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Voltage-Gated Potassium Channels: A Structural Examination of Selectivity and Gating.

TitleVoltage-Gated Potassium Channels: A Structural Examination of Selectivity and Gating.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsKim DM, Nimigean CM
JournalCold Spring Harb Perspect Biol
Date Published2016 May 02

Voltage-gated potassium channels play a fundamental role in the generation and propagation of the action potential. The discovery of these channels began with predictions made by early pioneers, and has culminated in their extensive functional and structural characterization by electrophysiological, spectroscopic, and crystallographic studies. With the aid of a variety of crystal structures of these channels, a highly detailed picture emerges of how the voltage-sensing domain reports changes in the membrane electric field and couples this to conformational changes in the activation gate. In addition, high-resolution structural and functional studies of K(+) channel pores, such as KcsA and MthK, offer a comprehensive picture on how selectivity is achieved in K(+) channels. Here, we illustrate the remarkable features of voltage-gated potassium channels and explain the mechanisms used by these machines with experimental data.

Alternate JournalCold Spring Harb Perspect Biol
PubMed ID27141052