Molecular Driving Forces underlying Channel Gating
Members of the voltage-gated ion channel superfamily (VGICs) play a central role in
electrical excitability in mammals. Most of them are activated by voltage and, in many
instances, they are also regulated by other stimuli namely, temperature, mechanical
stretch and small molecule ligands. The molecular mechanisms involved in sensing
and transducing stimuli to control conduction through the ion pore remains poorly understood.
In the first part of the presentation, I will describe how a newly developed
single molecule method sheds light on early gating transitions that underlie activation
of human pacemaker ion channels. In the second part, I will discuss our progress in
understanding the molecular mechanisms that determine temperature-sensitivity in
members of VGIC superfamily.
Host: W. Sandtner