Modulation of a voltage-gated Na+ channel by sevoflurane involves multiple sites and distinct mechanisms.
ABSTRACT: Halogenated inhaled general anesthetic agents modulate voltage-gated ion channels, but the underlying molecular mechanisms are not understood. Many general anesthetic agents regulate voltage-gated Na(+) (NaV) channels, including the commonly used drug sevoflurane. Here, we investigated the putative binding sites and molecular mechanisms of sevoflurane action on the bacterial NaV channel NaChBac by using a combination of molecular dynamics simulation, electrophysiology, and kinetic analysis. Structural modeling revealed multiple sevoflurane interaction sites possibly associated with NaChBac modulation. Electrophysiologically, sevoflurane favors activation and inactivation at low concentrations (0.2 mM), and additionally accelerates current decay at high concentrations (2 mM). Explaining these observations, kinetic modeling suggests concurrent destabilization of closed states and low-affinity open channel block. We propose that the multiple effects of sevoflurane on NaChBac result from simultaneous interactions at multiple sites with distinct affinities. This multiple-site, multiple-mode hypothesis offers a framework to study the structural basis of general anesthetic action.
Project description:Voltage-gated sodium (NaV) channels are important targets of general anesthetics, including the intravenous anesthetic propofol. Electrophysiology studies on the prokaryotic NaV channel NaChBac have demonstrated that propofol promotes channel activation and accelerates activation-coupled inactivation, but the molecular mechanisms of these effects are unclear. Here, guided by computational docking and molecular dynamics simulations, we predict several propofol-binding sites in NaChBac. We then strategically place small fluorinated probes at these putative binding sites and experimentally quantify the interaction strengths with a fluorinated propofol analogue, 4-fluoropropofol. In vitro and in vivo measurements show that 4-fluoropropofol and propofol have similar effects on NaChBac function and nearly identical anesthetizing effects on tadpole mobility. Using quantitative analysis by 19F-NMR saturation transfer difference spectroscopy, we reveal strong intermolecular cross-relaxation rate constants between 4-fluoropropofol and four different regions of NaChBac, including the activation gate and selectivity filter in the pore, the voltage sensing domain, and the S4-S5 linker. Unlike volatile anesthetics, 4-fluoropropofol does not bind to the extracellular interface of the pore domain. Collectively, our results show that propofol inhibits NaChBac at multiple sites, likely with distinct modes of action. This study provides a molecular basis for understanding the net inhibitory action of propofol on NaV channels.
Project description:Voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV) play an important role in general anesthesia. Electrophysiology measurements suggest that volatile anesthetics such as isoflurane inhibit NaV by stabilizing the inactivated state or altering the inactivation kinetics. Recent computational studies suggested the existence of multiple isoflurane binding sites in NaV, but experimental binding data are lacking. Here we use site-directed placement of 19F probes in NMR experiments to quantify isoflurane binding to the bacterial voltage-gated sodium channel NaChBac. 19F probes were introduced individually to S129 and L150 near the S4-S5 linker, L179 and S208 at the extracellular surface, T189 in the ion selectivity filter, and all phenylalanine residues. Quantitative analyses of 19F NMR saturation transfer difference (STD) spectroscopy showed a strong interaction of isoflurane with S129, T189, and S208; relatively weakly with L150; and almost undetectable with L179 and phenylalanine residues. An orientation preference was observed for isoflurane bound to T189 and S208, but not to S129 and L150. We conclude that isoflurane inhibits NaChBac by two distinct mechanisms: (i) as a channel blocker at the base of the selectivity filter, and (ii) as a modulator to restrict the pivot motion at the S4-S5 linker and at a critical hinge that controls the gating and inactivation motion of S6.
