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FEBS Lett. 2006 May 22;580(12):2853-9. Epub 2006 Apr 12.

Cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels in sensory transduction.

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International School for Advanced Studies, S.I.S.S.A., Sector of Neurobiology, Via Beirut 2-4, 34014 Trieste, Italy.


Cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels, directly activated by the binding of cyclic nucleotides, were first discovered in retinal rods, cones and olfactory sensory neurons. In the visual and olfactory systems, CNG channels mediate sensory transduction by conducting cationic currents carried primarily by sodium and calcium ions. In olfactory transduction, calcium in combination with calmodulin exerts a negative feedback on CNG channels that is the main molecular mechanism responsible for fast adaptation in olfactory sensory neurons. Six mammalian CNG channel genes are known and some human visual disorders are caused by mutations in retinal rod or cone CNG genes.

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