Roderick MacKinnon

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Voltage-dependent potassium ion (K+) channels (Kv channels) conduct K+ ions across the cell membrane in response to changes in the membrane voltage, thereby regulating neuronal excitability by modulating the shape and frequency of action potentials. Here we report the crystal structure, at a resolution of 2.9 angstroms, of a mammalian Kv channel, Kv1.2,(More)
Ion transport proteins must remove an ion's hydration shell to coordinate the ion selectively on the basis of its size and charge. To discover how the K+ channel solves this fundamental aspect of ion conduction, we solved the structure of the KcsA K+ channel in complex with a monoclonal Fab antibody fragment at 2.0 A resolution. Here we show how the K+(More)
Ion channels exhibit two essential biophysical properties; that is, selective ion conduction, and the ability to gate-open in response to an appropriate stimulus. Two general categories of ion channel gating are defined by the initiating stimulus: ligand binding (neurotransmitter- or second-messenger-gated channels) or membrane voltage (voltage-gated(More)
Voltage-dependent K+ channels are members of the family of voltage-dependent cation (K+, Na+ and Ca2+) channels that open and allow ion conduction in response to changes in cell membrane voltage. This form of gating underlies the generation of nerve and muscle action potentials, among other processes. Here we present the structure of KvAP, a(More)
Living cells regulate the activity of their ion channels through a process known as gating. To open the pore, protein conformational changes must occur within a channel's membrane-spanning ion pathway. KcsA and MthK, closed and opened K(+) channels, respectively, reveal how such gating transitions occur. Pore-lining 'inner' helices contain a 'gating hinge'(More)
Voltage-dependent K+ (Kv) channels repolarize the action potential in neurons and muscle. This type of channel is gated directly by membrane voltage through protein domains known as voltage sensors, which are molecular voltmeters that read the membrane voltage and regulate the pore. Here we describe the structure of a chimaeric voltage-dependent K+ channel,(More)
The ClC chloride channels catalyse the selective flow of Cl- ions across cell membranes, thereby regulating electrical excitation in skeletal muscle and the flow of salt and water across epithelial barriers. Genetic defects in ClC Cl- channels underlie several familial muscle and kidney diseases. Here we present the X-ray structures of two prokaryotic ClC(More)
Voltage-dependent ion channels contain voltage sensors that allow them to switch between nonconductive and conductive states over the narrow range of a few hundredths of a volt. We investigated the mechanism by which these channels sense cell membrane voltage by determining the x-ray crystal structure of a mammalian Shaker family potassium ion (K+) channel.(More)
ClC channels conduct chloride (Cl-) ions across cell membranes and thereby govern the electrical activity of muscle cells and certain neurons, the transport of fluid and electrolytes across epithelia, and the acidification of intracellular vesicles. The structural basis of ClC channel gating was studied. Crystal structures of wild-type and mutant(More)
The steep dependence of channel opening on membrane voltage allows voltage-dependent K+ channels to turn on almost like a switch. Opening is driven by the movement of gating charges that originate from arginine residues on helical S4 segments of the protein. Each S4 segment forms half of a 'voltage-sensor paddle' on the channel's outer perimeter. Here we(More)