Project description:NaChBac is a bacterial voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channel that shows sequence similarity to voltage-gated calcium channels. To understand the ion-permeation mechanism of Nav channels, we combined molecular dynamics simulation, structural biology and electrophysiological approaches to investigate the recently determined structure of NavRh, a marine bacterial NaChBac ortholog. Two Na(+) binding sites are identified in the selectivity filter (SF) in our simulations: The extracellular Na(+) ion first approaches site 1 constituted by the side groups of Ser181 and Glu183, and then spontaneously arrives at the energetically more favorable site 2 formed by the carbonyl oxygens of Leu179 and Thr178. In contrast, Ca(2+) ions are prone to being trapped by Glu183 at site 1, which then blocks the entrance of both Na(+) and Ca(2+) to the vestibule of the SF. In addition, Na(+) permeates through the selective filter in an asymmetrical manner, a feature that resembles that of the mammalian Nav orthologs. The study reported here provides insights into the mechanism of ion selectivity on Na(+) over Ca(2+) in mammalian Nav channels.
Project description:Voltage-gated Na+ (NaV) channels regulate homeostasis in bacteria and control membrane electrical excitability in mammals. Compared to their mammalian counterparts, bacterial NaV channels possess a simpler, fourfold symmetric structure and have facilitated studies of the structural basis of channel gating. However, the pharmacology of bacterial NaV remains largely unexplored. Here we systematically screened 39 NaV modulators on a bacterial channel (NaChBac) and characterized a selection of compounds on NaChBac and a mammalian channel (human NaV1.7). We found that while many compounds interact with both channels, they exhibit distinct functional effects. For example, the local anesthetics ambroxol and lidocaine block both NaV1.7 and NaChBac but affect activation and inactivation of the two channels to different extents. The voltage-sensing domain targeting toxin BDS-I increases NaV1.7 but decreases NaChBac peak currents. The pore binding toxins aconitine and veratridine block peak currents of NaV1.7 and shift activation (aconitine) and inactivation (veratridine) respectively. In NaChBac, they block the peak current by binding to the pore residue F224. Nonetheless, aconitine has no effect on activation or inactivation, while veratridine only modulates activation of NaChBac. The conservation and divergence in the pharmacology of bacterial and mammalian NaV channels provide insights into the molecular basis of channel gating and will facilitate organism-specific drug discovery.
Project description:Batrachotoxin (BTX), an alkaloid from skin secretions of dendrobatid frogs, causes paralysis and death by facilitating activation and inhibiting deactivation of eukaryotic voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channels, which underlie action potentials in nerve, muscle, and heart. A full understanding of the mechanism by which BTX modifies eukaryotic Nav gating awaits determination of high-resolution structures of functional toxin-channel complexes. Here, we investigate the action of BTX on the homotetrameric prokaryotic Nav channels NaChBac and NavSp1. By combining mutational analysis and whole-cell patch clamp with molecular and kinetic modeling, we show that BTX hinders deactivation and facilitates activation in a use-dependent fashion. Our molecular model shows the horseshoe-shaped BTX molecule bound within the open pore, forming hydrophobic H-bonds and cation-? contacts with the pore-lining helices, leaving space for partially dehydrated sodium ions to permeate through the hydrophilic inner surface of the horseshoe. We infer that bulky BTX, bound at the level of the gating-hinge residues, prevents the S6 rearrangements that are necessary for closure of the activation gate. Our results reveal general similarities to, and differences from, BTX actions on eukaryotic Nav channels, whose major subunit is a single polypeptide formed by four concatenated, homologous, nonidentical domains that form a pseudosymmetric pore. Our determination of the mechanism by which BTX activates homotetrameric voltage-gated channels reveals further similarities between eukaryotic and prokaryotic Nav channels and emphasizes the tractability of bacterial Nav channels as models of voltage-dependent ion channel gating. The results contribute toward a deeper, atomic-level understanding of use-dependent natural and synthetic Nav channel agonists and antagonists, despite their overlapping binding motifs on the channel proteins.
