XB-ART-58222Commun Biol 2020 Jul 08;31:356. doi: 10.1038/s42003-020-1089-8.
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The ubiquitous flavonoid quercetin is an atypical KCNQ potassium channel activator.
Many commonly consumed plants are used as folk medicines, often with unclear molecular mechanisms. Recent studies uncovered the ubiquitous and influential KCNQ family of voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels as a therapeutic target for several medicinal plant compounds. Capers - immature flower buds of Capparis spinosa - have been consumed for food and medicinal purposes for millennia. Here, we show that caper extract hyperpolarizes cells expressing KCNQ1 or KCNQ2/3 Kv channels. Capers are the richest known natural source of quercetin, the most consumed dietary flavonoid. Quercetin potentiated KCNQ1/KCNE1, KCNQ2/3 and KCNQ4 currents but, unusually, not KCNQ5. Strikingly, quercetin augmented both activation and inactivation of KCNQ1, via a unique KCNQ activation mechanism involving sites atop the voltage sensor and in the pore. The findings uncover a novel potential molecular basis for therapeutic effects of quercetin-rich foods and a new chemical space for atypical modes of KCNQ channel modulation.
PubMed ID: 32641720
Article link: Commun Biol
Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: kcnq1 kcnq4 kcnq5
References [+] :
Barhanin, K(V)LQT1 and lsK (minK) proteins associate to form the I(Ks) cardiac potassium current. 1996, Pubmed, Xenbase