By electrophysiological methods, cultured Drosophila embryonic and larval central neurons have been widely used to study ion channels, neurotransmitter release and intracellular message regulation. Voltage-activated K(+) channels play a crucial role in repolarizing the membrane following action potentials, stabilizing membrane potentials and shaping firing patterns of cells. In this study, a mechanical vibration-isolation system was used to produce a sufficient number of acutely dissociated larval central neurons, of which the majority were type II neurons (2~5 microm in diameter). Using patch clamp technique, the whole-cell K(+) currents in type II neurons were characterized by containing a transient 4-AP-sensitive current (I(A)) and a more slowly inactivating, TEA-sensitive component (I(K)). According to their kinetic properties, five types of whole-cell K(+) currents were identified. Type A current exhibited primarily fast transient K(+) currents that activated and inactivated rapidly. The majority of the neurons, however, slowly inactivated K(+) currents with variable inactivation time course (type B current). Type C current, being present in a small number of the cells, was mainly composed of noninactivating components. Some of the neurons expressed both transient and slow inactivating components, but the slowly inactivating components could reach more than 50% of the peak current (type D current). Type E current showed distinct voltage-dependent activation properties, characterized by its bell-shaped activation curve. Type E current was inhibited by application of Ca(2+)-free solution or 0.1 mmol/L Cd(2+). Moreover, this novel current ran down much more rapidly than other types. These results indicate that different K(+) channels, which have different kinetic and pharmacological properties, underlie the whole-cell K(+) currents in type II neurons of Drosophila larval central nervous system.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Sheng li xue bao : [Acta physiologica Sinica]|
|State||Published - Oct 25 2002|
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