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Neuron. 1990 Oct;5(4):471-8.

Protonation of histidine groups inhibits gating of the quisqualate/kainate channel protein in isolated catfish cone horizontal cells.

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Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston 77550.


Increases in the extracellular hydrogen ion concentration ([H+]o) but not the intracellular concentration ([H+]i) antagonized the inward going membrane currents recorded from isolated cone horizontal cells during application of quisqualate, alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionic acid, and kainate. The pK determined from a titration curve was 6.5 with a slope greater than 1, indicating protonation of several histidines. The reduction in membrane current was voltage-independent. The affinity of the agonist for the receptor, the single-channel conductance, and the open time were unaffected by [H+]o. [H+]o antagonism was not the result of charge neutralization such as screening surface charge. Diethylpyrocarbonate, a histidine-modifying reagent, reduced the agonist-induced current, but disulfide- and sulfhydryl-modifying reagents were ineffective. These results suggest that histidine groups on the external face of the channel protein provide a functional site regulating channel gating.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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