PhD, Stanford University, Chemistry (1969)
B.S., University of Michigan, Chemistry (1963)
I use computational chemistry to develop molecular theories of anesthesia and alcohol intoxication. I collaborate with three groups that use molecular biology to make site-directed mutations in ligand-gated ion channels. Molecular modeling of these channels is used to visualize the effect of mutations and to predict new mutations that will further refine their structure. I also use quantum mechanics calculations to determine the kinds of interactions that are likely to provide binding energy for anesthetic molecules at their sites of action.
Anesthetics are thought to mediate a portion of their activity via binding to and modulation of potassium channels. In particular, tandem pore potassium channels (K2P) are transmembrane ion channels whose current is modulated by the presence of general anesthetics and whose genetic absence has been shown to confer a level of anesthetic resistance. While the exact molecular structure of all K2P forms remains unknown, significant progress has been made toward understanding their structure and interactions with anesthetics via the methods of molecular modeling, coupled with the recently released higher resolution structures of homologous potassium channels to act as templates. Such models reveal the convergence of amino acid regions that are known to modulate anesthetic activity onto a common three- dimensional cavity that forms a putative anesthetic binding site. The model successfully predicts additional important residues that are also involved in the putative binding site as validated by the results of suggested experimental mutations. Such a model can now be used to further predict other amino acid residues that may be intimately involved in the target-based structure-activity relationships that are necessary for anesthetic binding.
View details for DOI 10.1021/cn500172e
View details for Web of Science ID 000346682000014
View details for PubMedID 25340635
Alcohol dependence is a complex condition with clear genetic factors. Some of the leading candidate genes code for subunits of the inhibitory GABAA and glycine receptors. These and related ion channels are also targets for the acute actions of alcohol, and there is considerable progress in understanding interactions of alcohol with these proteins at the molecular and even atomic levels. X-ray structures of open and closed states of ion channels combined with structural modeling and site-directed mutagenesis have elucidated direct actions of alcohol. Alcohol also alters channel function by translational and post-translational mechanisms, including phosphorylation and protein trafficking. Construction of mutant mice with either deletion of key proteins or introduction of alcohol-resistant channels has further linked specific proteins with discrete behavioral effects of alcohol. A combination of approaches, including genome wide association studies in humans, continues to advance the molecular basis of alcohol action on receptor structure and function.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.tips.2014.04.009
View details for Web of Science ID 000338979500003
View details for PubMedID 24865944
Alcohol use disorders (AUDs) have a staggering socioeconomic impact. Few therapeutic options are available, and they are largely inadequate. These shortcomings highlight the urgent need to develop effective medications to prevent and/or treat AUDs. A critical barrier is the lack of information regarding the molecular target(s) by which ethanol (EtOH) exerts its pharmacological activity. This review highlights findings implicating P2X4 receptors (P2X4Rs) as a target for the development of therapeutics to treat AUDs and discusses the use of ivermectin (IVM) as a potential clinical tool for treatment of AUDs. P2XRs are a family of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) activated by extracellular ATP. Of the P2XR subtypes, P2X4Rs are expressed the most abundantly in the CNS. Converging evidence suggests that P2X4Rs are involved in the development and progression of AUDs. First, in vitro studies report that pharmacologically relevant EtOH concentrations can negatively modulate ATP-activated currents. Second, P2X4Rs in the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system are thought to play a role in synaptic plasticity and are located ideally to modulate brain reward systems. Third, alcohol-preferring (P) rats have lower functional expression of the p2rx4 gene than alcohol-non-preferring (NP) rats suggesting an inverse relationship between alcohol intake and P2X4R expression. Similarly, whole brain p2rx4 expression has been shown to relate inversely to innate 24 h alcohol preference across 28 strains of rats. Fourth, mice lacking the p2rx4 gene drink more EtOH than wildtype controls. Fifth, IVM, a positive modulator of P2X4Rs, antagonizes EtOH-mediated inhibition of P2X4Rs in vitro and reduces EtOH intake and preference in vivo. These findings suggest that P2X4Rs contribute to EtOH intake. The present review summarizes recent findings focusing on the P2X4R as a molecular target of EtOH action, its role in EtOH drinking behavior and modulation of its activity by IVM as a potential therapy for AUDs.
View details for DOI 10.3389/fnins.2014.00176
View details for Web of Science ID 000346493200001
View details for PubMedID 25009459
Alcohols and other anesthetic agents dramatically alter neurologic function in a wide range of organisms, yet their molecular sites of action remain poorly characterized. Pentameric ligand-gated ion channels, long implicated in important direct effects of alcohol and anesthetic binding, have recently been illuminated in renewed detail thanks to the determination of atomic-resolution structures of several family members from lower organisms. These structures provide valuable models for understanding and developing anesthetic agents and for allosteric modulation in general. This review surveys progress in this field from function to structure and back again, outlining early evidence for relevant modulation of pentameric ligand-gated ion channels and the development of early structural models for ion channel function and modulation. We highlight insights and challenges provided by recent crystal structures and resulting simulations, as well as opportunities for translation of these newly detailed models back to behavior and therapy.
View details for DOI 10.1124/pr.113.007468
View details for Web of Science ID 000332035200001
View details for PubMedID 24515646
The molecular mechanism(s) of action of anesthetic, and especially, intoxicating doses of alcohol (ethanol [EtOH]) have been of interest even before the advent of the Research Society on Alcoholism. Recent physiological, genetic, and biochemical studies have pin-pointed molecular targets for anesthetics and EtOH in the brain as ligand-gated ion channel (LGIC) membrane proteins, especially the pentameric (5 subunit) Cys-loop superfamily of neurotransmitter receptors including nicotinic acetylcholine (nAChRs), GABAA (GABAA Rs), and glycine receptors (GlyRs). The ability to demonstrate molecular and structural elements of these proteins critical for the behavioral effects of these drugs on animals and humans provides convincing evidence for their role in the drugs' actions. Amino acid residues necessary for pharmacologically relevant allosteric modulation of LGIC function by anesthetics and EtOH have been identified in these channel proteins. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed potential allosteric modulatory sites in both the trans-membrane domain (TMD) and extracellular domain (ECD). Potential sites of action and binding have been deduced from homology modeling of other LGICs with structures known from crystallography and cryo-electron microscopy studies. Direct information about ligand binding in the TMD has been obtained by photoaffinity labeling, especially in GABAA Rs. Recent structural information from crystallized procaryotic (ELIC and GLIC) and eukaryotic (GluCl) LGICs allows refinement of the structural models including evaluation of possible sites of EtOH action.
View details for DOI 10.1111/acer.12283
View details for Web of Science ID 000332758200001
View details for PubMedID 24164436
Pulmonary endothelial injury triggers a reparative program, which in susceptible individuals is characterized by neointima formation, vascular narrowing, and the development of pulmonary arterial hypertension. The neointimal cells in human pathological plexiform lesions frequently coexpress smooth muscle α-actin and the endothelial von Willebrand antigen, creating a question about their cellular lineage of origin.Experimental pulmonary hypertension with neointima formation develops in C57Bl/6 mice subjected to left pneumonectomy followed 1 week later by jugular vein injection of monocrotaline pyrrole (20 μg/μL and 1 μL/g; group P/MCTP). Compared with the group vehicle, by day 35, group P/MCTP developed higher right ventricular systolic pressure (54±5 versus 25±2 mm Hg; P<0.01) and right ventricular hypertrophy (0.58±0.16 versus 0.26±0.05; P<0.01). Transgenic vascular endothelial-cadherin Cre recombinase or Tie-2 Cre mice were intercrossed with mTomato/mGreen fluorescent protein double-fluorescent Cre reporter mice to achieve endothelial genetic lineage marking with membrane-targeted green fluorescent protein. In control mice, few endothelial lineage-marked cells lining the lumen of small pulmonary arteries demonstrate expression of smooth muscle α-actin. Concurrent with the development of pulmonary hypertension, endothelial lineage-marked cells are prominent in the neointima and exhibit expression of smooth muscle α-actin and smooth muscle myosin heavy chain. Human pulmonary arterial hypertension neointimal lesions contain cells that coexpress endothelial CD31 or von Willebrand antigen and smooth muscle α-actin.Neointimal cells in pulmonary hypertension include contributions from the endothelial genetic lineage with induced expression of smooth muscle α-actin and smooth muscle myosin heavy chain.
View details for DOI 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.113.003734
View details for Web of Science ID 000331098700012
View details for PubMedID 24201301
Alcohols and inhaled anesthetics modulate GABA(A) receptor (GABA(A)R) function via putative binding sites within the transmembrane regions. The relative position of the amino acids lining these sites could be either inter- or intra-subunit. We introduced cysteines in relevant TM locations and tested the proximity of cysteine pairs using oxidizing and reducing agents to induce or break disulfide bridges between cysteines, and thus change GABA-mediated currents in wild-type and mutant α1β2γ2 GABA(A)Rs expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. We tested for: (i) inter-subunit cross-linking: a cysteine located in α1TM1 [either α1(Q229C) or α1(L232C)] was paired with a cysteine in different positions of β2TM2 and TM3; (ii) intra-subunit cross-linking: a cysteine located either in β2TM1 [β2(T225C)] or in TM2 [β2(N265C)] was paired with a cysteine in different locations along β2TM3. Three inter-subunit cysteine pairs and four intra-subunits cross-linked. In three intra-subunit cysteine combinations, the alcohol effect was reduced by oxidizing agents, suggesting intra-subunit alcohol binding. We conclude that the structure of the alcohol binding site changes during activation and that potentiation or inhibition by binding at inter- or intra-subunit sites is determined by the specific receptor and ligand.
View details for DOI 10.1111/jnc.12476
View details for Web of Science ID 000329877700004
View details for PubMedID 24117469
ATP-gated purinergic P2X4 receptors (P2X4Rs) are the most alcohol-sensitive P2XR subtype. We recently reported that ivermectin (IVM), an antiparasitic used in animals and humans, antagonized ethanol inhibition of P2X4Rs. Furthermore, IVM reduced ethanol intake in mice. The first molecular model of the rat P2X4R, built onto the X-ray crystal structure of zebrafish P2X4R, revealed an action pocket for both ethanol and IVM formed by Asp331, Met336 in TM2 and Trp46, and Trp50 in TM1 segments. The role of Asp331 and Met336 was experimentally confirmed. The present study tested the hypothesis that Trp46 plays a role in ethanol and IVM modulation of P2X4Rs. Trp46 was mutated to residues with different physicochemical properties and the resultant mutants tested for ethanol and IVM responses using Xenopus oocyte expression system and two-electrode voltage clamp. Nonaromatic substitutions at position 46 reduced ethanol inhibition at higher concentrations and switched IVM potentiation to inhibition. Simultaneous substitution of alanine at positions Trp46 and Met336 also resulted in similar changes in ethanol and IVM responses. Furthermore, a new molecular model based on the open pore conformation of zebrafish P2X4R suggested a role for Tyr42 that was further supported experimentally. Our previous and current findings, combined with our preliminary evidence of increased ethanol consumption in P2X4R knockout mice, suggest that the ethanol and IVM action pocket in P2X4Rs formed by positions 42, 46, 331, and 336 presents a potential target for medication development for alcohol use disorders.
