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K(+) channel expression distinguishes subpopulations of parvalbumin- and somatostatin-containing neocortical interneurons.

A Chow, A Erisir, C Farb, M S Nadal, A Ozaita, D Lau, E Welker, B Rudy

J. Neurosci., 1999 Nov 1 , 19, 9332-45

Kv3.1 and Kv3.2 K(+) channel proteins form similar voltage-gated K(+) channels with unusual properties, including fast activation at voltages positive to -10 mV and very fast deactivation rates. These properties are thought to facilitate sustained high-frequency firing. Kv3.1 subunits are specifically found in fast-spiking, parvalbumin (PV)-containing cortical interneurons, and recent studies have provided support for a crucial role in the generation of the fast-spiking phenotype. Kv3.2 mRNAs are also found in a small subset of neocortical neurons, although the distribution of these neurons is different. We raised antibodies directed against Kv3.2 proteins and used dual-labeling methods to identify the neocortical neurons expressing Kv3.2 proteins and to determine their subcellular localization. Kv3.2 proteins are prominently expressed in patches in somatic and proximal dendritic membrane as well as in axons and presynaptic terminals of GABAergic interneurons. Kv3.2 subunits are found in all PV-containing neurons in deep cortical layers where they probably form heteromultimeric channels with Kv3.1 subunits. In contrast, in superficial layer PV-positive neurons Kv3.2 immunoreactivity is low, but Kv3.1 is still prominently expressed. Because Kv3.1 and Kv3.2 channels are differentially modulated by protein kinases, these results raise the possibility that the fast-spiking properties of superficial- and deep-layer PV neurons are differentially regulated by neuromodulators. Interestingly, Kv3. 2 but not Kv3.1 proteins are also prominent in a subset of seemingly non-fast-spiking, somatostatin- and calbindin-containing interneurons, suggesting that the Kv3.1-Kv3.2 current type can have functions other than facilitating high-frequency firing.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10531438