PubMed 11533126

Title: SK3 is an important component of K(+) channels mediating the afterhyperpolarization in cultured rat SCG neurones.

Authors: R Hosseini, D C Benton, P M Dunn, D H Jenkinson, G W Moss

Journal, date & volume: J. Physiol. (Lond.), 2001 Sep 1 , 535, 323-34

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1. Our aim was to identify the small-conductance Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channel(s) (SK) underlying the apamin-sensitive afterhyperpolarization (AHP) in rat superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurones. 2. Degenerate oligonucleotide primers designed to the putative calmodulin-binding domain conserved in all mammalian SK channel sequences were employed to detect SK DNA in a cDNA library from rat SCG. Only a single band, corresponding to a fragment of the rSK3 gene, was amplified. 3. Northern blot analysis employing a PCR-generated rSK3 fragment showed the presence of mRNA coding for SK3 in SCG as well in other rat peripheral tissues including adrenal gland and liver. 4. The same rSK3 fragment enabled the isolation of a full-length rSK3 cDNA from the library. Its sequence was closely similar to, but not identical with, that of the previously reported rSK3 gene. 5. Expression of the rSK3 gene in mammalian cell lines (CHO, HEK cells) caused the appearance of a K(+) conductance with SK channel properties. 6. The application of selective SK blocking agents (including apamin, scyllatoxin and newer non-peptidic compounds) showed these homomeric SK3 channels to have essentially the same pharmacological characteristics as the SCG afterhyperpolarization, but to differ from those of homomeric SK1 and SK2 channels. 7. Immunohistochemistry using a rSK3 antipeptide antibody revealed the presence of SK3 protein in the cell bodies and processes of cultured SCG neurones. 8. Taken together, these results identify SK3 as a major component of the SK channels responsible for the afterhyperpolarization of cultured rat SCG neurones.