View details for DOI 10.1007/s11302-013-9373-4
View details for Web of Science ID 000328330900008
View details for PubMedID 23817978
BACKGROUND:: Anesthetics mediate portions of their activity via modulation of the γ-aminobutyric acid receptor (GABAaR). Although its molecular structure remains unknown, significant progress has been made toward understanding its interactions with anesthetics via molecular modeling. METHODS:: The structure of the torpedo acetylcholine receptor (nAChRα), the structures of the α4 and β2 subunits of the human nAChR, the structures of the eukaryotic glutamate-gated chloride channel (GluCl), and the prokaryotic pH-sensing channels, from Gloeobacter violaceus and Erwinia chrysanthemi, were aligned with the SAlign and 3DMA algorithms. A multiple sequence alignment from these structures and those of the GABAaR was performed with ClustalW. The Modeler and Rosetta algorithms independently created three-dimensional constructs of the GABAaR from the GluCl template. The CDocker algorithm docked a congeneric series of propofol derivatives into the binding pocket and scored calculated binding affinities for correlation with known GABAaR potentiation EC50s. RESULTS:: Multiple structure alignments of templates revealed a clear consensus of residue locations relevant to anesthetic effects except for torpedo nAChR. Within the GABAaR models generated from GluCl, the residues notable for modulating anesthetic action within transmembrane segments 1, 2, and 3 converged on the intersubunit interface between α and β subunits. Docking scores of a propofol derivative series into this binding site showed strong linear correlation with GABAaR potentiation EC50. CONCLUSION:: Consensus structural alignment based on homologous templates revealed an intersubunit anesthetic binding cavity within the transmembrane domain of the GABAaR, which showed a correlation of ligand docking scores with experimentally measured GABAaR potentiation.
View details for DOI 10.1097/ALN.0b013e31829e47e3
View details for Web of Science ID 000329797900015
Improving our understanding of the mechanisms and effects of anesthetics is a critically important part of neuroscience. The currently dominant theory is that anesthetics and similar molecules act by binding to Cys-loop receptors in the postsynaptic terminal of nerve cells and potentiate or inhibit their function. Although structures for some of the most important mammalian channels have still not been determined, a number of important results have been derived from work on homologous cationic channels in bacteria. However, partly due to the lack of a nervous system in bacteria, there are a number of questions about how these results relate to higher organisms. The recent determination of a structure of the eukaryotic chloride channel, GluCl, is an important step toward accurate modeling of mammalian channels, because it is more similar in function to human Cys-loop receptors such as GABAAR or GlyR. One potential issue with using GluCl to model other receptors is the presence of the large ligand ivermectin (IVM) positioned between all five subunits. Here, we have performed a series of microsecond molecular simulations to study how the dynamics and structure of GluCl change in the presence versus absence of IVM. When the ligand is removed, subunits move at least 2 Å closer to each other compared to simulations with IVM bound. In addition, the pore radius shrinks to 1.2 Å, all of which appears to support a model where IVM binding between subunits stabilizes an open state, and that the relaxed nonIVM conformations might be suitable for modeling other channels. Interestingly, the presence of IVM also has an effect on the structure of the important loop C located at the neurotransmitter-binding pocket, which might help shed light on its partial agonist behavior.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.bpj.2013.06.037
View details for Web of Science ID 000323141100014
View details for PubMedID 23931312
Pentameric ligand-gated ion channels (pLGICs) are similar in structure but either inhibited or potentiated by alcohols and anesthetics. This dual modulation has previously not been understood, but the determination of X-ray structures of prokaryotic GLIC provides an ideal model system. Here, we show that a single-site mutation at the F14' site in the GLIC transmembrane domain turns desflurane and chloroform from inhibitors to potentiators, and that this is explained by competing allosteric sites. The F14'A mutation opens an intersubunit site lined by N239 (15'), I240 (16'), and Y263. Free energy calculations confirm this site is the preferred binding location for desflurane and chloroform in GLIC F14'A. In contrast, both anesthetics prefer an intrasubunit site in wild-type GLIC. Modulation is therefore the net effect of competitive binding between the intersubunit potentiating site and an intrasubunit inhibitory site. This provides direct evidence for a dual-site model of allosteric regulation of pLGICs.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.str.2013.06.018
View details for Web of Science ID 000322927900007
View details for PubMedID 23891290
Ethanol is a widely used drug, yet an understanding of its sites and mechanisms of action remains incomplete. Among the protein targets of ethanol are glycine receptors (GlyRs), which are potentiated by millimolar concentrations of ethanol. In addition, zinc ions also modulate GlyR function, and recent evidence suggests that physiologic concentrations of zinc enhance ethanol potentiation of GlyRs. Here, we first built a homology model of a zinc-bound GlyR using the D80 position as a coordination site for a zinc ion. Next, we investigated in vitro the effects of zinc on ethanol action at recombinant wild-type (WT) and mutant α1 GlyRs containing the D80A substitution, which eliminates zinc potentiation. At D80A GlyRs, the effects of 50 and 200 mM ethanol were reduced as compared with WT receptors. Also, in contrast to what was seen with WT GlyRs, neither adding nor chelating zinc changed the magnitude of ethanol enhancement of mutant D80A receptors. Next, we evaluated the in vivo effects of the D80A substitution by using heterozygous Glra1(D80A) knock-in (KI) mice. The KI mice showed decreased ethanol consumption and preference, and they displayed increased startle responses compared with their WT littermates. Other behavioral tests, including ethanol-induced motor incoordination and strychnine-induced convulsions, revealed no differences between the KI and WT mice. Together, our findings indicate that zinc is critical in determining the effects of ethanol at GlyRs and suggest that zinc binding at the D80 position may be important for mediating some of the behavioral effects of ethanol action at GlyRs.
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.112.197707
View details for Web of Science ID 000313745900018
View details for PubMedID 23230213
Cys-loop receptors constitute a superfamily of pentameric ligand-gated ion channels (pLGICs), including receptors for acetylcholine, serotonin, glycine and ?-aminobutyric acid. Several bacterial homologues have been identified that are excellent models for understanding allosteric binding of alcohols and anesthetics in human Cys-loop receptors. Recently, we showed that a single point mutation on a prokaryotic homologue (GLIC) could transform it from a channel weakly potentiated by ethanol into a highly ethanol-sensitive channel. Here, we have employed molecular simulations to study ethanol binding to GLIC, and to elucidate the role of the ethanol-enhancing mutation in GLIC modulation. By performing 1-µs simulations with and without ethanol on wild-type and mutated GLIC, we observed spontaneous binding in both intra-subunit and inter-subunit transmembrane cavities. In contrast to the glycine receptor GlyR, in which we previously observed ethanol binding primarily in an inter-subunit cavity, ethanol primarily occupied an intra-subunit cavity in wild-type GLIC. However, the highly ethanol-sensitive GLIC mutation significantly enhanced ethanol binding in the inter-subunit cavity. These results demonstrate dramatic effects of the F(14')A mutation on the distribution of ligands, and are consistent with a two-site model of pLGIC inhibition and potentiation.
View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1002710
View details for Web of Science ID 000310568800011
View details for PubMedID 23055913
The accompanying articles in this issue of the journal's special collection describe attempts to improve on the dynamics of distribution and reduce side effects of analogs of etomidate and benzodiazepines. Both classes of drugs have their principal sites of action on ?-aminobutyric acid type A receptors, although at very different binding sites and by different mechanisms of action. Herein, we review the structure of ?-aminobutyric acid type A receptors and describe the location of the 2 likely binding sites. In addition, we describe how these drugs can interact with the nervous system at a systems level. We leave it to other reviewers to discuss whether these new drugs offer true clinical improvements.
View details for DOI 10.1213/ANE.0b013e31824a0b3c
View details for Web of Science ID 000306769500012
View details for PubMedID 22344244
Although general anesthetics have been provided effectively for many years, their exact molecular underpinnings remain relatively unknown. In this article, we discuss the recent findings associated with resistance to anesthetic effects as a way of shedding light on these mechanisms.The original theories of anesthetic action based upon their effects on cellular membranes have given way to specific theories concerning direct effects on ion channel proteins. These molecular targets are intimately involved in the conduct of neuronal signaling within the central nervous system and are thought to be essential in the modulation of conscious states. It is the lack of a thorough understanding of unperturbed consciousness that fosters great difficulty in understanding how anesthetics alter this conscious state. However, one very fruitful line of analysis in the quest for such answers lies in the examination of both in-vitro and in-vivo ion channel systems that seem to maintain variable levels of resistance to anesthetics.Information about the possible targets and molecular nature of anesthetic action is being derived from studies of anesthetic resistance in ? aminobutyric acid receptors, tandem pore potassium channels, and an apparently wide variety of protein systems within the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans.
View details for DOI 10.1097/ACO.0b013e328354fda8
View details for Web of Science ID 000306273900002
View details for PubMedID 22614247
Recent studies highlighted the importance of loop 2 of ?1 glycine receptors (GlyRs) in the propagation of ligand-binding energy to the channel gate. Mutations that changed polarity at position 52 in the ? hairpin of loop 2 significantly affected sensitivity to ethanol. The present study extends the investigation to charged residues. We found that substituting alanine with the negative glutamate at position 52 (A52E) significantly left-shifted the glycine concentration response curve and increased sensitivity to ethanol, whereas the negative aspartate substitution (A52D) significantly right-shifted the glycine EC?? but did not affect ethanol sensitivity. It is noteworthy that the uncharged glutamine at position 52 (A52Q) caused only a small right shift of the glycine EC?? while increasing ethanol sensitivity as much as A52E. In contrast, the shorter uncharged asparagine (A52N) caused the greatest right shift of glycine EC?? and reduced ethanol sensitivity to half of wild type. Collectively, these findings suggest that charge interactions determined by the specific geometry of the amino acid at position 52 (e.g., the 1-? chain length difference between aspartate and glutamate) play differential roles in receptor sensitivity to agonist and ethanol. We interpret these results in terms of a new homology model of GlyR based on a prokaryotic ion channel and propose that these mutations form salt bridges to residues across the ? hairpin (A52E-R59 and A52N-D57). We hypothesize that these electrostatic interactions distort loop 2, thereby changing agonist activation and ethanol modulation. This knowledge will help to define the key physical-chemical parameters that cause the actions of ethanol in GlyRs.
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.111.190942
View details for Web of Science ID 000302903500024
View details for PubMedID 22357974
Ionotropic GABA(A) receptors (GABA(A)Rs), which mediate inhibitory neurotransmission in the central nervous system, are implicated in the behavioral effects of alcohol and alcoholism. Site-directed mutagenesis studies support the presence of discrete molecular sites involved in alcohol enhancement and, more recently, inhibition of GABA(A)Rs. We used Xenopus laevis oocytes to investigate the 6' position in the second transmembrane region of GABA(A)Rs as a site influencing alcohol inhibition. We asked whether modification of the 6' position by substitution with larger residues or methanethiol labeling [using methyl methanethiosulfonate (MMTS)] of a substituted cysteine, reduced GABA action and/or blocked further inhibition by alcohols. Labeling of the 6' position in either ?2 or ?2 subunits reduced responses to GABA. In addition, methanol and ethanol potentiation increased after MMTS labeling or substitution with tryptophan or methionine, consistent with elimination of an inhibitory site for these alcohols. Specific alcohols, but not the anesthetic etomidate, competed with MMTS labeling at the 6' position. We verified a role for the 6' position in previously tested ?2?2 as well as more physiologically relevant ?2?2?2s GABA(A)Rs. Finally, we built a novel molecular model based on the invertebrate glutamate-gated chloride channel receptor, a GABA(A)R homolog, revealing that the 6' position residue faces the channel pore, and modification of this residue alters volume and polarity of the pore-facing cavity in this region. These results indicate that the 6' positions in both ?2 and ?2 GABA(A)R subunits mediate inhibition by short-chain alcohols, which is consistent with the presence of multiple counteracting sites of action for alcohols on ligand-gated ion channels.
