Membrane voltage modulates the GABA(A) receptor gating in cultured rat hippocampal neurons.
ABSTRACT The kinetics of GABAergic currents in neurons is known to be modulated by the membrane voltage but the underlying mechanisms have not been fully explored. In particular, the impact of membrane potential on the GABA(A) receptor gating has not been elucidated. In the present study, the effect of membrane voltage on current responses elicited by ultrafast GABA applications was studied in cultured hippocampal neurons. The current to voltage relationship (I-V) for responses to saturating [GABA] (10 mM) showed an inward rectification (slope conductance at positive voltages was 0.62 +/- 0.05 of that at negative potentials). On the contrary, I-V for currents evoked by low [GABA] (1 microM) showed an outward rectification. The onset of currents elicited by saturating [GABA] was significantly accelerated at positive potentials. Analysis of currents evoked by prolonged applications of saturating [GABA] revealed that positive voltages significantly increased the rate and extent of desensitization. The onsets of current responses to non-saturating [GABA] were significantly accelerated at positive voltages indicating an enhancement of the binding rate. However, at low [GABA] at which the onset rate is expected to approach an asymptote set by opening/closing and unbinding rates, no significant modification of current onset by voltage was observed. Quantitative analysis based on model simulations indicated that the major effect of membrane depolarization was to increase the rates of binding, desensitization and of opening as well as to slightly reduce the rate of exit from desensitization. In conclusion, we provide evidence that membrane voltage affects the GABA(A) receptor microscopic gating.
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- "The rationale for accepting such a functional difference stems from the fact that the ion channel has been reported to be a simple ohmic pore, conducting anions equally well in both directions across the membrane (Bormann , 1988; Angelotti and Macdonald, 1993). It has been reported that the ion channel exhibits varying degrees of rectification (Krishek and Smart, 2001; Pytel et al., 2006; Pavlov et al., 2009), which may not be attributable simply to asymmetry in the chloride concentration across the membrane , as predicted by the constant field equation (Goldman, This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health National Institute of General Medical Sciences [Grant GM0739591]. "
ABSTRACT: The GABA type A receptor (GABA(A)R) is expressed ubiquitously throughout the brain and is a target for many therapeutic agents, including general anesthetics and benzodiazepines, which enhance receptor function by increasing the open probability (P(o)) of the ion channel. It is commonplace for in vitro studies of receptor pharmacological characteristics to use negative membrane holding potentials to mimic the resting potential of neurons and symmetrical chloride to eliminate Goldman rectification, which results in chloride flow in the opposite direction, compared with in vivo conditions. This critical difference is usually overlooked because the GABA(A)R has been reported to behave as an ohmic pore, but our results show that the current-voltage relationship is nonlinear with respect to P(o). Specifically, we found that currents were outwardly rectifying at low P(o) and linear at high P(o). We confirmed the correlation between P(o) and rectification with a partial agonist, piperidine-4-sulfonic acid, and a gating-impaired mutation, α1(L277A); both exhibited enhanced outward rectification. Furthermore, this correlation was independent of Goldman rectification and persisted under altered chloride gradient conditions, which suggests that rectification is linked to the direction of chloride flux. Finally, our results showed that the degree of potentiation by general anesthetics (etomidate, propofol, and isoflurane) was greater at negative membrane potentials. Traditional in vitro experiments thus overestimate the action of positive allosteric modulators of the GABA(A)R. Our results show that the direction of the driving force on the permeant ion, as well as P(o), must be considered together for a complete understanding of drug actions on ligand-gated ion channels.Molecular pharmacology 02/2012; 81(2):189-97. DOI:10.1124/mol.111.074476 · 4.12 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Recent studies have indicated that changes in extracellular pH and in membrane voltage affect the gamma-amino-n-butyric acid type A receptor gating mainly by altering desensitization and binding. To test whether the effects of membrane potential and pH are additive, their combined actions were investigated. By analyzing the current responses to rapid gamma-amino-n-butyric acid applications, we found that the current to voltage relationship was close to linear at acid pH but the increasing pH induced an inward rectification. Desensitization was enhanced at depolarizing potentials, but this strongly depended on pH, being weak at acidic and strong at basic pH values. A similar trend was observed for the onset rate of responses to saturating gamma-amino-n-butyric acid concentration. These data provide evidence that the voltage sensitivity of GABAA receptors depends on extracellular pH.Neuroreport 12/2005; 16(17):1951-4. DOI:10.1097/01.wnr.0000187631.83751.9b · 1.64 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Recent analysis of current responses to exogenous GABA applications recorded from excised patches indicated that membrane voltage affected the GABAA receptor gating mainly by altering desensitization and binding [M. Pytel, K. Mercik, J.W. Mozrzymas, Membrane voltage modulates the GABAA receptor gating in cultured rat hippocampal neurons, Neuropharmacology, in press]. In order investigate the impact of such voltage effect on GABAA receptors in conditions of synaptic transmission, mIPSCs and current responses to rapid GABA applications were recorded from the same culture of rat hippocampal neurons. We found that I-V relationship for mIPSCs amplitudes showed a clear outward rectification while for current responses an inward rectification was seen, except for very low GABA concentrations. A clear shift in amplitude cumulative distributions indicated that outward rectification resulted from the voltage effect on the majority of mIPSCs. Moreover, the decaying phase of mIPSCs was clearly slowed down at positive voltages and this effect was represented by a shift in cumulative distributions of weighted decaying time constants. In contrast, deactivation of current responses was only slightly affected by membrane depolarization. These data indicate that the mechanisms whereby the membrane voltage modulates synaptic and extrasynaptic receptors are qualitatively different but the mechanism underlying this difference is not clear.Neuroscience Letters 02/2006; 393(2-3):189-93. DOI:10.1016/j.neulet.2005.09.082 · 2.06 Impact Factor