Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Gen Physiol. 1988 Nov;92(5):667-83.

K+ transport properties of K+ channels in the plasma membrane of Vicia faba guard cells.

Author information

Max-Planck-Institut für Biophysikalische Chemie, Abteilung Membranbiophysik, Göttingen, Federal Republic of Germany.


Electrical properties of the plasma membrane of guard cell protoplasts isolated from stomates of Vicia faba leaves were studied by application of the whole-cell configuration of the patch-clamp technique. The two types of K+ currents that have recently been identified in guard cells may allow efflux of K+ during stomatal closing, and uptake of K+ during stomatal opening (Schroeder et al., 1987). A detailed characterization of ion transport properties of the inward-rectifying (IK+,in) and the outward-rectifying (IK+,out) K+ conductance is presented here. The permeability ratios of IK+,in and IK+,out currents for K+ over monovalent alkali metal ions were determined. The resulting permeability sequences (PK+ greater than PRb+ greater than PNa+ greater than PLi+ much greater than PCs+) corresponded closely to the ion specificity of guard cell movements in V. faba. Neither K+ currents exhibited significant inactivation when K+ channels were activated for prolonged periods (greater than 10 min). The absence of inactivation may permit long durations of K+ fluxes, which occur during guard cell movements. Activation potentials of inward K+ currents were not shifted when external K+ concentrations were changed. This differs strongly from the behavior of inward-rectifying K+ channels in animal tissue. Blue light and fusicoccin induce hyperpolarization by stimulation of an electrogenic pump. From slow-whole-cell recordings it was concluded that electrogenic pumps require cytoplasmic substrates for full activation and that the magnitude of the pump current is sufficient to drive K+ uptake through IK+,in channels. First, direct evidence was gained for the hypothesis that IK+,in channels are a molecular pathway for K+ accumulation by the finding that IK+,in was blocked by Al3+ ions, which are known to inhibit stomatal opening but not closing. The results presented in this study strongly support a prominent role for IK+,in and IK+,out channels in K+ transport across the plasma membrane of guard cells.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center