- Transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels, as important membrane proteins regulating intracellular calcium (Ca2+i) signaling, are involved in a variety of physiological and pathological processes. Activation and regulation of TRPC are more dependent on membrane or intracellular signals. However, how extracellular signals regulate TRPC6 function remains to be further investigated. Here, we suggest that two distinct small molecules, M085 and GSK1702934A, directly activate TRPC6, both through a mechanism of stimulation of extracellular sites formed by the pore helix (PH) and transmembrane (TM) helix S6.
- Significant progress has been made in understanding the roles of crucial residues/motifs in the channel function of P2X receptors during the pre-structure era. The recent structural determination of P2X receptors allows us to reevaluate the role of those residues/motifs. Residues Arg-309 and Asp-85 (rat P2X4 numbering) are highly conserved throughout the P2X family and were involved in loss-of-function polymorphism in human P2X receptors. Previous studies proposed that they participated in direct ATP binding.
- FMRFamide (Phe-Met-Arg-Phe-NH2)-activated sodium channel (FaNaC) is an amiloride-sensitive sodium channel activated by endogenous tetrapeptide in invertebrates, and belongs to the epithelial sodium channel/degenerin (ENaC/DEG) superfamily. The ENaC/DEG superfamily differs markedly in its means of activation, such as spontaneously opening or gating by mechanical stimuli or tissue acidosis. Recently, it has been observed that a number of ENaC/DEG channels can be activated by small molecules or peptides, indicating that the ligand-gating may be an important feature of this superfamily.