gate with high probability.
Project description:The solubilized partially purified Ins(1,4,5)P3-sensitive Ca2+ channel from rat cerebellum has been reconstituted into planar lipid bilayer membranes by the 'tip-dip' method [Ehrlich (1992) Methods Enzymol. 207, 463-471] allowing low noise current records. Single-channel events have been recorded. In the presence of 10 microM Ins(1,4,5)P3, 50 microM ATP, and 0.2 microM Ca2+ the Ins(1,4,5)P3 receptor channel opens to a conductance level of 53 pS. In the presence of 100 microM thimerosal (TMS), a sulphydryl-oxidizing agent, three subconductance levels (60 pS, 80 pS and 120 pS) were observed. More than one population of mean open times was found, both in the absence and presence of TMS, although TMS affected the length of the open time by decreasing the short opening significantly from 4.05 ms to 2.78 ms and increasing the longer open time from 27.8 ms to 94.8 ms. The results indicate that TMS enhances Ins(1,4,5)P3-induced Ca2+ release by both altering the open times of the channel significantly and causing a shift to higher subconductance levels.