PubMed 24557892

Referenced in Channelpedia wiki pages of: none

Automatically associated channels: KCNK , KCNK2

Title: TREK-king the blood-brain-barrier.

Authors: Stefan Bittner, Tobias Ruck, Juncal Fernández-Orth, Sven G Meuth

Journal, date & volume: J Neuroimmune Pharmacol, 2014 Jun , 9, 293-301

PubMed link:

TWIK-related potassium channel-1 (TREK1, KCNK2) is the most extensively studied member of the two-pore domain potassium (K2P) channel family. Recent studies have already demonstrated a key role in the pathophysiology of depression, pain and neurodegenerative damage pointing towards an important role in a broad spectrum of CNS disorders. The mammalian blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a highly specialized structure and an integral part of the neurovascular unit, which controls the transition of cells and molecules into the CNS. While BBB dysregulation is common in neurologic diseases, the molecular mechanisms involved in this process remain largely unknown. Recently, we were able to describe a role of TREK1 in this context. TREK1 was downregulated in murine and human BBB upon inflammation. Blocking of TREK1 increased lymphocyte migration, while activation had the opposite effect. In TREK1-deficient (Trek1 (-/-) ) mice, brain endothelial cells displayed an inflammatory phenotype and leukocyte trafficking was facilitated, as demonstrated in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model for multiple sclerosis. Here we summarize these findings and discuss the implications in diseases related to BBB dysfunction.