PubMed 22025662

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: KCNQ1 , Kv7.1 , Slo1

Title: Biophysical properties of slow potassium channels in human embryonic stem cell derived cardiomyocytes implicate subunit stoichiometry.

Authors: Kai Wang, Cecile Terrenoire, Kevin Sampson, Vivek Iyer, Jeremiah D Osteen, Jonathan Lu, Gordon Keller, Darrell N, Robert S Kass

Journal, date & volume: , 2011 Oct 24 , ,

PubMed link:

Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) are an important cellular model for studying ion channel function in the context of a human cardiac cell and will provide a wealth of information about both heritable arrhythmias and acquired electrophysiological disorders. However, detailed electrophysiological characterization of the important cardiac ion channels has been so far overlooked. Because mutations in the gene for the I(Ks) α subunit, KCNQ1, constitute the majority of long QT syndrome (LQT-1) cases, we have carried out a detailed biophysical analysis of this channel expressed in hESCs to establish baseline I(Ks) channel biophysical properties in cardiac myocytes derived from hESCs (hESC-CMs). I(Ks) channels are heteromultimeric proteins consisting of four identical α-subunits (KCNQ1) assembled with auxiliary β-subunits (KCNE1). We found that the half-maximal I(Ks) activation voltage in hESC-CMs and in myocytes derived from human induced pluripotent stems cells (hiPSC-CMs) falls between that of KCNQ1 channels expressed alone and with full complement of KCNE1, the major KCNE subunit expressed in hESC-CMs as shown by qPCR analysis. Overexpression of KCNE1 by transfection of hESC-CMs markedly shifted and slowed native I(Ks) activation implying assembly of additional KCNE1 subunits with endogenous channels. Our results in hESC-CMs, which indicate an I(Ks) subunit stoichiometry that can be altered by variable KCNE1 expression, suggest the possibility for variable I(Ks) function in the developing heart, in different tissues in the heart, and in disease. This establishes a new baseline for I(Ks) channel properties in myocytes derived from pluripotent stem cells and will guide future studies in patient-specific hiPSCs.