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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A August 17, 2010; 107 (33): 14887-92.

Direct inhibition of P/Q-type voltage-gated Ca2+ channels by Gem does not require a direct Gem/Cavbeta interaction.

Fan M , Buraei Z , Luo HR , Levenson-Palmer R , Yang J .

The Rem, Rem2, Rad, and Gem/Kir (RGK) family of small GTP-binding proteins potently inhibits high voltage-activated (HVA) Ca(2+) channels, providing a powerful means of modulating neural, endocrine, and muscle functions. The molecular mechanisms of this inhibition are controversial and remain largely unclear. RGK proteins associate directly with Ca(2+) channel beta subunits (Ca(v)beta), and this interaction is widely thought to be essential for their inhibitory action. In this study, we investigate the molecular underpinnings of Gem inhibition of P/Q-type Ca(2+) channels. We find that a purified Gem protein markedly and acutely suppresses P/Q channel activity in inside-out membrane patches, that this action requires Ca(v)beta but not the Gem/Ca(v)beta interaction, and that Gem coimmunoprecipitates with the P/Q channel alpha(1) subunit (Ca(v)alpha(1)) in a Ca(v)beta-independent manner. By constructing chimeras between P/Q channels and Gem-insensitive low voltage-activated T-type channels, we identify a region encompassing transmembrane segments S1, S2, and S3 in the second homologous repeat of Ca(v)alpha(1) critical for Gem inhibition. Exchanging this region between P/Q and T channel Ca(v)alpha(1) abolishes Gem inhibition of P/Q channels and confers Ca(v)beta-dependent Gem inhibition to a chimeric T channel that also carries the P/Q I-II loop (a cytoplasmic region of Ca(v)alpha(1) that binds Ca(v)beta). Our results challenge the prevailing view regarding the role of Ca(v)beta in RGK inhibition of high voltage-activated Ca(2+) channels and prompt a paradigm in which Gem directly binds and inhibits Ca(v)beta-primed Ca(v)alpha(1) on the plasma membrane.

PubMed ID: 20679232
PMC ID: PMC2930421
Article link: Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A
Grant support: [+]
Genes referenced: gem gmnn rem1 rem2 rrad

References [+] :
Arias, Transfer of beta subunit regulation from high to low voltage-gated Ca2+ channels. 2005, Pubmed

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