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Calcium and voltage-activated potassium (BK) channels are key actors in cell physiology, both in neuronal and non-neuronal cells and tissues. Through negative feedback between intracellular Ca (2+) and membrane voltage, BK channels provide a damping mechanism for excitatory signals. Molecular modulation of these channels by alternative splicing, auxiliary(More)
Calcium-activated potassium currents were studied in dissociated smooth muscle cells from human saphenous vein (HSV) using the patch-clamp technique in the whole-cell configuration. The average measured resting membrane potential (Vm) was -41+/-2 mV (n=39), when the cells were dialysed with an intracellular pipette solution (IPS) containing 0.1 mM(More)
Recent molecular-dynamics simulations have suggested that the arginine-rich HIV Tat peptides translocate by destabilizing and inducing transient pores in phospholipid bilayers. In this pathway for peptide translocation, Arg residues play a fundamental role not only in the binding of the peptide to the surface of the membrane, but also in the destabilization(More)
Adaptation, i.e., the decrease with time in sensory units' afferent discharge to a constant stimulus, appears to be a common feature of the receptors belonging to acoustico-lateralis system: However, the mechanisms underlying this process are still a matter of debate. The present experiments demonstrate that sensory adaptation to both mechanical and(More)
The effects of capsaicin, the active principle of hot pepper genus Capsicum, were studied on voltage-activated, tetrodotoxin-sensitive Na+ currents in isolated rat atrial cells using the patch clamp technique in the whole-cell configuration. 0.4 and 4 microM of capsaicin produced a significant tonic block on voltage-activated Na+ current (I(Na)) evoked by a(More)
The electrophysiological and pharmacological properties of Ca(2+) current (I(Ca)) were determined by the whole-cell configuration of the patch-clamp technique in smooth muscle cells from human umbilical artery. Using 5 mM extracellular Ca(2+), depolarizing step pulses from -60 to 50 mV from a holding membrane potential of -80 mV evoked an I(Ca) which(More)
Arachidonic acid (AA) is a polyunsaturated fatty acid involved in a complex network of cell signaling. It is well known that this fatty acid can directly modulate several cellular target structures, among them, ion channels. We explored the effects of AA on high conductance Ca2+- and voltage-dependent K+ channel (BKCa) in vascular smooth muscle cells(More)
The effects of hypotonic and hypertonic solutions (the normal value was 240 mOsm) on posterior canal resting and evoked discharge were studied in isolated labyrinth preparations. Hypotonic solutions (60-180 mOsm) were obtained by reducing the perilymphatic NaCl content. Hypertonic solutions (300-420 mOsm) were obtained by adding to normal perilymphatic(More)
The present study was devised in order to ascertain whether L-glutamate (Glu) is the neurotransmitter at the primary afferent synapse in frog vestibular organs. To this end different groups of frog isolated semicircular canals were stimulated by means of solutions slightly enriched in K+ (5 mM K(+)-rich solutions are sufficient to produce a strong,(More)
Ionotropic purinergic receptors (P2X) are expressed in endothelial and smooth muscle cells of blood vessels. ATP acting on smooth muscle P2X receptors is able to induce vasoconstriction in different kind of vessels. However, to our knowledge, there are no reports that directly show the activity of these purinergic receptors in native human vascular smooth(More)