PubMed 22218500

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: Nav1.2 , Slo1

Title: Modulation of voltage-gated sodium channels hyperpolarizes the voltage threshold for activation in spinal motoneurones.

Authors: Kevin E Power, Kevin P Carlin, Brent Fedirchuk

Journal, date & volume: Exp Brain Res, 2012 Mar , 217, 311-22

PubMed link:

Previous work has shown that motoneurone excitability is enhanced by a hyperpolarization of the membrane potential at which an action potential is initiated (V(th)) at the onset, and throughout brainstem-evoked fictive locomotion in the adult decerebrate cat and neonatal rat. Modeling work has suggested the modulation of Na(+) conductance as a putative mechanism underlying this state-dependent change in excitability. This study sought to determine whether modulation of voltage-gated sodium channels could induce V(th) hyperpolarization. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were made from antidromically identified lumbar spinal motoneurones in an isolated neonatal rat spinal cord preparation. Recordings were made with and without the bath application of veratridine, a plant alkaloid neurotoxin that acts as a sodium channel modulator. As seen in HEK 293 cells expressing Nav1.2 channels, veratridine-modified channels demonstrated a hyperpolarizing shift in their voltage-dependence of activation and a slowing of inactivation that resulted in an enhanced inward current in response to voltage ramp stimulations. In the native rat motoneurones, veratridine-modified sodium channels induced a hyperpolarization of V(th) in all 29 neonatal rat motoneurones examined (mean hyperpolarization: -6.6 ± 4.3 mV). V(th) hyperpolarization was not due to the effects on Ca(2+) and/or K(+) channels as blockade of these currents did not alter V(th). Veratridine also significantly increased the amplitude of persistent inward currents (PICs; mean increase: 72.5 ± 98.5 pA) evoked in response to slow depolarizing current ramps. However, the enhancement of the PIC amplitude had a slower time course than the hyperpolarization of V(th), and the PIC onset voltage could be either depolarized or hyperpolarized, suggesting that PIC facilitation did not mediate the V(th) hyperpolarization. We therefore suggest that central neuronal circuitry in mammals could affect V(th) in a mechanism similar to that of veratridine, by inducing a negative shift in the activation voltage of sodium channels. Furthermore, this shift appears to be independent of the enhancement of PICs.