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J Biol Chem. 2008 Mar 7;283(10):6162-74. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M706535200. Epub 2008 Jan 4.

Calcium plays a central role in the sensitization of TRPV3 channel to repetitive stimulations.

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  • 1Department of Neuroscience and Center for Molecular Neurobiology, Biophysics Graduate Program, Ohio State University, 1060 Carmack Road, Columbus, OH 43210, USA.


Transient receptor potential channels are involved in sensing chemical and physical changes inside and outside of cells. TRPV3 is highly expressed in skin keratinocytes, where it forms a nonselective cation channel activated by hot temperatures in the innocuous and noxious range. The channel has also been implicated in flavor sensation in oral and nasal cavities as well as being a molecular target of some allergens and skin sensitizers. TRPV3 is unique in that its activity is sensitized upon repetitive stimulations. Here we investigated the role of calcium ions in the sensitization of TRPV3 to repetitive stimulations. We show that the sensitization is accompanied by a decrease of Ca(2+)-dependent channel inhibition mediated by calmodulin acting at an N-terminal site (amino acids 108-130) and by an acidic residue (Asp(641)) at the pore loop of TRPV3. These sites also contribute to the voltage dependence of TRPV3. During sensitization, the channel displayed a gradual shift of the voltage dependence to more negative potentials as well as uncoupling from voltage sensing. The initial response to ligand stimulation was increased and sensitization to repetitive stimulations was decreased by increasing the intracellular Ca(2+)-buffering strength, inhibiting calmodulin, or disrupting the calmodulin-binding site. Mutation of Asp(641) to Asn abolished the high affinity extracellular Ca(2+)-mediated inhibition and greatly facilitated the activation of TRPV3. We conclude that Ca(2+) inhibits TRPV3 from both the extracellular and intracellular sides. The inhibition is sequentially reduced, appearing as sensitization to repetitive stimulations.

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