Project description:Voltage-gated, sodium ion-selective channels (NaV) generate electrical signals contributing to the upstroke of the action potential in animals. NaVs are also found in bacteria and are members of a larger family of tetrameric voltage-gated channels that includes CaVs, KVs, and NaVs. Prokaryotic NaVs likely emerged from a homotetrameric Ca2+-selective voltage-gated progenerator, and later developed Na+ selectivity independently. The NaV signaling complex in eukaryotes contains auxiliary proteins, termed beta (?) subunits, which are potent modulators of the expression profiles and voltage-gated properties of the NaV pore, but it is unknown whether they can functionally interact with prokaryotic NaV channels. Herein, we report that the eukaryotic NaV?1-subunit isoform interacts with and enhances the surface expression as well as the voltage-dependent gating properties of the bacterial NaV, NaChBac in Xenopus oocytes. A phylogenetic analysis of the ?-subunit gene family proteins confirms that these proteins appeared roughly 420 million years ago and that they have no clear homologues in bacterial phyla. However, a comparison between eukaryotic and bacterial NaV structures highlighted the presence of a conserved fold, which could support interactions with the ?-subunit. Our electrophysiological, biochemical, structural, and bioinformatics results suggests that the prerequisites for ?-subunit regulation are an evolutionarily stable and intrinsic property of some voltage-gated channels.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Halogenated inhaled anesthetics modulate voltage-gated ion channels by unknown mechanisms.<h4>Results</h4>Biophysical analyses revealed novel activation of K(v) channels by the inhaled anesthetic sevoflurane.<h4>Conclusion</h4>K(v) channel activation by sevoflurane results from the positive allosteric modulation of activation gating.<h4>Significance</h4>The unique activation of K(v) channels by sevoflurane demonstrates novel anesthetic specificity and offers new insights into allosteric modulation of channel gating. Voltage-gated ion channels are modulated by halogenated inhaled general anesthetics, but the underlying molecular mechanisms are not understood. Alkanols and halogenated inhaled anesthetics such as halothane and isoflurane inhibit the archetypical voltage-gated Kv3 channel homolog K-Shaw2 by stabilizing the resting/closed states. By contrast, sevoflurane, a more heavily fluorinated ether commonly used in general anesthesia, specifically activates K-Shaw2 currents at relevant concentrations (0.05-1 mM) in a rapid and reversible manner. The concentration dependence of this modulation is consistent with the presence of high and low affinity interactions (K(D) = 0.06 and 4 mM, respectively). Sevoflurane (<1 mM) induces a negative shift in the conductance-voltage relation and increases the maximum conductance. Furthermore, suggesting possible roles in general anesthesia, mammalian Kv1.2 and Kv1.5 channels display similar changes. Quantitative description of the observations by an economical allosteric model indicates that sevoflurane binding favors activation gating and eliminates an unstable inactivated state outside the activation pathway. This study casts light on the mechanism of the novel sevoflurane-dependent activation of Kv channels, which helps explain how closely related inhaled anesthetics achieve specific actions and suggests strategies to develop novel Kv channel activators.
Project description:Inhalational general anesthesia results from the poorly understood interactions of haloethers with multiple protein targets, which prominently includes ion channels in the nervous system. Previously, we reported that the commonly used inhaled anesthetic sevoflurane potentiates the activity of voltage-gated K+ (Kv) channels, specifically, several mammalian Kv1 channels and the Drosophila K-Shaw2 channel. Also, previous work suggested that the S4-S5 linker of K-Shaw2 plays a role in the inhibition of this Kv channel by n-alcohols and inhaled anesthetics. Here, we hypothesized that the S4-S5 linker is also a determinant of the potentiation of Kv1.2 and K-Shaw2 by sevoflurane. Following functional expression of these Kv channels in Xenopus oocytes, we found that converse mutations in Kv1.2 (G329T) and K-Shaw2 (T330G) dramatically enhance and inhibit the potentiation of the corresponding conductances by sevoflurane, respectively. Additionally, Kv1.2-G329T impairs voltage-dependent gating, which suggests that Kv1.2 modulation by sevoflurane is tied to gating in a state-dependent manner. Toward creating a minimal Kv1.2 structural model displaying the putative sevoflurane binding sites, we also found that the positive modulations of Kv1.2 and Kv1.2-G329T by sevoflurane and other general anesthetics are T1-independent. In contrast, the positive sevoflurane modulation of K-Shaw2 is T1-dependent. In silico docking and molecular dynamics-based free-energy calculations suggest that sevoflurane occupies distinct sites near the S4-S5 linker, the pore domain and around the external selectivity filter. We conclude that the positive allosteric modulation of the Kv channels by sevoflurane involves separable processes and multiple sites within regions intimately involved in channel gating.
