Learn More
1. We sought to distinguish two types of Ca2+ channel in guinea-pig ventricular cells (T-type and L-type) and to characterize their respective gating and permeation properties when Ca2+ (1-10 mM) is the charge carrier, as is the case physiologically. 2. Na+ was removed from both the external and internal solutions to eliminate currents through Na+ channels(More)
We investigated the mechanism whereby ions cross dihydropyridine-sensitive (L-type) Ca channels in guinea pig ventricular myocytes. At the single-channel level, we found no evidence of an anomalous mole-fraction effect like that reported previously for whole-cell currents in mixtures of Ba and Ca. With the total concentration of Ba + Ca kept constant at 10(More)
Sodium channels are the major proteins that underlie excitability in nerve, heart, and skeletal muscle. Chemical reaction rate theory was used to analyze the blockage of single wild-type and mutant sodium channels by cadmium ions. The affinity of cadmium for the native tetrodotoxin (TTX)-resistant cardiac channel was much higher than its affinity for the(More)
cAMP-dependent phosphorylation clearly increases current through cardiac L-type Ca channels, but the molecular manifestation of this effect remains controversial. Previous work implicates either an increase in the number of functional channels or graded changes in the gating of individual channels. We now find that single cardiac Ca channels display three(More)
Ca channel currents were recorded in Cs-loaded calf cardiac Purkinje fibres and Cs-dialysed myocytes from guinea-pig ventricle to evaluate the dependence of Ca channel inactivation on membrane depolarization and intracellular free Ca concentration ([Ca]i). The decay of Ca channel current during a maintained depolarization was slowed when external Ca was(More)
1. The sodium channel has a ring of negatively charged amino acids on its external face. This common structural feature of cation-selective channels has been proposed to optimize conduction by electrostatic attraction of permeant cations into the channel mouth. We tested this idea by mutagenesis of mu1 rat skeletal sodium channels expressed in Xenopus(More)
Electrical activity initiates a program of selective gene expression in excitable cells. Although such transcriptional activation is commonly attributed to depolarization-induced changes in intracellular Ca2+, zinc represents a viable alternative given its prominent role as a cofactor in DNA-binding proteins coupled with evidence that Zn2+ can enter(More)
We used serial cysteine mutagenesis to study the structure of the outer vestibule and selectivity region of the voltage-gated Na channel. The voltage dependence of Cd(2+) block enabled us to determine the locations within the electrical field of cysteine-substituted mutants in the P segments of all four domains. The fractional electrical distances of the(More)
The pores of ion channel proteins are often modeled as static structures. In this view, selectivity reflects rigidly constrained backbone orientations. Such a picture is at variance with the generalization that biological proteins are flexible, capable of major internal motions on biologically relevant time scales. We tested for motions in the sodium(More)
Sodium channels from diverse excitable membranes are very similar in their structure, yet surprisingly heterogeneous in their behavior. The processes that govern the opening and closing of sodium channels have appeared difficult to describe in terms of a single, unifying molecular scheme. Now cardiac sodium channels have been analyzed by high-resolution(More)