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Biophys J. 2008 Oct;95(8):3738-52. doi: 10.1529/biophysj.108.137182. Epub 2008 Jul 18.

Modeling Ca2+ feedback on a single inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor and its modulation by Ca2+ buffers.

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Department of Physics, Xiamen University, Xiamen, China.


The inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor/channel (IP(3)R) is a major regulator of intracellular Ca(2+) signaling, and liberates Ca(2+) ions from the endoplasmic reticulum in response to binding at cytosolic sites for both IP(3) and Ca(2+). Although the steady-state gating properties of the IP(3)R have been extensively studied and modeled under conditions of fixed [IP(3)] and [Ca(2+)], little is known about how Ca(2+) flux through a channel may modulate the gating of that same channel by feedback onto activating and inhibitory Ca(2+) binding sites. We thus simulated the dynamics of Ca(2+) self-feedback on monomeric and tetrameric IP(3)R models. A major conclusion is that self-activation depends crucially on stationary cytosolic Ca(2+) buffers that slow the collapse of the local [Ca(2+)] microdomain after closure. This promotes burst-like reopenings by the rebinding of Ca(2+) to the activating site; whereas inhibitory actions are substantially independent of stationary buffers but are strongly dependent on the location of the inhibitory Ca(2+) binding site on the IP(3)R in relation to the channel pore.

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