National Center for
3VOU: The Crystal Structure Of Nak-navsulp Chimera Channel
The C-terminal helical bundle of the tetrameric prokaryotic sodium channel accelerates the inactivation rate
Nat Commun (2012) 3 p.793
Most tetrameric channels have cytosolic domains to regulate their functions, including channel inactivation. Here we show that the cytosolic C-terminal region of NavSulP, a prokaryotic voltage-gated sodium channel cloned from Sulfitobacter pontiacus, accelerates channel inactivation. The crystal structure of the C-terminal region of NavSulP grafted into the C-terminus of a NaK channel revealed that the NavSulP C-terminal region forms a four-helix bundle. Point mutations of the residues involved in the intersubunit interactions of the four-helix bundle destabilized the tetramer of the channel and reduced the inactivation rate. The four-helix bundle was directly connected to the inner helix of the pore domain, and a mutation increasing the rigidity of the inner helix also reduced the inactivation rate. These findings suggest that the NavSulP four-helix bundle has important roles not only in stabilizing the tetramer, but also in accelerating the inactivation rate, through promotion of the conformational change of the inner helix.