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FEBS Lett. 2002 Sep 25;528(1-3):272-8.

Alternative splicing of the rat Ca(v)3.3 T-type calcium channel gene produces variants with distinct functional properties(1).

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Department of Pharmacology, University of Virginia, P.O. Box 800735, Charlottesville 22908-0735, USA.


Molecular diversity in T-type Ca(2+) channels is produced by expression of three genes, and alternative splicing of those genes. Prompted by differences noted between rat and human Ca(v)3.3 sequences, we searched for splice variants. We cloned six variants, which are produced by splicing at exon 33 and exon 34. Expression of the variants differed between brain regions. The electrophysiological properties of the variants displayed similar voltage-dependent gating, but differed in their kinetic properties. The functional impact of splicing was inter-related, suggesting an interaction. We conclude that alternative splicing of the Ca(v)3.3 gene produces channels with distinct properties.

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