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.111.188037
View details for Web of Science ID 000299323600022
View details for PubMedID 22072732
Glycine receptors (GlyRs) are inhibitory ligand-gated ion channels. Ethanol potentiates glycine activation of the GlyR, and putative binding sites for alcohol are located in the transmembrane (TM) domains between and within subunits. To alter alcohol sensitivity of GlyR, we introduced two mutations in the GlyR ?1 subunit, M287L (TM3) and Q266I (TM2). After expression in Xenopus laevis oocytes, both mutants showed a reduction in glycine sensitivity and glycine-induced maximal currents. Activation by taurine, another endogenous agonist, was almost abolished in the M287L GlyR. The ethanol potentiation of glycine currents was reduced in the M287L GlyR and eliminated in Q266I. Physiological levels of zinc (100 nM) potentiate glycine responses in wild-type GlyR and also enhance the ethanol potentiation of glycine responses. Although zinc potentiation of glycine responses was unchanged in both mutants, zinc enhancement of ethanol potentiation of glycine responses was absent in M287L GlyRs. The Q266I mutation decreased conductance but increased mean open time (effects not seen in M287L). Two lines of knockin mice bearing these mutations were developed. Survival of homozygous knockin mice was impaired, probably as a consequence of impaired glycinergic transmission. Glycine showed a decreased capacity for displacing strychnine binding in heterozygous knockin mice. Electrophysiology in isolated neurons of brain stem showed decreased glycine-mediated currents and decreased ethanol potentiation in homozygous knockin mice. Molecular models of the wild-type and mutant GlyRs show a smaller water-filled cavity within the TM domains of the Q266I ?1 subunit. The behavioral characterization of these knockin mice is presented in a companion article (J Pharmacol Exp Ther 340:317-329, 2012).
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.111.185116
View details for Web of Science ID 000299323600009
View details for PubMedID 22037201
Defining the sites of action of ethanol on brain proteins is a major prerequisite to understanding the molecular pharmacology of this drug. The main barrier to reaching an atomic-level understanding of alcohol action is the low potency of alcohols, ethanol in particular, which is a reflection of transient, low-affinity interactions with their targets. These mechanisms are difficult or impossible to study with traditional techniques such as radioligand binding or spectroscopy. However, there has been considerable recent progress in combining X-ray crystallography, structural modeling, and site-directed mutagenesis to define the sites and mechanisms of action of ethanol and related alcohols on key brain proteins. We review such insights for several diverse classes of proteins including inwardly rectifying potassium, transient receptor potential, and neurotransmitter-gated ion channels, as well as protein kinase C epsilon. Some common themes are beginning to emerge from these proteins, including hydrogen bonding of the hydroxyl group and van der Waals interactions of the methylene groups of ethanol with specific amino acid residues. The resulting binding energy is proposed to facilitate or stabilize low-energy state transitions in the bound proteins, allowing ethanol to act as a "molecular lubricant" for protein function. We discuss evidence for characteristic, discrete alcohol-binding sites on protein targets, as well as evidence that binding to some proteins is better characterized by an interaction region that can accommodate multiple molecules of ethanol.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2011.01502.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000294260100002
View details for PubMedID 21676006
Despite its long history of use and abuse in human culture, the molecular basis for alcohol action in the brain is poorly understood. The recent determination of the atomic-scale structure of GLIC, a prokaryotic member of the pentameric ligand-gated ion channel (pLGIC) family, provides a unique opportunity to characterize the structural basis for modulation of these channels, many of which are alcohol targets in brain. We observed that GLIC recapitulates bimodal modulation by n-alcohols, similar to some eukaryotic pLGICs: methanol and ethanol weakly potentiated proton-activated currents in GLIC, whereas n-alcohols larger than ethanol inhibited them. Mapping of residues important to alcohol modulation of ionotropic receptors for glycine, ?-aminobutyric acid, and acetylcholine onto GLIC revealed their proximity to transmembrane cavities that may accommodate one or more alcohol molecules. Site-directed mutations in the pore-lining M2 helix allowed the identification of four residues that influence alcohol potentiation, with the direction of their effects reflecting ?-helical structure. At one of the potentiation-enhancing residues, decreased side chain volume converted GLIC into a highly ethanol-sensitive channel, comparable to its eukaryotic relatives. Covalent labeling of M2 positions with an alcohol analog, a methanethiosulfonate reagent, further implicated residues at the extracellular end of the helix in alcohol binding. Molecular dynamics simulations elucidated the structural consequences of a potentiation-enhancing mutation and suggested a structural mechanism for alcohol potentiation via interaction with a transmembrane cavity previously termed the "linking tunnel." These results provide a unique structural model for independent potentiating and inhibitory interactions of n-alcohols with a pLGIC family member.
View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.1104480108
View details for Web of Science ID 000292876900084
View details for PubMedID 21730162
Cys-loop receptors constitute a superfamily of ion channels gated by ligands such as acetylcholine, serotonin, glycine, and ?-aminobutyric acid. All of these receptors are thought to share structural characteristics, but due to high sequence variation and limited structure availability, our knowledge about allosteric binding sites is still limited. These sites are frequent targets of anesthetic and alcohol molecules, and are of high pharmacological importance. We used molecular simulations to study ethanol binding and equilibrium exchange for the homomeric ?1 glycine receptor (GlyR?1), modeled on the structure of the Gloeobacter violaceus pentameric ligand-gated channel. Ethanol has a well-known potentiating effect and can be used in high concentrations. By performing two microsecond-scale simulations of GlyR with/without ethanol, we were able to observe spontaneous binding in cavities and equilibrium ligand exchange. Of interest, it appears that there are ethanol-binding sites both between and within the GlyR transmembrane subunits, with the intersubunit site having the highest occupancy and slowest exchange (?200 ns). This model site involves several residues that were previously identified via mutations as being crucial for potentiation. Finally, ethanol appears to stabilize the GlyR model built on a presumably open form of the ligand-gated channel. This stabilization could help explain the effects of allosteric ligand binding in Cys-loop receptors.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.bpj.2011.02.032
View details for Web of Science ID 000289494200009
View details for PubMedID 21463577
Alcohols and inhaled anesthetics enhance the function of GABA(A) receptors containing ?, ?, and ? subunits. Molecular analysis has focused on the role of the ? subunits; however, there is evidence that the ? subunits may also be important. The goal of our study was to determine whether Asn265, which is homologous to the site implicated in the ? subunit (Ser270), contributes to an alcohol and volatile anesthetic binding site in the GABA(A) receptor ?(2) subunit. We substituted cysteine for Asn265 and exposed the mutant to the sulfhydryl-specific reagent octyl methanethiosulfonate (OMTS). We used two-electrode voltage-clamp electrophysiology in Xenopus laevis oocytes and found that, after OMTS application, GABA-induced currents were irreversibly potentiated in mutant ?(1)?(2)(N265C)?(2S) receptors [but not ?(1)?(2)(I264C)?(2S)], presumably because of the covalent linking of octanethiol to the thiol group in the substituted cysteine. It is noteworthy that this effect was blocked when OMTS was applied in the presence of octanol. We found that potentiation by butanol, octanol, or isoflurane in the N265C mutant was nearly abolished after the application of OMTS, suggesting that an alcohol and volatile anesthetic binding site at position 265 of the ?(2) subunit was irreversibly occupied by octanethiol and consequently prevented butanol or isoflurane from binding and producing their effects. OMTS did not affect modulation or direct activation by pentobarbital, but there was a partial reduction of allosteric modulation by flunitrazepam and alphaxalone in mutant ?(1)?(2)(N265C)?(2S) receptors after OMTS was applied. Our findings provide evidence that Asn265 may contribute to an alcohol and anesthetic binding site.
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.110.170472
View details for Web of Science ID 000284308800009
View details for PubMedID 20826568
Ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) significantly modulate anesthetic effects. Their exact molecular structure remains unknown. This has led to ambiguity regarding the proper amino acid alignment within their 3D structure and, in turn, the location of any anesthetic binding sites. Current controversies suggest that such a site could be located in either an intra- or intersubunit locale within the transmembrane domain of the protein. Here, we built a model of the glycine alpha one receptor (GlyRa1) based on the open-state structures of two new high-resolution ion channel templates from the prokaryote, Gloebacter violaceus (GLIC). Sequence scoring suggests reasonable homology between GlyRa1 and GLIC. Three of the residues notable for modulating anesthetic action are on transmembrane segments 1-3 (TM1-3): (ILE229, SER 267, and ALA 288). They line an intersubunit interface, in contrast to previous models. However, residues from the fourth transmembrane domain (TM4) that are known to modulate a variety of anesthetic effects are quite distant from this putative anesthetic binding site. While this model can account for a large proportion of the physicochemical data regarding such proteins, it cannot readily account for the alterations on anesthetic effects that are due to mutations within TM4.
View details for DOI 10.1021/ci100266e
View details for Web of Science ID 000285559900017
View details for PubMedID 21117677
ATP-gated purinergic P2X4 receptors (P2X4Rs) are expressed in the central nervous system and are sensitive to ethanol at intoxicating concentrations. P2XRs are trimeric; each subunit consists of two transmembrane (TM) alpha-helical segments, a large extracellular domain, and intracellular amino and carboxyl terminals. Recent work indicates that position 336 (Met336) in the TM2 segment is critical for ethanol modulation of P2X4Rs. The anthelmintic medication ivermectin (IVM) positively modulates P2X4Rs and is believed to act in the same region as ethanol. The present study tested the hypothesis that IVM can antagonize ethanol action. We investigated IVM and ethanol effects in wild-type and mutant P2X4Rs expressed in Xenopus oocytes by using a two-electrode voltage clamp. IVM antagonized ethanol-induced inhibition of P2X4Rs in a concentration-dependent manner. The size and charge of substitutions at position 336 affected P2X4R sensitivity to both ethanol and IVM. The first molecular model of the rat P2X4R, built onto the X-ray crystal structure of zebrafish P2X4R, revealed a pocket formed by Asp331, Met336, Trp46, and Trp50 that may play a role in the actions of ethanol and IVM. These findings provide the first evidence for IVM antagonism of ethanol effects in P2X4Rs and suggest that the antagonism results from the ability of IVM to interfere with ethanol action on the putative pocket at or near position 336. Taken with the building evidence supporting a role for P2X4Rs in ethanol intake, the present findings suggest that the newly identified alcohol pocket is a potential site for development of medication for alcohol use disorders.
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.110.167908
View details for Web of Science ID 000281114900005
View details for PubMedID 20543096
We have previously used molecular modeling and normal-mode analyses combined with experimental data to visualize a plausible model of a transmembrane ligand-gated ion channel. We also postulated how the gating motion of the channel may be affected by the presence of various ligands, especially anesthetics. As is typical for normal-mode analyses, those studies were performed in vacuo to reduce the computational complexity of the problem. While such calculations constitute an efficient way to model the large scale structural flexibility of transmembrane proteins, they can be criticized for neglecting the effects of an explicit phospholipid bilayer or hydrated environment. Here, we show the successful calculation of normal-mode motions for our model of a glycine ?-1 receptor, now suspended in a fully hydrated lipid bilayer. Despite the almost uniform atomic density, the introduction of water and lipid does not grossly distort the overall gating motion. Normal-mode analysis revealed that even a fully immersed glycine ?-1 receptor continues to demonstrate an iris-like channel gating motion as a low-frequency, high-amplitude natural harmonic vibration consistent with channel gating. Furthermore, the introduction of periodic boundary conditions allows the examination of simultaneous harmonic vibrations of lipid in synchrony with the protein gating motions that are compatible with reasonable lipid bilayer perturbations. While these perturbations tend to influence the overall protein motion, this work provides continued support for the iris-like motion model that characterizes gating within the family of ligand-gated ion channels.
