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Ion channels
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The sodium channel Nav1.5a is the predominant isoform expressed in adult mouse dorsal root ganglia and exhibits distinct inactivation properties from the full-length Nav1.5 channel.

Niall C H Kerr, Zhan Gao, Fiona E Holmes, Sally-Ann Hobson, Jules C Hancox, David Wynick, Andrew F James

Mol. Cell. Neurosci., 2007 Jun , 35, 283-91

Nav1.5 is the principal voltage-gated sodium channel expressed in heart, and is also expressed at lower abundance in embryonic dorsal root ganglia (DRG) with little or no expression reported postnatally. We report here the expression of Nav1.5 mRNA isoforms in adult mouse and rat DRG. The major isoform of mouse DRG is Nav1.5a, which encodes a protein with an IDII/III cytoplasmic loop reduced by 53 amino acids. Western blot analysis of adult mouse DRG membrane proteins confirmed the expression of Nav1.5 protein. The Na+ current produced by the Nav1.5a isoform has a voltage-dependent inactivation significantly shifted to more negative potentials (by approximately 5 mV) compared to the full-length Nav1.5 when expressed in the DRG neuroblastoma cell line ND7/23. These results imply that the alternatively spliced exon 18 of Nav1.5 plays a role in channel inactivation and that Nav1.5a is likely to make a significant contribution to adult DRG neuronal function.