PubMed 15776285

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Kv2.1

Title: Potassium channel gating in adhesion: from an oocyte-silicon to a neuron-astrocyte adhesion contact.

Authors: Volker Kiessling, Stefano Vassanelli

Journal, date & volume: Eur. Biophys. J., 2005 Mar , 34, 113-26

PubMed link:

In a neuron-astrocyte adhesion contact the ionic current due to the opening of voltage-dependent potassium channels has to flow along a narrow intercellular cleft, generating there an extracellular voltage. This voltage might be large enough to affect significantly the dependence of channel gating from the intracellular voltage. In order to test this hypothesis, we considered a Xenopus oocyte expressing voltage-dependent potassium channels adhering to a layer of silicon oxide as a simplified model of cell-cell adhesion; here the cell membrane and silicon oxide are separated by a narrow cleft and form a junction of circular shape. We measured directly the extracellular voltage along the diameter of the cleft and investigated its effect on channel gating using a linear array of field effect transistors integrated in the silicon substrate. On this experimental basis we demonstrated that the voltage dependence of potassium channels is strongly affected by adhesion, as can be predicted using a model of a two-dimensional cable and electrodiffusion theory. Computations based on the model showed that along a neuron-astrocyte adhesion contact the opening of voltage-dependent Kv2.1 potassium channels is significantly reduced with respect to identical channels facing an open extracellular space.