View details for DOI 10.1021/cn100026t
View details for Web of Science ID 000281052400005
View details for PubMedID 22816018
Glycine receptors (GlyRs) are recognized as the primary mediators of neuronal inhibition in the spinal cord, brain stem and higher brain regions known to be sensitive to ethanol. Building evidence supports the notion that ethanol acting on GlyRs causes at least a subset of its behavioral effects and may be involved in modulating ethanol intake. For over two decades, GlyRs have been studied at the molecular level as targets for ethanol action. Despite the advances in understanding the effects of ethanol in vivo and in vitro, the precise molecular sites and mechanisms of action for ethanol in ligand-gated ion channels in general, and in GlyRs specifically, are just now starting to become understood. The present review focuses on advances in our knowledge produced by using molecular biology, pressure antagonism, electrophysiology and molecular modeling strategies over the last two decades to probe, identify and model the initial molecular sites and mechanisms of ethanol action in GlyRs. The molecular targets on the GlyR are covered on a global perspective, which includes the intracellular, transmembrane and extracellular domains. The latter has received increasing attention in recent years. Recent molecular models of the sites of ethanol action in GlyRs and their implications to our understanding of possible mechanism of ethanol action and novel targets for drug development in GlyRs are discussed.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.pharmthera.2010.03.003
View details for Web of Science ID 000279551600005
View details for PubMedID 20399807
Proper regulation of neurotransmission requires that ligand-activated ion channels remain closed until agonist binds. How channels then open remains poorly understood. Glycine receptor (GlyR) gating is initiated by agonist binding at interfaces between adjacent subunits in the extracellular domain. Aspartate-97, located at the alpha1 GlyR interface, is a conserved residue in the cys-loop receptor superfamily. The mutation of D97 to arginine (D97R) causes spontaneous channel opening, with open and closed dwell times similar to those of maximally activated WT GlyR. Using a model of the N-terminal domain of the alpha1 GlyR, we hypothesized that an arginine-119 residue was forming intersubunit electrostatic bonds with D97. The D97R/R119E charge reversal restored this interaction, stabilizing channels in their closed states. Cysteine substitution shows that this link occurs between adjacent subunits. This intersubunit electrostatic interaction among GlyR subunits thus contributes to the stabilization of the closed channel state, and its disruption represents a critical step in GlyR activation.
View details for DOI 10.1073/pnas.1001845107
View details for Web of Science ID 000277088700069
View details for PubMedID 20385800
Glycine receptor function mediates most inhibitory neurotransmission in the brainstem and spinal cord and is enhanced by alcohols, volatile anesthetics, inhaled drugs of abuse, and endogenous compounds including zinc. Because zinc exists ubiquitously throughout the brain, investigations of its effects on the enhancement of GlyR function by alcohols and anesthetics are important to understanding the effects of these agents in vivo. In the present study, the effects of zinc plus ethanol, pentanol, or isoflurane were tested on homomeric alpha1 glycine receptors to determine if concurrent applications of physiological concentrations of zinc with each of these modulators changed the magnitude of their effects. Homomeric alpha1 glycine receptors were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes, and the two-electrode voltage-clamp technique was used to measure glycine-mediated currents in the presence of combinations of zinc with ethanol, pentanol or isoflurane. The combined effects of zinc plus ethanol were greater than the sum of the effects produced by either compound alone. However, this was not seen when zinc was combined with either pentanol or isoflurane. Chelation of zinc by tricine decreased the effects of sub-maximal, but not maximal, concentrations of glycine, and diminished the magnitude of ethanol enhancement observed. These findings suggest a zinc/ethanol interaction at the alpha1 GlyR that results in the enhancement of the effects of ethanol action on GlyR function.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2009.11.001
View details for Web of Science ID 000274722300014
View details for PubMedID 19913039
Glycine receptors (GlyRs) are pentameric ligand-gated ion channels that mediate inhibitory neurotransmission in the brain and spinal cord and are targets of alcohols and anesthetics. The transmembrane (TM) domain of GlyR subunits is composed of four ?-helical segments (TM1-4), but there are conflicting data about the orientation of TM3 and TM4 and, therefore, also the proximity of residues (e.g., A288) that are important for alcohol and anesthetic effects. In the present study, we investigated the proximity of A288 in TM3 to residues in TM4 from M404 to K411. We generated eight double mutant GlyRs (A288C/M404C, A288C/F405C, A288C/Y406C, A288C/W407C, A288C/I408C, A288C/I409C, A288C/Y410C, and A288C/K411C), as well as the corresponding single mutants, and expressed them in Xenopus laevis oocytes. To measure glycine responses, we used two-electrode voltage clamp electrophysiology. We built homology models of the GlyR using structures of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and a prokaryotic ion channel (Gloeobacter violaceus, GLIC) as templates, and asked which model best fit our experimental data. Application of the cross-linking reagent HgCl(2) in the closed state produced a leftward shift in the glycine concentration-response curves of the A288C/W407C and A288C/Y410C mutants, suggesting they are able to form cross-links. In addition, when HgCl(2) was coapplied with glycine, responses were changed in the A288C/Y406C, A288C/I409C, and A288C/Y410C double mutants, suggesting that agonist-induced rotation of TM4 allows A288C/Y406C and A288C/I409C to cross-link. These results are consistent with a model of GlyR, based on nAChR, in which A288, Y406, W407, I409, and Y410 face into a four-helical bundle.
View details for PubMedID 21326622
The present study tests the hypothesis that the structure of extracellular domain Loop 2 can markedly affect ethanol sensitivity in glycine receptors (GlyRs) and gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors (GABA(A)Rs). To test this, we mutated Loop 2 in the alpha1 subunit of GlyRs and in the gamma subunit of alpha1beta2gamma2GABA(A)Rs and measured the sensitivity of wild type and mutant receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes to agonist, ethanol, and other agents using two-electrode voltage clamp. Replacing Loop 2 of alpha1GlyR subunits with Loop 2 from the deltaGABA(A)R (deltaL2), but not the gammaGABA(A)R subunit, reduced ethanol threshold and increased the degree of ethanol potentiation without altering general receptor function. Similarly, replacing Loop 2 of the gamma subunit of GABA(A)Rs with deltaL2 shifted the ethanol threshold from 50 mm in WT to 1 mm in the GABA(A) gamma-deltaL2 mutant. These findings indicate that the structure of Loop 2 can profoundly affect ethanol sensitivity in GlyRs and GABA(A)Rs. The deltaL2 mutations did not affect GlyR or GABA(A)R sensitivity, respectively, to Zn(2+) or diazepam, which suggests that these deltaL2-induced changes in ethanol sensitivity do not extend to all allosteric modulators and may be specific for ethanol or ethanol-like agents. To explore molecular mechanisms underlying these results, we threaded the WT and deltaL2 GlyR sequences onto the x-ray structure of the bacterial Gloeobacter violaceus pentameric ligand-gated ion channel homologue (GLIC). In addition to being the first GlyR model threaded on GLIC, the juxtaposition of the two structures led to a possible mechanistic explanation for the effects of ethanol on GlyR-based on changes in Loop 2 structure.
View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M109.023598
View details for Web of Science ID 000270232300031
View details for PubMedID 19656948
Radioligand binding, photoaffinity labeling, and docking and molecular dynamics were used to characterize the tricyclic antidepressant (TCA) binding sites in the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR). Competition experiments indicate that the noncompetitive antagonist phencyclidine (PCP) inhibits [3H]imipramine binding to resting (closed) and desensitized nAChRs. [3H]2-azidoimipramine photoincorporates into each subunit from the desensitized nAChR with approximately 25% of the labeling specifically inhibited by TCP (a PCP analog), whereas no TCP-inhibitable labeling was observed in the resting (closed) state. For the desensitized nAChR and within the alpha subunit, the majority of specific [3H]2-azidoimipramine labeling mapped to a approximately 20 kDa Staphylococcus aureus V8 protease fragment (alphaV8-20; Ser173-Glu338). To further map the labeling site, the alphaV8-20 fragment was further digested with endoproteinase Lys-C and resolved by Tricine SDS-PAGE. The principal labeled fragment (11 kDa) was further purified by rpHPLC and subjected to N-terminal sequencing. Based on the amino terminus (alphaMet243) and apparent molecular weight, the 11 kDa fragment contains the channel lining M2 segment. Finally, docking and molecular dynamics results indicate that imipramine and PCP interact preferably with the M2 transmembrane segments in the middle of the ion channel. Collectively, these results are consistent with a model where PCP and TCA bind to overlapping sites within the lumen of the Torpedo nAChR ion channel.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.bbamem.2008.08.019
View details for Web of Science ID 000261720300004
View details for PubMedID 18817747
The present study tested the hypothesis that several residues in Loop 2 of alpha1 glycine receptors (GlyRs) play important roles in mediating the transduction of agonist activation to channel gating. This was accomplished by investigating the effect of cysteine point mutations at positions 50-60 on glycine responses in alpha1GlyRs using two-electrode voltage clamp of Xenopus oocytes. Cysteine substitutions produced position-specific changes in glycine sensitivity that were consistent with a beta-turn structure of Loop 2, with odd-numbered residues in the beta-turn interacting with other agonist-activation elements at the interface between extracellular and transmembrane domains. We also tested the hypothesis that the charge at position 53 is important for agonist activation by measuring the glycine response of wild type (WT) and E53C GlyRs exposed to methanethiosulfonate reagents. As earlier, E53C GlyRs have a significantly higher EC(50) than WT GlyRs. Exposing E53C GlyRs to the negatively charged 2-sulfonatoethyl methanethiosulfonate, but not neutral 2-hydroxyethyl methanethiosulfonate, positively charged 2-aminoethyl methanethiosulfonate, or 2-trimethylammonioethyl methanethiosulfonate, decreased the glycine EC(50) to resemble WT GlyR responses. Exposure to these reagents did not significantly alter the glycine EC(50) for WT GlyRs. The latter findings suggest that the negative charge at position 53 is important for activation of GlyRs through its interaction with positive charge(s) in other neighboring agonist activation elements. Collectively, the findings provide the basis for a refined molecular model of alpha1GlyRs based on the recent x-ray structure of a prokaryotic pentameric ligand-gated ion channel and offer insight into the structure-function relationships in GlyRs and possibly other ligand-gated ion channels.
