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Nat Commun. 2019 Aug 20;10(1):3740. doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-11733-5.

Visualizing structural transitions of ligand-dependent gating of the TRPM2 channel.

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Department of Biochemistry, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, 27710, USA.
Department of Integrative Structural and Computational Biology, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, 92037, USA.
Genome Integrity and Structural Biology Laboratory, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, Research Triangle Park, NC, 27709, USA.
Department of Biochemistry, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC, 27710, USA.


The transient receptor potential melastatin 2 (TRPM2) channel plays a key role in redox sensation in many cell types. Channel activation requires binding of both ADP-ribose (ADPR) and Ca2+. The recently published TRPM2 structures from Danio rerio in the ligand-free and the ADPR/Ca2+-bound conditions represent the channel in closed and open states, which uncovered substantial tertiary and quaternary conformational rearrangements. However, it is unclear how these rearrangements are achieved within the tetrameric channel during channel gating. Here we report the cryo-electron microscopy structures of Danio rerio TRPM2 in the absence of ligands, in complex with Ca2+ alone, and with both ADPR and Ca2+, resolved to ~4.3 Å, ~3.8 Å, and ~4.2 Å, respectively. In contrast to the published results, our studies capture ligand-bound TRPM2 structures in two-fold symmetric intermediate states, offering a glimpse of the structural transitions that bridge the closed and open conformations.

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