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KATP channels as molecular sensors of cellular metabolism

Nature volume 440, pages 470476 (23 March 2006) | Download Citation

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Abstract

In responding to cytoplasmic nucleotide levels, ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channel activity provides a unique link between cellular energetics and electrical excitability. Over the past ten years, a steady drumbeat of crystallographic and electrophysiological studies has led to detailed structural and kinetic models that define the molecular basis of channel activity. In parallel, the uncovering of disease-causing mutations of KATP has led to an explanation of the molecular basis of disease and, in turn, to a better understanding of the structural basis of channel function.

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Acknowledgements

I am grateful to R. Masia, B. Koster, D. Enkvetchakul, H. Kurata and T. Flagg for providing suggestions on the text, and to R. Masia, D. Enkvetchakul, F. Ashcroft and M. Sansom for providing molecular models of SUR1 NBFs and Kir6.2.

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  1. Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, Washington University School of Medicine, 660 South Euclid Avenue, St Louis, Missouri 63110, USA. cnichols@cellbio.wustl.edu

    • Colin G. Nichols

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The author declares no competing financial interests.

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