View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M802384200
View details for Web of Science ID 000259719200041
View details for PubMedID 18658152
The purpose of this study was to determine whether pairs of compounds, including general anesthetics, could simultaneously modulate receptor function in a synergistic manner, thus demonstrating the existence of multiple intraprotein anesthetic binding sites.Using standard electrophysiologic methods, we measured the effects of at least one combination of benzene, isoflurane (ISO), halothane (HAL), chloroform, flunitrazepam, zinc, and pentobarbital on at least one of the following ligand gated ion channels: N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors, glycine receptors and gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors.All drug-drug-receptor combinations were found to exhibit additive, not synergistic modulation. ISO with benzene additively depressed N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors function. ISO with HAL additively enhanced glycine receptors function, as did ISO with zinc. ISO with HAL additively enhanced gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors function as did all of the following: HAL with chloroform, pentobarbital with ISO, and flunitrazepam with ISO.The simultaneous allosteric modulation of ligand gated ion channels by general anesthetics is entirely additive. Where pairs of general anesthetic drugs interact synergistically to produce general anesthesia, they must do so on systems more complex than a single receptor.
View details for DOI 10.1213/ane.0b013e31817b70c1
View details for Web of Science ID 000258168300023
View details for PubMedID 18633027
The present studies used increased atmospheric pressure in place of a traditional pharmacological antagonist to probe the molecular sites and mechanisms of ethanol action in glycine receptors (GlyRs). Based on previous studies, we tested the hypothesis that physical-chemical properties at position 52 in extracellular domain Loop 2 of alpha1GlyRs, or the homologous alpha2GlyR position 59, determine sensitivity to ethanol and pressure antagonism of ethanol. Pressure antagonized ethanol in alpha1GlyRs that contain a non-polar residue at position 52, but did not antagonize ethanol in receptors with a polar residue at this position. Ethanol sensitivity in receptors with polar substitutions at position 52 was significantly lower than GlyRs with non-polar residues at this position. The alpha2T59A mutation switched sensitivity to ethanol and pressure antagonism in the WTalpha2GlyR, thereby making it alpha1-like. Collectively, these findings indicate that (i) polarity at position 52 plays a key role in determining sensitivity to ethanol and pressure antagonism of ethanol; (ii) the extracellular domain in alpha1- and alpha2GlyRs is a target for ethanol action and antagonism and (iii) there is structural-functional homology across subunits in Loop 2 of GlyRs with respect to their roles in determining sensitivity to ethanol and pressure antagonism of ethanol. These findings should help in the development of pharmacological agents that antagonize ethanol.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2008.05476.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000257708100030
View details for PubMedID 18485105
Ethanol produces a wide variety of behavioral and physiological effects in the body, but exactly how it acts to produce these effects is still poorly understood. Although ethanol was long believed to act nonspecifically through the disordering of lipids in cell membranes, proteins are at the core of most current theories of its mechanisms of action. Although ethanol affects various biochemical processes such as neurotransmitter release, enzyme function, and ion channel kinetics, we are only beginning to understand the specific molecular sites to which ethanol molecules bind to produce these myriad effects. For most effects of ethanol characterized thus far, it is unknown whether the protein whose function is being studied actually binds ethanol, or if alcohol is instead binding to another protein that then indirectly affects the functioning of the protein being studied. In this Review, we describe criteria that should be considered when identifying alcohol binding sites and highlight a number of proteins for which there exists considerable molecular-level evidence for distinct ethanol binding sites.
View details for DOI 10.1126/scisignal.128re7
View details for Web of Science ID 000207493600003
View details for PubMedID 18632551
Recent crystal structures of the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP) have revealed surprisingly small structural alterations upon ligand binding. Here we investigate the extent to which ligand binding may affect receptor dynamics. AChBP is a homologue of the extracellular component of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs). We have previously used an elastic network normal-mode analysis to propose a gating mechanism for the LGICs and to suggest the effects of various ligands on such motions. However, the difficulties with elastic network methods lie in their inability to account for the modest effects of a small ligand or mutation on ion channel motion. Here, we report the successful application of an elastic network normal mode technique to measure the effects of large ligand binding on receptor dynamics. The present calculations demonstrate a clear alteration in the native symmetric motions of a protein due to the presence of large protein cobratoxin ligands. In particular, normal-mode analysis revealed that cobratoxin binding to this protein significantly dampened the axially symmetric motion of the AChBP that may be associated with channel gating in the full nAChR. The results suggest that alterations in receptor dynamics could be a general feature of ligand binding.
View details for DOI 10.1021/ci700456s
View details for Web of Science ID 000255448400015
View details for PubMedID 18348519
The glycine receptor is a member of the Cys-loop, ligand-gated ion channel family and is responsible for inhibition in the CNS. We examined the orientation of amino acids I229 in transmembrane 1 (TM1) and A288 in TM3, which are both critical for alcohol and volatile anesthetic action. We mutated these two amino acids to cysteines either singly or in double mutants and expressed the receptors in Xenopus laevis oocytes. We tested whether disulfide bonds could form between A288C in TM3 paired with M227C, Y228C, I229C, or S231C in TM1. Application of cross-linking (mercuric chloride) or oxidizing (iodine) agents had no significant effect on the glycine response of wild-type receptors or the single mutants. In contrast, the glycine response of the I229C/A288C double mutant was diminished after application of either mercuric chloride or iodine only in the presence of glycine, indicating that channel gating causes I229C and A288C to fluctuate to be within 6 A apart and form a disulfide bond. Molecular modeling was used to thread the glycine receptor sequence onto a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor template, further demonstrating that I229 and A288 are near-neighbors that can cross-link and providing evidence that these residues contribute to a single binding cavity.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2007.05090.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000253628700019
View details for PubMedID 18036150
Gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors (GABA(A)-R) containing alpha1beta2gamma2 subunits are weakly inhibited by Zn2+, whereas receptors containing only the alpha1beta2 subunits are strongly inhibited. We built homology models of the ion pores of alpha1beta2 and alpha1beta2gamma2 GABA(A)-R using coordinates of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor as a template. Threading the GABA(A)-R beta2 sequence onto this template placed the 17' histidine and the 20' glutamate residues at adjacent locations in the mouth of the pore, such that a nearly ideal tetradentate site for Zn2+ was formed from two histidine and two glutamate residues between adjacent beta subunits in the alpha1beta2 GABA(A)-R. Following optimization with CHARMM, the distance between the alpha-carbons of the adjacent histidine residues was approximately 9.2 A, close to the ideal distance for a Zn2+ binding site. Loss of inhibition by Zn2+ in alpha1beta2gamma2 GABA(A)-R can be explained by the geometry of these residues in the arrangement alpha1beta2gamma2alpha1beta2, in which the nearest C-alpha-C-alpha distance between the histidine residues is 15.5 A, too far apart for an energetically optimal Zn2+ binding site. We then mutated the gamma subunit at the 17' and/or 20' positions. Zn2+ inhibition was not restored in alpha1beta2gamma2 (I282H) receptors. A novel finding is that the modeling shows the native 20' lysine in gamma2 can compete with Zn2+ for binding to the inserted 17' histidine. Sensitivity to Zn2+ was restored in the double mutant receptor, alpha1beta2gamma2 (I282H; K285E), in which the competition with lysine was removed and a more favorable Zn2+ binding site was formed.
View details for DOI 10.1021/ci700324a
View details for Web of Science ID 000253428400011
View details for PubMedID 18197653
Considerable evidence indicates that ethanol acts on specific residues in the transmembrane domains of glycine receptors (GlyRs). In this study, we tested the hypothesis that the extracellular domain is also a target for ethanol action by investigating the effect of cysteine substitutions at positions 52 (extracellular domain) and 267 (transmembrane domain) on responses to n-alcohols and propyl methanethiosulfonate (PMTS) in alpha1GlyRs expressed in Xenopus oocytes. In support of the hypothesis: (i) The A52C mutation changed ethanol sensitivity compared to WT GlyRs; (ii) PMTS produced irreversible alcohol-like potentiation in A52C GlyRs; and (iii) PMTS binding reduced the n-chain alcohol cutoff in A52C GlyRs. Further studies used PMTS binding to cysteines at positions 52 or 267 to block ethanol action at one site in order to determine its effect at other site(s). In these situations, ethanol caused negative modulation when acting at position 52 and positive modulation when acting at position 267. Collectively, these findings parallel the evidence that established the TM domain as a target for ethanol, suggest that positions 52 and 267 are part of the same alcohol pocket and indicate that the net effect of ethanol on GlyR function reflects the summation of its positive and negative modulatory effects on different targets.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2007.04680.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000249452000035
View details for PubMedID 17561937
Predicting collective dynamics and structural changes in biological macromolecules is pivotal toward a better understanding of many biological processes. Limitations due to large system sizes and inaccessible time scales have prompted the development of alternative techniques for the calculation of such motions. In this work, we present the results of a normal-mode analysis technique based on molecular mechanics that enables the calculation of accurate force-field based vibrations of extremely large molecules and compare it with two elastic network approximate models. When applied to the glycine alpha1 receptor, all three normal-mode analysis algorithms demonstrate an "iris-like" gating motion. Such gating motions have implications for understanding the effects of anesthetic and other ligand binding sites and for the means of transducing agonist binding into ion channel opening. Unlike the more approximate methods, molecular mechanics based analyses can also reveal approximate vibrational frequencies. Such analyses may someday allow the use of protein dynamics elucidated via normal-mode calculations as additional endpoints for future drug design.
View details for DOI 10.1021/ci600566j
View details for Web of Science ID 000248192200029
View details for PubMedID 17602605
It is not yet possible to obtain crystal structures of anesthetic molecules bound to proteins that are plausible neuronal targets; for example, ligand-gated ion channels. However, there are x-ray crystal structures in which anesthetics are complexed with proteins that are not directly related to anesthetic action. Much useful information about anesthetic-protein interactions can be derived from the x-ray crystal structures of halothane-cholesterol oxidase, bromoform-luciferase, halothane-albumin, and dichloroethane-dehalogenase. These structures show anesthetic-protein interactions at the atomic level.We obtained the known coordinate files for bromoform-luciferase, halothane- albumin, dichloroethane-dehalogenase, and halothane-cholesterol oxidase. These were then modified by adding hydrogens, edited into subsets, and underwent a series of restrained molecular mechanics optimizations. Final analysis of anesthetic polarization within the anesthetic binding site occurred via combined molecular mechanics-quantum mechanics calculations.The anesthetic binding sites within these well-characterized anesthetic-protein complexes possess a set of common characteristics that we refer to as "binding motifs." The common features of these motifs are polar and nonpolar interactions within an amphiphilic binding cavity, including the presence of weak hydrogen bond interactions with amino acids and water molecules. Calculations also demonstrated the polarizing effect of the amphipathic binding sites on what are otherwise considered quite hydrophobic anesthetics. This polarization appears energetically favorable.Anesthetic binding to proteins involves amphipathic interactions.
View details for DOI 10.1213/01.ane.0000253029.67331.8d
View details for Web of Science ID 000243661000018
View details for PubMedID 17242087
The Meyer-Overton hypothesis predicts that anesthetic potency correlates inversely with lipophilicity; e.g., MAC times the olive oil/gas partition coefficient equals a constant of approximately 1.82 +/- 0.56 atm (mean +/- sd) for conventional inhaled anesthetics. MAC is the minimum alveolar concentration of anesthetic required to eliminate movement in response to a noxious stimulus in 50% of subjects. In contrast to conventional inhaled anesthetics, MAC times the olive oil/gas partition coefficient for normal alcohols from methanol through octanol equals a constant one tenth as large as that for conventional inhaled anesthetics. The alcohol (C-OH) group causes a great affinity of alcohols to water, and the C-OH may tether the alcohol at the hydrophobic-hydrophilic interface where anesthetics are thought to act. We hypothesized that the position of the C-OH group determined potency, perhaps by governing the maximum extent to which the acyl portion of the molecule might extend into a hydrophobic phase. Using the same reasoning, we added studies of ketones with similar numbers of carbon atoms between the C=O group and the terminal methyl group. The results for both alcohols and ketones showed the predicted correlation, but the correlation was no better than that with carbon chain length regardless of the placement of the oxygen. The oil/gas partition coefficient predicted potency as well as, or better than, either chain length or oxygen placement. Hydrophilicity, as indicated by the saline/gas partition coefficient, also seemed to influence potency.
