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Neuron. 1997 Jul;19(1):165-74.

EGL-36 Shaw channels regulate C. elegans egg-laying muscle activity.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston 02114, USA.


The C. elegans egl-36 gene encodes a Shaw-type potassium channel that regulates egg-laying behavior. Gain of function [egl-36(gf)] and dominant negative [egl-36(dn)] mutations in egl-36 cause reciprocal defects in egg laying. An egl-36::gfp reporter is expressed in the egg-laying muscles and in a few other tissues. Expression of an egl-36(gf) cDNA in the egg-laying muscles causes behavioral defects similar to those observed in egl-36(gf) mutants. Gain of function EGL-36 subunits form channels that are active at more negative potentials than wild-type channels. The egl-36(gf) alleles correspond to missense mutations in an amino terminal subunit assembly domain (E138K) and in the S6 transmembrane domain (P435S), neither of which were previously implicated in the voltage dependence of channel activation. Altogether, these results suggest that EGL-36 channels regulate the excitability of the egg-laying muscles.

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