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Regulation and properties of KCNQ1 (K(V)LQT1) and impact of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator.

A Boucherot, R Schreiber, K Kunzelmann

J. Membr. Biol., 2001 Jul 1 , 182, 39-47

The K+ channel KCNQ1 (K(V)LQT1) is a voltage-gated K+ channel, coexpressed with regulatory subunits such as KCNE1 (IsK, mink) or KCNE3, depending on the tissue examined. Here, we investigate regulation and properties of human and rat KCNQ1 and the impact of regulators such as KCNE1 and KCNE3. Because the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) has also been suggested to regulate KCNQ1 channels we studied the effects of CFTR on KCNQ1 in Xenopus oocytes. Expression of both human and rat KCNQ1 induced time dependent K+ currents that were sensitive to Ba2+ and 293B. Coexpression with KCNE1 delayed voltage activation, while coexpression with KCNE3 accelerated current activation. KCNQ1 currents were activated by an increase in intracellular cAMP, independent of coexpression with KCNE1 or KCNE3. cAMP dependent activation was abolished in N-terminal truncated hKCNQ1 but was still detectable after deletion of a single PKA phosphorylation motif. In the presence but not in the absence of KCNE1 or KCNE3, K+ currents were activated by the Ca2+ ionophore ionomycin. Coexpression of CFTR with either human or rat KCNQ1 had no impact on regulation of KCNQ1 K+ currents by cAMP but slightly shifted the concentration response curve for 293B. Thus, KCNQ1 expressed in Xenopus oocytes is regulated by cAMP and Ca2+ but is not affected by CFTR.