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The GIRK1 brain variant GIRK1d and its functional impact on heteromultimeric GIRK channels.

Bibiane Steinecker, Christian Rosker, Wolfgang Schreibmayer

J. Recept. Signal Transduct. Res., 2007 , 27, 369-82

Four isoforms of GIRK channels (GIRK1-4) have been described in humans. In addition, several splice variants of more or less unknown function have been identified from several tissues and species. In our study, we investigated the structure and function of a new variant of GIRK1 that has been isolated from rat brain. Because of wide similarities with a previously described variant, we also named it GIRK1d. This variant lacks a region corresponding to exon 2 of full-length GIRK1, leading to a truncated GIRK1 that lacks the main part of the C-terminus. To study GIRK1d we used the Xenopus laevis expression system, the two-electrode voltage clamp method, and confocal laser scan microscopy. We found that our GIRK1d variant preferentially binds GIRK2 or GIRK4 over GIRK1. Furthermore, it largely reduces conductances mediated by GIRK1/2 or GIRK1/4 hetero-multimeric channels when coexpressed and nearly totally abolishes currents when replacing GIRK1 in hetero-multimeric channels.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18097938