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Scientific Reports

Role of the ion channel extracellular collar in AMPA receptor gating

Published on 04.21.2017 in Scientific Reports

Authors: Maria V. Yelshanskaya, Samaneh Mesbahi-Vasey, Maria G. KurnikovaAlexander I. Sobolevsky

Abstract

AMPA subtype ionotropic glutamate receptors mediate fast excitatory neurotransmission and are implicated in numerous neurological diseases. Ionic currents through AMPA receptor channels can be allosterically regulated via different sites on the receptor protein. We used site-directed mutagenesis and patch-clamp recordings to probe the ion channel extracellular collar, the binding region for noncompetitive allosteric inhibitors. We found position and substitution-dependent effects for introduced mutations at this region on AMPA receptor gating. The results of mutagenesis suggested that the transmembrane domains M1, M3 and M4, which contribute to the ion channel extracellular collar, undergo significant relative displacement during gating. We used molecular dynamics simulations to predict an AMPA receptor open state structure and rationalize the results of mutagenesis. We conclude that the ion channel extracellular collar plays a distinct role in gating and represents a hub for powerful allosteric modulation of AMPA receptor function that can be used for developing novel therapeutics.

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