Electrophysiological and biochemical evidence that DEG/ENaC cation channels are composed of nine subunits.

Snyder PM, Cheng C, Prince LS, Rogers JC, Welsh MJ
J Biol Chem. 1998 273 (2): 681-4

PMID: 9422716 · DOI:10.1074/jbc.273.2.681

Members of the DEG/ENaC protein family form ion channels with diverse functions. DEG/ENaC subunits associate as hetero- and homomultimers to generate channels; however the stoichiometry of these complexes is unknown. To determine the subunit stoichiometry of the human epithelial Na+ channel (hENaC), we expressed the three wild-type hENaC subunits (alpha, beta, and gamma) with subunits containing mutations that alter channel inhibition by methanethiosulfonates. The data indicate that hENaC contains three alpha, three beta, and three gamma subunits. Sucrose gradient sedimentation of alphahENaC translated in vitro, as well as alpha-, beta-, and gammahENaC coexpressed in cells, was consistent with complexes containing nine subunits. FaNaCh and BNC1, two related DEG/ENaC channels, produced complexes of similar mass. Our results suggest a novel nine-subunit stoichiometry for the DEG/ENaC family of ion channels.

MeSH Terms (9)

Animals COS Cells Dogs Epithelial Sodium Channels Molecular Weight Mutation Sodium Channels Sucrose Xenopus

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