alexa Clues to understanding cold sensation: thermodynamics and electrophysiological analysis of the cold receptor TRPM8.
Biomedical Sciences

Biomedical Sciences

Biology and Medicine

Author(s): Brauchi S, Orio P, Latorre R

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Abstract The cold and menthol receptor, TRPM8, also designated CMR1, is a member of the transient receptor potential (TRP) family of excitatory ion channels. TRPM8 is a channel activated by cold temperatures, voltage, and menthol. In this study, we characterize the cold- and voltage-induced activation of TRPM8 channel in an attempt to identify the temperature- and voltage-dependent components involved in channel activation. Under equilibrium conditions, decreasing temperature has two effects. (i) It shifts the normalized conductance vs. voltage curves toward the left, along the voltage axis. This effect indicates that the degree of order is higher when the channel is in the open configuration. (ii) It increases the maximum channel open probability, suggesting that temperature affects both voltage-dependent and -independent pathways. In the temperature range between 18 degrees C and 25 degrees C, large changes in enthalpy (DeltaH=-112 kcal/mol) and entropy (DeltaS=-384 cal/mol K) accompany the activation process. The Q10 calculated in the same temperature range is 24. This thermodynamic analysis strongly suggests that the process of opening involves large conformational changes of the channel-forming protein. Therefore, the highly temperature-dependent transition between open and closed configurations is possible because enthalpy and entropy are both large and compensate each other. Our data also demonstrate that temperature and voltage interact allosterically to enhance channel opening.
This article was published in Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A and referenced in Biology and Medicine

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