Project description:Propofol is widely used in the clinic for the induction and maintenance of general anesthesia. As with most general anesthetics, however, our understanding of its mechanism of action remains incomplete. Local and general anesthetics largely inhibit voltage-gated Na+ channels (Navs) by inducing an apparent stabilization of the inactivated state, associated in some instances with pore block. To determine the biophysical and molecular basis of propofol action in Navs, we investigated NaChBac and NavMs, two prokaryotic Navs with distinct voltage dependencies and gating kinetics, by whole-cell patch clamp electrophysiology in the absence and presence of propofol at clinically relevant concentrations (2-10 µM). In both Navs, propofol induced a hyperpolarizing shift of the pre-pulse inactivation curve without any significant effects on recovery from inactivation at strongly hyperpolarized voltages, demonstrating that propofol does not stabilize the inactivated state. Moreover, there was no evidence of fast or slow pore block by propofol in a non-inactivating NaChBac mutant (T220A). Propofol also induced hyperpolarizing shifts of the conductance-voltage relationships with negligible effects on the time constants of deactivation at hyperpolarized voltages, indicating that propofol does not stabilize the open state. Instead, propofol decreases the time constants of macroscopic activation and inactivation. Adopting a kinetic scheme of Nav gating that assumes preferential closed-state recovery from inactivation, a 1.7-fold acceleration of the rate constant of activation and a 1.4-fold acceleration of the rate constant of inactivation were sufficient to reproduce experimental observations with computer simulations. In addition, molecular dynamics simulations and molecular docking suggest that propofol binding involves interactions with gating machinery in the S4-S5 linker and external pore regions. Our findings show that propofol is primarily a positive gating modulator of prokaryotic Navs, which ultimately inhibits the channels by promoting activation-coupled inactivation.
Project description:Recent structural breakthroughs with the voltage-gated sodium channel from Arcobacter butzleri suggest that such bacterial channels may provide a structural platform to advance the understanding of eukaryotic sodium channel gating and pharmacology. We therefore set out to determine whether compounds known to interact with eukaryotic Na(V)s could also inhibit the bacterial channel from Bacillus halodurans and NaChBac and whether they did so through similar mechanisms as in their eukaryotic homologues. The data show that the archetypal local anesthetic (LA) lidocaine inhibits resting NaChBac channels with a dissociation constant (K(d)) of 260 µM, and channels displayed a left-shifted steady-state inactivation gating relationship in the presence of the drug. Extracellular application of QX-314 to expressed NaChBac channels had no effect on sodium current, whereas internal exposure via injection of a bolus of the quaternary derivative rapidly reduced sodium conductance, consistent with a hydrophilic cytoplasmic access pathway to an internal binding site. However, the neutral derivative benzocaine applied externally inhibited NaChBac channels, suggesting that hydrophobic pathways can also provide drug access to inhibit channels. Alternatively, ranolazine, a putative preopen state blocker of eukaryotic Na(V)s, displayed a K(d) of 60 µM and left-shifted the NaChBac activation-voltage relationship. In each case, block enhanced entry into the inactivated state of the channel, an effect that is well described by a simple kinetic scheme. The data suggest that although significant differences exist, LA block of eukaryotic Na(V)s also occurs in bacterial sodium channels and that NaChBac shares pharmacological homology to the resting state of vertebrate Na(V) homologues.