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Kir6.2DeltaC26 channel traffics to plasma membrane by constitutive exocytosis.

Ping Zhao, Wei Li, Yong-ming Dong, Dan Zhu, An-Lian Qu, Tao Xu, Zheng-xing Wu

Acta Biochim. Biophys. Sin. (Shanghai), 2006 Feb , 38, 136-41

Adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-sensitive K+ (KATP) channels regulate many cellular functions by coupling the metabolic state of the cell to the changes in membrane potential. Truncation of C-terminal 26 amino acid residues of Kir6.2 protein (Kir6.2DeltaC26) deletes its endoplasmic reticulum retention signal, allowing functional expression of Kir6.2 in the absence of sulfonylurea receptor subunit. pEGFP-Kir6.2DeltaC26 and pKir6.2DeltaC26-IRES2-EGFP expression plasmids were constructed and transfected into HEK293 cells. We identified that Kir6.2DeltaC26 was localized on the plasma membrane and trafficked to the plasmalemma by means of constitutive exocytosis of Kir6.2DeltaC26 transport vesicles, using epi-fluorescence and total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy. Our electrophysiological data showed that Kir6.2DeltaC26 alone expressed KATP currents, whereas EGFP-Kir6.2DeltaC26 fusion protein displayed no KATP channel activity.