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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1985 Dec 17;133(2):688-95.

Is the C-terminal arm of lens gap junction channel protein the channel gate?


Lens gap junction channels are studied in a reconstituted system obtained by incorporating into liposomes, with or without calmodulin, the lens junction protein (MIP26) and its trypsin-cleaved product (MIP21) that lacks the C-terminal arm. Channel permeability is studied with an osmotic swelling assay. MIP26 and MIP21 liposomes swell in sucrose or polyethyleneglycol with or without Ca++ indicating the presence of large channels. Without Ca++, MIP26 and MIP21 liposomes swell in both permeants. With Ca++, MIP26-calmodulin liposomes do not swell in either permeant, indicating complete channel closure, while MIP21-calmodulin liposomes swell in sucrose but not in polyethyleneglycol. This suggests that the C-terminal arm participates in channel gating.

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