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Article
Nature 339, 597 - 603 (22 June 1989); doi:10.1038/339597a0

Structural parts involved in activation and inactivation of the sodium channel

Walter Stühmer*, Franco Conti, Harukazu Suzuki*, Xiaodong Wang*, Masaharu Noda§, Naoki Yahagi§, Hideo Kubo§ & Shosaku Numa§

* Max-Planck-lnstitut für biophysikalische Chemie, D-3400 Göttingen, FRG
Istituto di Cibernetica e Biofisica, CNR, 1-16146 Genova, Italy
§Departments of Medical Chemistry and Molecular Genetics, Kyoto University Faculty of Medicine, Kyoto 606, Japan
Permanent address: Departments of Medical Chemistry and Molecular Genetics, Kyoto University Faculty of Medicine, Kyoto 606, Japan

Structure–function relationships of the sodium channel expressed inXenopus oocytes have been investigated by the combined use of site–directed mutagenesis and patch-clamp recording. This study provides evidence that the positive charges in segment S4 are involved in the voltage–sensing mechanism for activation of the channel and that the region between repeats III and IV is important for its inactivation.

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