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Gap junctions are formed by a family of homologous proteins termed connexins. Their channels are dodecamers, and homomeric forms differ in their properties with respect to control by voltage and other gating stimuli. We report here the properties of coupling from expression of connexin complementary RNAs (cRNAs; sense to mRNA, antisense to cDNA) in Xenopus(More)
Hexamers of connexins (Cxs) form hemichannels that dock tightly in series via their extracellular domains to give rise to gap junction channels. Here we examined the ability of a variety of C-terminal Cx32 mutations, most of which have been identified in X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, to form hemichannels and to complete gap junction channels using(More)
The importance of electrical and molecular signaling through connexin (Cx) channels is now widely recognized. The transfer of ions and other small molecules between adjacent cells is regulated by multiple stimuli, including voltage. Indeed, Cx channels typically exhibit complex voltage sensitivity. Most channels are sensitive to the voltage difference(More)
In addition to forming gap-junction channels, a subset of connexins (Cxs) also form functional hemichannels. Most hemichannels are activated by depolarization, and opening depends critically on the external Ca2+ concentration. Here we describe the mechanisms of action and the structural determinants underlying the Ca2+ regulation of Cx32 hemichannels. At(More)
The conductance, g(j), of many gap junctions depends on voltage between the coupled cells (transjunctional voltage, V(j)) with little effect of the absolute membrane potential (V(m)) in the two cells; others show combined V(j) and V(m) dependence. We examined the molecular determinants of V(m) dependence by using rat connexin 43 expressed in paired Xenopus(More)
PURPOSE To identify, clone molecularly, characterize immunochemically, and express functionally a bovine lens gap junction protein (connexin). METHODS The methods used were polymerase chain reaction, genomic cloning, RNA and DNA blotting, bacterial expression of a fusion protein, immunoblotting, alkaline phosphatase treatment, Xenopus oocyte expression,(More)
Mutations of connexin-26 (Cx26) cause nonsyndromic hearing loss and other syndromes affecting ectoderm-derived tissues. While the exact mechanisms underlying these diseases remain elusive, Cx's are generally considered to mediate cell-to-cell communication by forming gap junction channels. We show here that unlike rat Cx26, human and sheep Cx26 form(More)
Previous studies indicate that the carboxyl terminal of connexin43 (Cx43CT) is involved in fast transjunctional voltage gating. Separate studies support the notion of an intramolecular association between Cx43CT and a region of the cytoplasmic loop (amino acids 119-144; referred to as "L2"). Structural analysis of L2 shows two alpha-helical domains, each(More)
X-linked Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is one of a set of diseases caused by mutations in gap junction proteins called connexins. We identified a connexin32 missense mutation (F235C) in a girl with unusually severe neuropathy. The localization and trafficking of the mutant protein in cell culture was normal, but electrophysiological studies showed that the(More)