View details for DOI 10.1213/01.ane.0000204258.00676.98
View details for Web of Science ID 000237165800022
View details for PubMedID 16632820
We investigated the molecular mechanisms and the binding site location for the fluorophor crystal violet (CrV), a noncompetitive antagonist of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR). To this end, radiolabeled competition binding, fluorescence spectroscopy, Schild-type analysis, patch-clamp recordings, and molecular dynamics approaches were used. The results indicate that (i) CrV interacts with the desensitized Torpedo AChR with higher affinity than with the resting state at several temperatures (5-37 degrees C); (ii) CrV-induced inhibition of the phencyclidine (PCP) analogue [(3)H]thienylcyclohexylpiperidine binding to the desensitized or resting AChR is mediated by a steric mechanism; (iii) tetracaine inhibits CrV binding to the resting AChR, probably by a steric mechanism; (iv) barbiturates modulate CrV binding to the resting AChR by an allosteric mechanism; (v) CrV itself induces AChR desensitization; (vi) CrV decreases the peak of macroscopic currents by acting on the resting AChR but without affecting the desensitization rate from the open state; and (vii) two tertiary amino groups from CrV may bind to the alpha1-Glu(262) residues (located at position 20') in the resting state. We conclude that the CrV binding site overlaps the PCP locus in the resting and desensitized state. The noncompetitive action of CrV may be explained by an allosteric mechanism in which the binding of CrV to the extracellular mouth of the resting receptor leads to an inhibition of channel opening. Binding of CrV probably increases desensitization of the resting channel and stabilizes the desensitized state.
View details for DOI 10.1021/bi051752e
View details for Web of Science ID 000235451600004
View details for PubMedID 16475790
Glycine receptors (GlyRs) are members of the ligand-gated ion channel superfamily. Each subunit has four transmembrane segments (TM1-TM4). Several studies suggest that amino acids in all four TMs face into a water-filled, alcohol and anesthetic binding cavity in the extracellular portion of the transmembrane domain. TM4 should contribute a "wall" to this cavity, but the residues involved are unknown. Here, we determined the ability of an alcohol analog, propyl methanethiosulfonate (propyl MTS), to covalently react with twelve GlyR TM4 positions (I401-I412) after mutating the original amino acids to cysteines. Reactivity of a cysteine with propyl MTS implies that the cysteine is exposed to water. W407C, I409C, Y410C, and K411C showed altered receptor function following reaction with propyl MTS in the presence or absence of glycine. The cysteine mutations alone eliminated the effects of ethanol for I409C, Y410C, and K411C, and reduced the effects of octanol for I409C and isoflurane for K411C. The ability of propyl MTS to reduce isoflurane and chloroform potentiation was examined in the reactive mutants. Potentiation by isoflurane was significantly reduced for I409C after reaction. These data demonstrate water-accessibility of specific TM4 positions in the GlyR and suggest involvement of these residues with alcohol and anesthetic action.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2005.08.017
View details for Web of Science ID 000235497900005
View details for PubMedID 16225893
General anesthetics are essential to modern medicine, and yet a detailed understanding of their mechanisms of action is lacking. General anesthetics were once believed to be "drugs without receptors" but this view has been largely abandoned. During the past decade significant progress in our understanding of the mechanisms of general anesthetic action at the molecular, cellular and neural systems levels has been made. Different molecular targets in various regions of the nervous system are involved in the multiple components of anesthetic action, and these targets can vary between specific anesthetics. Neurotransmitter-gated ion channels, particularly receptors for GABA and glutamate, are modulated by most anesthetics, at both synaptic and extrasynaptic sites, and additional ion channels and receptors are also being recognized as important targets for general anesthetics. In this article, these developments, which have important implications for the development of more-selective anesthetics, are reviewed in the context of recent advances in ion channel structure and function.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.tips.2005.08.006
View details for Web of Science ID 000232606200004
View details for PubMedID 16126282
The superfamily of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) has been implicated in anesthetic and alcohol responses. Mutations within glycine and GABA receptors have demonstrated that possible sites of anesthetic action exist within the transmembrane subunits of these receptors. The exact molecular arrangement of this transmembrane region remains at intermediate resolution with current experimental techniques. Homology modeling methods were therefore combined with experimental data to produce a more exact model of this region. A consensus from multiple bioinformatics techniques predicted the topology within the transmembrane domain of a glycine alpha one receptor (GlyRa1) to be alpha helical. This fold information was combined with sequence information using the SeqFold algorithm to search for modeling templates. Independently, the FoldMiner algorithm was used to search for templates that had structural folds similar to published coordinates of the homologous nAChR (1OED). Both SeqFold and Foldminer identified the same modeling template. The GlyRa1 sequence was aligned with this template using multiple scoring criteria. Refinement of the alignment closed gaps to produce agreement with labeling studies carried out on the homologous receptors of the superfamily. Structural assignment and refinement was achieved using Modeler. The final structure demonstrated a cavity within the core of a four-helix bundle. Residues known to be involved in modulating anesthetic potency converge on and line this cavity. This suggests that the binding sites for volatile anesthetics in the LGICs are the cavities formed within the core of transmembrane four-helix bundles.
View details for DOI 10.1021/ci0497399
View details for Web of Science ID 000227982800016
View details for PubMedID 15667138
Ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) mediate rapid chemical neurotransmission in the mammalian brain. This gene superfamily includes the nicotinic acetylcholine (nAChR), GABA(A), 5-hydroxytryptamine type 3, and glycine receptors. Upon agonist binding these receptors undergo a rapid allosteric transition from the closed to open state. The molecular mechanism of coupling between agonist binding and channel gating remains poorly understood, in part due to the lack of a high-resolution structure of the entire receptor. Miyazawa, Fujiyoshi, and Unwin published a 4A resolution structure of the nAChR, and proposed that a single residue--valine 44 in Loop 2 of the extracellular domain--functions as a critical determinant of a "pin-into-socket" mechanism for receptor activation in nAChR. Here we examined whether this proposed "pin-into-socket" mechanism also contributes to channel activation in the GABA(A) and glycine receptors. We mutated residues corresponding to nAChR valine 44 in the GABA(A) (alpha(1) histidine 56 and beta(2) valine 53) and glycine (alpha(1) threonine 54) receptors. The results obtained in this study do not support a simple "pin-into-socket" mechanism of activation for the activation of GABA(A) and glycine receptors. This conclusion is consistent with other recent reports in which mutations of residues distributed throughout several loops of nAChR, GABA(A) and glycine receptors had large effects on gating behavior.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.neulet.2004.09.002
View details for Web of Science ID 000225203800030
View details for PubMedID 15519763
We built a model of a GABAA alpha1 receptor (GABAAR) that combines the ligand binding (LBD) and the transmembrane domains (TMD). We used six steps: (1) a four-alpha helical bundle in the crystal structure of bovine cytochrome c oxidase (2OCC) was identified as a template for the TMD of a single subunit. (2) The five pore-forming alpha helices of a bacterial mechanosensitive channel (1MSL) served as a template for the pentameric ion channel. (3) Five copies of the tetrameric template from 2OCC were superimposed on 1MSL to produce a homopentamer containing 20 alpha helices arranged around a funnel-shaped central pore. (4) Five copies of the GABAAR sequence were threaded onto the alpha-helical segments of this template and inter-helical loops were generated to produce the TMD model. (5) A model of the LBD was built by threading the aligned sequence of GABAAR onto the crystal structure of the acetylcholine binding protein (1I9B). (6) The models of the LBD and the TMD were aligned along a common five-fold axis, moved together along that axis until in vdW contact, merged, and then optimized with restrained molecular dynamics. Our model corresponds closely with recently published coordinates of the acetylcholine receptor (1OED) but also explains additional features. Our model reveals structures of loops that were not visible in the cryoelectron micrograph and satisfies most labeling and mutagenesis data. It also suggests mechanisms for ligand binding transduction, ion selectivity, and anesthetic binding.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.jmgm.2004.03.004
View details for Web of Science ID 000224010100004
View details for PubMedID 15331052
The glycine receptor enables the generation of inhibitory postsynaptic currents at synapses via neurotransmitter-dependent activation. These receptors belong to the ligand-gated ion channel gene superfamily, in which all members are comprised of five subunits, each of which possesses a signature 13-residue disulfide loop (Cys loop) in the extracellular domain. In this study, we used alanine-scanning mutagenesis of the residues between C138 and C152 of the Cys loop of the glycine receptor alpha1 subunit to identify residues critical for receptor activation and allosteric modulation. Mutation of L142, F145, or P146 to alanine produced decreases in the potency, maximal amplitude, and Hill coefficient for currents elicited by glycine and impaired receptor activation by the agonist taurine. These residues, along with D148, are positionally conserved in the family of LGIC subunits. Mutation at several other positions had little or no effect. The inhaled anesthetics halothane and isoflurane potentiate submaximal agonist responses at wild-type receptors, via an allosteric site. The mutations L142A, F145A, P146A, and D148A abolished positive modulation by these anesthetics, in some cases revealing a small inhibitory effect. A molecular model of the glycine receptor alpha1 subunit suggests that the Cys loop is positioned in a region of the receptor at the interface between the extracellular and transmembrane domains and that the critical functional residues identified here lie along the face of a predominantly hydrophobic surface. The present data implicate the Cys loop as an important functional moiety in the process of glycine receptor activation and allosteric regulation by anesthetics.
View details for DOI 10.1021/bi036159g
View details for Web of Science ID 000223121200013
View details for PubMedID 15287733
The glycine receptor is a target for both alcohols and anesthetics, and certain amino acids in the alpha1 subunit transmembrane segments (TM) are critical for drug effects. Introducing larger amino acids at these positions increases the potency of glycine, suggesting that introducing larger residues, or drug molecules, into the drug-binding cavity facilitates channel opening. A possible mechanism for these actions is that the volume of the cavity expands and contracts during channel opening and closing. To investigate this hypothesis, mutations for amino acids in TM1 (I229C) and TM2 (G256C, T259C, V260C, M263C, T264C, S267C, S270C) and TM3 (A288C) were individually expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes. The ability of sulfhydryl-specific alkyl methanethiosulfonate (MTS) compounds of different lengths to covalently react with introduced cysteines in both the closed and open states of the receptor was determined. S267C was accessible to short chain (C3-C8) MTS in both open and closed states, but was only accessible to longer chain (C10-C16) MTS compounds in the open state. Reaction with S267C was faster in the open state. I229C and A288C showed state-dependent reaction with MTS only in the presence of agonist. M263C and S270C were also accessible to MTS labeling. Mutated residues more intracellular than M263C did not react, indicating a floor of the cavity. These data demonstrate that the conformational changes accompanying channel gating increase accessibility to amino acids critical for drug action in TM1, TM2, and TM3, which may provide a mechanism by which alcohols and anesthetics can act on glycine (and likely other) receptors.
