PubMed 15206817

Title: Intramembrane charge movement associated with endogenous K+ channel activity in HEK-293 cells.

Authors: Guillermo Avila, Alejandro Sandoval, Ricardo Felix

Journal, date & volume: Cell. Mol. Neurobiol., 2004 Jun , 24, 317-30

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1. The use of molecular biology in combination with electrophysiology in the HEK-293 cell line has given fascinating insights into neuronal ion channel function. Nevertheless, to fully understand the properties of channels exogenously expressed in these cells, a detailed evaluation of endogenous channels is indispensable. 2. Previous studies have shown the expression of endogenous voltage-gated K+, Ca2+, and Cl- channels and this predicts that changes in membrane potential will cause intramembrane charge movement, though this gating charge translocation remain undefined. Here, we confirm this prediction by performing patch-clamp experiments to record ionic and gating currents. Our data show that HEK-293 cells express at least two types of K+-selective endogenous channels which sustain the majority of the ionic current, and exclude a significant contribution from Ca2+ and Cl- channels to the whole-cell current. 3. Gating currents were unambiguously resolved after ionic current blockade enabling this first report of intramembrane charge movement in HEK-293 cells arising entirely from endogenous K+ channel activity, and providing valuable information concerning the activation mechanism of voltage-gated K+ channels in these cells.