PubMed 22291146

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Kir1.1

Title: Ion selectivity and current saturation in inward-rectifier K+ channels.

Authors: Lei Yang, Johan Edvinsson, Henry Sackin, Lawrence G Palmer

Journal, date & volume: J. Gen. Physiol., 2012 Feb , 139, 145-57

PubMed link:

We investigated the features of the inward-rectifier K channel Kir1.1 (ROMK) that underlie the saturation of currents through these channels as a function of permeant ion concentration. We compared values of maximal currents and apparent K(m) for three permeant ions: K(+), Rb(+), and NH(4)(+). Compared with K(+) (i(max) = 4.6 pA and K(m) = 10 mM at -100 mV), Rb(+) had a lower permeability, a lower i(max) (1.8 pA), and a higher K(m) (26 mM). For NH(4)(+), the permeability was reduced more with smaller changes in i(max) (3.7 pA) and K(m) (16 mM). We assessed the role of a site near the outer mouth of channel in the saturation process. This site could be occupied by either permeant ions or low-affinity blocking ions such as Na(+), Li(+), Mg(2+), and Ca(2+) with similar voltage dependence (apparent valence, 0.15-0.20). It prefers Mg(2+) over Ca(2+) and has a monovalent cation selectivity, based on the ability to displace Mg(2+), of K(+) > Li(+) ∼ Na(+) > Rb(+) ∼ NH(4)(+). Conversely, in the presence of Mg(2+), the K(m) for K(+) conductance was substantially increased. The ability of Mg(2+) to block the channels was reduced when four negatively charged amino acids in the extracellular domain of the channel were mutated to neutral residues. The apparent K(m) for K(+) conduction was unchanged by these mutations under control conditions but became sensitive to the presence of external negative charges when residual divalent cations were chelated with EDTA. The results suggest that a binding site in the outer mouth of the pore controls current saturation. Permeability is more affected by interactions with other sites within the selectivity filter. Most features of permeation (and block) could be simulated by a five-state kinetic model of ion movement through the channel.