View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M313941200
View details for Web of Science ID 000223039700102
View details for PubMedID 15169788
Contact points between transmembrane segments (TMs) two and three of the glycine receptor are undefined and may play an important role in channel gating. We tested whether two amino acids in TM2 (S267) and TM3 (A288), known to be critical for alcohol and volatile anesthetic action, could cross-link by mutating both to cysteines and expressing the receptors in Xenopus laevis oocytes. In contrast with the wild-type receptor and single cysteine mutants, the S267C/A288C double mutant displayed unusual responses, including a tonic leak activity that was closed by strychnine and a run-down of the response upon repeated applications of glycine. We hypothesized that these characteristics were due to cross-linking of the two cysteines on opposing faces of these adjacent, alpha helical TMs. This would alter the movement of these two regions required for normal gating. To test this hypothesis, we used dithiothreitol to reduce the putative S267C-A288C disulfide bond. Reduction abolished the leak current and provided normal responses to glycine. Subsequent application of the cross-linking agent mercuric chloride caused the initial characteristics to return. These data demonstrate that S267 and A288 are near-neighbors and provide insight towards the location and role of the TM2-TM3 interface in ligand-gated ion channels.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2004.02561.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000223034200022
View details for PubMedID 15287902
In this study, we have compared the functional consequences of three mutations (R218Q, V260M, and Q266H) in the alpha(1) subunit of the glycine receptor (GlyRA1) causing hyperekplexia, an inherited neurological channelopathy. In HEK-293 cells, the agonist EC(50s) for glycine-activated Cl(-) currents were increased from 26 microm in wtGlyRA1, to 5747, 135, and 129 microm in R218Q, V260M, and Q266H GlyRA1 channels, respectively. Cl(-) currents elicited by beta-alanine and taurine, which behave as agonists at wtGlyRA1, were decreased in V260M and Q266H mutant receptors and virtually abolished in GlyRA1 R218Q receptors. Gly-gated Cl(-) currents were similarly antagonized by low concentrations of strychnine in both wild-type (wt) and R218Q GlyRA1 channels, suggesting that the Arg-218 residue plays a crucial role in GlyRA1 channel gating, with only minor effects on the agonist/antagonist binding site, a hypothesis supported by our molecular model of the GlyRA1 subunit. The R218Q mutation, but not the V260M or the Q266H mutation, caused a marked decrease of receptor subunit expression both in total cell lysates and in isolated plasma membrane proteins. This decreased expression does not seem to explain the reduced agonist sensitivity of GlyRA1 R218Q channels since no difference in the apparent sensitivity to glycine or taurine was observed when wtGlyRA1 receptors were expressed at levels comparable with those of R218Q mutant receptors. In conclusion, multiple mechanisms may explain the dramatic decrease in GlyR function caused by the R218Q mutation, possibly providing the molecular basis for its association with a more severe clinical phenotype.
View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M311021200
View details for Web of Science ID 000221827900087
View details for PubMedID 15066993
The current study used an ethanol antagonist, increased atmospheric pressure, to test the hypothesis that ethanol acts on multiple sites in glycine receptors (GlyRs). The effects of 12 times normal atmospheric pressure of helium-oxygen gas (pressure) on ethanol-induced potentiation of GlyR function in Xenopus oocytes expressing human alpha1, alpha2 or the mutant alpha1(A52S) GlyRs were measured using two-electrode voltage clamp. Pressure reversibly antagonized potentiation of glycine in alpha1 GlyR by 40-200 mm ethanol, but did not antagonize 10 and 25 mm ethanol in the same oocytes. In contrast, pressure did not significantly affect potentiation of glycine by 25-100 mm ethanol in alpha2 GlyRs, nor did pressure alter ethanol response in the A52S mutant. Pressure did not affect baseline receptor function or response to glycine in the absence of ethanol. These findings provide the first direct evidence for multiple sites of ethanol action in GlyRs. The sites can be differentiated on the basis of ethanol concentration, subunit and structural composition and sensitivities to pressure antagonism of ethanol. Parallel studies with butanol support this conclusion. The mutant alpha1(A52S) GlyR findings suggest that increased attention should be focused on the amino terminus as a potential target for ethanol action.
View details for DOI 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2004.02390.x
View details for Web of Science ID 000221437200011
View details for PubMedID 15147510
Ligand-gated ion channels function as rapid signal transducers, converting chemical signals (in the form of neurotransmitters) into electrical signals in the postsynaptic neuron. This is achieved by the recognition of neurotransmitter at its specific-binding sites, which then triggers the opening of an ion channel ('gating'). For this to occur rapidly (< 1 ms), there must be an efficient coupling between the agonist-binding site and the gate, located more than 30 angstroms (1 angstroms = 0.1 nm) away. Whereas a great deal of progress has been made in elucidating the structure and function of both the agonist-binding site and the ion permeation pathway in ligand-gated ion channels, our knowledge of the coupling mechanism between these domains has been limited. In this review, we summarize recent studies of the agonist-binding site and the ion channel in the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor, and discuss those structural elements that may mediate coupling between them. We will also consider some possible molecular mechanisms of receptor activation.
View details for Web of Science ID 000222337900035
View details for PubMedID 15157180
Fast synaptic inhibition in the mammalian central nervous system is mediated primarily via activation of the gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor (GABAA-R). Upon agonist binding, the receptor undergoes a structural transition from the closed to the open state. This transition, known as gating, is thought to be associated with a sequence of conformational changes originating at the agonist-binding site, ultimately resulting in opening of the channel. Using site-directed mutagenesis and several different GABAA-R agonists, we identified a number of highly conserved charged residues in the GABAA-R beta2 subunit that appear to be involved in receptor activation. We then used charge reversal double mutants and disulfide trapping to investigate the interactions between these flexible loops within the beta2 subunit. The results suggest that interactions between an acidic residue in loop 7 (Asp146) and a basic residue in pre-transmembrane domain-1 (Lys215) are involved in coupling agonist binding to channel gating.
View details for DOI 10.1074/jbc.M311441200
View details for Web of Science ID 000188554300114
View details for PubMedID 14610076
To define potential alcohol binding sites in the neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) we used cysteine mutagenesis and sulfhydryl-specific labeling. The basis of this strategy is that covalent addition of an alkylthiol group to a cysteine in an alcohol binding site will mimic the action of an irreversibly bound alcohol. Each amino acid in the extracellular region of the second transmembrane segment of the nAChR subunit alpha2 was mutated to cysteine. The resulting alpha2 subunits were coexpressed with wild-type beta4in Xenopus laevis oocytes, and the responses were studied using two-electrode voltage clamp. Of the 11 mutants tested, 2 fulfilled criteria for participation in an alcohol binding site: alpha2(L262C)beta4 and alpha2(L263C)beta4. Covalent binding of propanethiol to these cysteines did not change acetylcholine (ACh) affinity, but modified ACh maximal response in both cases: it increased for alpha2(L263C)beta4 and decreased for alpha2(L262C)beta4. The same modifications on ACh responses were obtained with ethanol on alpha2(L263C)beta4 and octanol on alpha2(L262C)beta4. This suggested that alcohol binding at L263 enhances receptor function, whereas binding at L262 inhibits function. We studied different n-alcohols (ethanol, butanol, pentanol, and octanol), as well as isoflurane and urethane, on these two mutants. Covalent binding of propanethiol to the cysteines revealed changes in the alcohol modulation consistent with an excitatory site (L263) or an inhibitory site (L262) being no longer accessible to alcohol. Thus, n-alcohols appear to act on both sites and their ability to enhance (short-chain), inhibit (long-chain), or produce no effect (intermediate-chain) depends upon their relative action at these two sites.
View details for DOI 10.1124/jpet.102.053710
View details for Web of Science ID 000185452500006
View details for PubMedID 14500778
Studies using molecular modeling, genetic engineering, neurophysiology/pharmacology, and whole animals have advanced our understanding of where and how inhaled anesthetics act to produce immobility (minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration; MAC) by actions on the spinal cord. Numerous ligand- and voltage-gated channels might plausibly mediate MAC, and specific amino acid sites in certain receptors present likely candidates for mediation. However, in vivo studies to date suggest that several channels or receptors may not be mediators (e.g., gamma-aminobutyric acid A, acetylcholine, potassium, 5-hydroxytryptamine-3, opioids, and alpha(2)-adrenergic), whereas other receptors/channels (e.g., glycine, N-methyl-D-aspartate, and sodium) remain credible candidates.
View details for DOI 10.1213/01.ANE.0000081063.76651.33
View details for Web of Science ID 000184890300025
View details for PubMedID 12933393
We used a series of adamantane derivatives to probe the structure of the phencyclidine locus in either the resting or desensitized state of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR). Competitive radioligand binding and photolabeling experiments using well-characterized noncompetitive antagonists such as the phencyclidine analogue [piperidyl-3,4-(3)H(N)]-N-[1-(2-thienyl)cyclohexyl]-3,4-piperidine ([(3)H]TCP), [(3)H]ethidium, [(3)H]tetracaine, [(14)C]amobarbital, and 3-(trifluoromethyl)-3-(m-[(125)I]iodophenyl)diazirine ([(125)I]TID) were performed. Thermodynamic and structure-function relationship analyses yielded the following results. (1) There is a good structure-function relationship for adamantane amino derivatives inhibiting [(3)H]TCP or [(3)H]tetracaine binding to the resting AChR. (2) Since the same derivatives inhibit neither [(14)C]amobarbital binding nor [(125)I]TID photoincorporation, we conclude that these positively charged molecules preferably bind to the TCP locus, perhaps interacting with alphaGlu(262) residues at position M2-20. (3) The opposite is true for the neutral molecule adamantane, which prefers the TID (or barbiturate) locus instead of the TCP site. (4) The TID site is smaller and more hydrophobic (it accommodates neutral molecules with a maximal volume of 333 +/- 45 A(3)) than the TCP locus, which has room for positively charged molecules with volumes as large as 461 A(3) (e.g., crystal violet). This supports the concept that the resting ion channel is tapering from the extracellular mouth to the middle portion. (5) Finally, although both the hydrophobic environment and the size of the TCP site are practically the same in both states, there is a more obvious cutoff in the desensitized state than in the resting state, suggesting that the desensitization process constrains the TCP locus. A plausible location of neutral and charged adamantane derivatives is shown in a model of the resting ion channel.
View details for DOI 10.1021/bi034052n
View details for Web of Science ID 000183624800010
View details for PubMedID 12809491
Behavioral and biochemical studies indicate that exposure to 12 times normal atmospheric pressure (12 ATA) of helium-oxygen gas (heliox) is a direct, selective ethanol antagonist. The current study begins to test the hypothesis that ethanol acts by a common mechanism on ligand-gated ion channels by expanding previous hyperbaric investigations on gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABA(A)) receptors (GABA(A)Rs) at the biochemical level to alpha(1)glycine (GlyRs) expressed in Xenopus oocytes.Oocytes expressing wild-type alpha(1) homomeric GlyRs were voltage-clamped (-70 mV) and tested in the presence of glycine (EC(2)) +/- ethanol (50-200 mM) under 1 ATA control and 3 to 12 ATA heliox conditions. Glycine concentration response curves, strychnine/glycine interactions, and zinc (Zn2+) modulation of GlyR function was also tested.Pressure reversibly antagonized the action of ethanol. The degree of antagonism increased as pressure increased. Pressure did not significantly alter the effects of glycine, strychnine, or Zn2+, indicating that ethanol antagonism by pressure cannot be attributed to alterations by pressure of normal GlyR function. The antagonism did not reflect tolerance to ethanol, receptor desensitization, or receptor rundown.This is the first use of hyperbarics to investigate the mechanism of action of ethanol in recombinant receptors. The findings indicate that pressure directly and selectively antagonizes ethanol potentiation of alpha(1)GlyR function in a reversible and concentration- and pressure-dependent manner. The sensitivity of ethanol potentiation of GlyR function to pressure antagonism indicates that ethanol acts by a common, pressure-antagonism-sensitive mechanism in GlyRs and GABA(A)Rs. The findings also support the hypothesis that ethanol potentiation of GlyR function plays a role in mediating the sedative-hypnotic effects of ethanol.
