Point mutations identify the glutamate binding pocket of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor as major site of conantokin-G inhibition.
Conantokin-G (Con-G), a gamma-carboxylglutamate (Gla) containing peptide derived from the venom of the marine cone snail Conus geographus, acts as a selective and potent inhibitor of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors. Here, the effect of Con-G on recombinant NMDA receptors carrying point mutations within the glycine and glutamate binding pockets of the NR1 and NR2B subunits was studied using whole-cell voltage-clamp recording from cRNA injected Xenopus oocytes. At wild-type receptors, glutamate-induced currents were inhibited by Con-G in a dose-dependent manner at concentrations of 0.1-100 microM. Substitution of selected residues within the NR2B subunit reduced the inhibitory potency of Con-G, whereas similar mutations in the NR1 subunit had little effect. These results indicate a selective interaction of Con-G with the glutamate binding pocket of the NMDA receptor. Homology-based molecular modeling of the glutamate binding region based on the known structure of the glutamate binding site of the AMPA receptor protein GluR2 suggests how selected amino acid side chains of NR2B might interact with specific residues of Con-G.
PubMed ID: 11640930
Article link: Neuropharmacology.
Genes referenced: gla gria2 grin1 grin2b nat8 nodal1 snai1