View details for DOI 10.1097/01.ALC.0000065722.31109.A1
View details for Web of Science ID 000183083500002
View details for PubMedID 12766618
Neurotransmitters such as acetylcholine and GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) mediate rapid synaptic transmission by activating receptors belonging to the gene superfamily of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs). These channels are pentameric proteins that function as signal transducers, converting chemical messages into electrical signals. Neurotransmitters activate LGICs by interacting with a ligand-binding site, triggering a conformational change in the protein that results in the opening of an ion channel. This process, which is known as 'gating', occurs rapidly and reversibly, but the molecular rearrangements involved are not well understood. Here we show that optimal gating in the GABA(A) receptor, a member of the LGIC superfamily, is dependent on electrostatic interactions between the negatively charged Asp 57 and Asp 149 residues in extracellular loops 2 and 7, and the positively charged Lys 279 residue in the transmembrane 2-3 linker region of the alpha1-subunit. During gating, Asp 149 and Lys 279 seem to move closer to one another, providing a potential mechanism for the coupling of ligand binding to opening of the ion channel.
View details for DOI 10.1038/nature01280
View details for Web of Science ID 000180397600048
View details for PubMedID 12529644
General anesthesia is a complex behavioral state provoked by the pharmacological action of a broad range of structurally different hydrophobic molecules called general anesthetics (GAs) on receptor members of the genetically linked ligand-gated ion channel (LGIC) superfamily. This superfamily includes nicotinic acetylcholine (AChRs), type A and C gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAAR and GABACR), glycine (GlyR), and type 3 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT3R) receptors. This review focuses on recent advances in the localization of GA binding sites on conformationally and compositionally distinct AChRs. The experimental evidence outlined in this review suggests that: 1. Several neuronal-type AChRs might be targets for the pharmacological action of distinct GAs. 2. The molecular components of a specific GA binding site on a certain receptor subtype are different from the structural determinants of the locus for the same GA on a different receptor subtype. 3. There are unique binding sites for distinct GAs in the same receptor protein. 4. A GA can activate, potentiate, or inhibit an ion channel, indicating the existence of more than one binding site for the same GA. 5. The affinity of a specific GA depends on the conformational state of the receptor. 6. GAs inhibition channels by at least two mechanisms, an open-channel-blocking and/or an allosteric mechanism. 7. Certain GAs may inhibit AChR function by competing for the agonist binding sites or by augmenting the desensitization rate.
View details for Web of Science ID 000183896300001
View details for PubMedID 12785284
Recent publications defined requirements for inter-subunit contacts in a benzodiazepine-sensitive GABA(A) receptor (GABA(A)R alpha 1 beta 3 gamma 2). There is strong evidence that the heteropentameric receptor contains two alpha 1, two beta 3, and one gamma 2 subunit. However, the available data do not distinguish two possibilities: When viewed clockwise from an extracellular viewpoint the subunits could be arranged in either gamma 2 beta 3 alpha 1 beta 3 alpha 1 or gamma 2 alpha 1 beta 3 alpha 1 beta 3 configurations. Here we use molecular modeling to thread the relevant GABA(A)R subunit sequences onto a template of homopentameric subunits in the crystal structure of the acetylcholine binding protein (AChBP). The GABA(A) sequences are known to have 15-18% identity with the acetylcholine binding protein and nearly all residues that are conserved within the nAChR family are present in AChBP. The correctly aligned GABA(A) sequences were threaded onto the AChBP template in the gamma 2 beta 3 alpha 1 beta 3 alpha 1 or gamma 2 alpha 1 beta 3 alpha 1 beta 3 arrangements. Only the gamma 2 alpha 1 beta 3 alpha 1 beta 3 arrangement satisfied three known criteria: (1) alpha 1 His(102) binds at the gamma 2 subunit interface in proximity to gamma 2 residues Thr(142), Phe(77), and Met(130); (2) alpha 1 residues 80-100 bind near gamma 2 residues 91-104; and (3) alpha 1 residues 58-67 bind near the beta 3 subunit interface. In addition to predicting the most likely inter-subunit arrangement, the model predicts which residues form the GABA and benzodiazepine binding sites.
View details for Web of Science ID 000178305400011
View details for PubMedID 12225856
Strychnine-sensitive glycine receptors mediate inhibitory neurotransmission occurring in the brain stem and spinal cord. Alcohols, volatile anesthetics and inhaled drugs of abuse are positive allosteric modulators of glycine receptor function, normally enhancing function only in the presence of glycine. A complication in studying allosteric actions on ligand-gated ion channels is in the dissection of their effects on neurotransmitter binding from their effects on channel opening. Mutation of an aspartate residue at position 97 to arginine in the glycine receptor alpha1 subunit simulated the effects of glycine binding, producing receptors that exhibited tonic channel opening in the absence of neurotransmitter; i.e. these receptors demonstrated a dissociation of channel opening from neurotransmitter binding. In these receptors, ethanol, enflurane, chloroform, halothane, 1,1,1-trichloroethane and toluene elicited inward currents in the absence of glycine. We previously identified mutations on ligand-gated ion channels that eliminate ethanol, anesthetic and inhalant actions (such as S267I on alpha1 glycine receptors). The double mutant (D97R and S267I) receptors were both constitutively active and resistant to the enhancing effects of ethanol and enflurane. These data demonstrate that ethanol and volatile anesthetics can affect glycine receptor channel opening independently of their effects on enhancing neurotransmitter binding.
View details for Web of Science ID 000177790000003
View details for PubMedID 12354281
Previous studies have shown that amino acid residues in trans-membrane (TM) segments 1, 2 and 3 of the alpha subunit are critical for the enhancement of GABA(A) receptor function by inhaled anesthetics. In this study we used tryptophan (Trp) scanning mutagenesis between Ile 406 and Asn 417 in the alpha1 subunit to determine the effects of Trp substitution in the fourth transmembrane segment (TM4) on receptor gating and anesthetic modulation. Wild-type and mutant alpha1 subunits were transiently expressed in HEK 293 cells with wild-type beta2 and gamma2s subunits and GABA-activated currents were recorded using whole-cell voltage clamp. The potentiation by three inhaled anesthetics (isoflurane, halothane and chloroform) of responses elicited by a submaximal concentration of GABA were also examined.EC(50) values for GABA at the mutant receptors were in the range 4-60 microM (wild-type=20 microM), indicating that Trp substitution can alter the apparent affinity of the receptor for GABA positively or negatively, dependent on position. The variation of the calculated EC(50) value for GABA exhibited an interesting periodicity, with the cycle length for each repeat corresponding to approximately 3.6 amino acids. These data are consistent with an alpha-helical structure for the TM4 segment of the alpha subunit. Several of these Trp point mutations altered the ability of one or more of the three inhaled anesthetics to modulate receptor function; four of the 12 mutations abolished receptor modulation by one or more of the anesthetics tested. These data are consistent with a role for these residues at the extracellular end of TM4 in anesthetic modulation of GABA(A) receptors.
View details for Web of Science ID 000178876900020
View details for PubMedID 12367612
There has been rapid progress in molecular modelling in recent years. The convergence of improved software for molecular mechanics and dynamics, techniques for chimeric substitution and site-directed mutations, and the first x-ray structures of transmembrane ion channels have made it possible to build and test models of anaesthetic binding sites. These models have served as guides for site-directed mutagenesis and as starting points for understanding the molecular dynamics of anaesthetic-site interactions. Ligand-gated ion channels are targets for inhaled anaesthetics and alcohols in the central nervous system. The inhibitory strychnine-sensitive glycine and gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors are positively modulated by anaesthetics and alcohols; site-directed mutagenesis techniques have identified amino acid residues important for the action of volatile anaesthetics and alcohols in these receptors. Key questions are whether these amino acid mutations form part of alcohol- or anaesthetic-binding sites or if they alter protein stability in a way that allows anaesthetic molecules to act remotely by non-specific mechanisms. It is likely that molecular modelling will play a major role in answering these questions.
View details for Web of Science ID 000176825400004
View details for PubMedID 12173239
Recent mutational analyses of ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs) have demonstrated a plausible site of anesthetic action within their transmembrane domains. Although there is a consensus that the transmembrane domain is formed from four membrane-spanning segments, the secondary structure of these segments is not known. We utilized 10 state-of-the-art bioinformatics techniques to predict the transmembrane topology of the tetrameric regions within six members of the LGIC family that are relevant to anesthetic action. They are the human forms of the GABA alpha 1 receptor, the glycine alpha 1 receptor, the 5HT3 serotonin receptor, the nicotinic AChR alpha 4 and alpha 7 receptors and the Torpedo nAChR alpha 1 receptor. The algorithms utilized were HMMTOP, TMHMM, TMPred, PHDhtm, DAS, TMFinder, SOSUI, TMAP, MEMSAT and TOPPred2. The resulting predictions were superimposed on to a multiple sequence alignment of the six amino acid sequences created using the CLUSTAL W algorithm. There was a clear statistical consensus for the presence of four alpha helices in those regions experimentally thought to span the membrane. The consensus of 10 topology prediction techniques supports the hypothesis that the transmembrane subunits of the LGICs are tetrameric bundles of alpha helices.
View details for Web of Science ID 000176585100001
View details for PubMedID 12082162
View details for Web of Science ID 000184178900003
The in vivo potencies of anesthetics correlate with their capacity to suppress the reaction of luciferin with luciferase. In addition, luciferin has structural resemblances to etomidate. These observations raise the issues of whether luciferin, itself, might affect anesthetic requirement, and whether luciferase resembles the site of anesthetic action. Because the polar luciferin is unlikely to cross the blood-brain barrier (we found that the olive oil/water partition coefficient was 100 +/- 36 x 10(-7)), we studied these issues in rats by measuring the effect of infusion of luciferin in artificial cerebrospinal fluid into the lumbar subarachnoidal space and into the cerebral intraventricular space on the MAC (the minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration required to eliminate movement in response to a noxious stimulus in 50% of tested subjects) of isoflurane. MAC in rats given lumbar intrathecal doses of luciferin estimated to greatly exceed anesthetizing doses of etomidate, did not differ significantly from MAC in rats receiving only artificial cerebrospinal fluid into the lumbar intrathecal space. MAC slightly decreased when doses of luciferin estimated to greatly exceed anesthetizing doses of etomidate were infused intraventricularly (P < 0.05). In contrast to the absent or minimal effects of luciferin, intrathecal or intraventricular infusion of etomidate at similar or smaller doses significantly decreased isoflurane MAC. Luciferin did not affect +-aminobutyric acid type A or acetylcholine receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. These results suggest that luciferin has minimal or no anesthetic effects. It also suggests that luciferin/luciferase may not provide a good surrogate for the site at which anesthetics act, if this site is on the surface of neuronal cells.In proportion to their potencies, anesthetics inhibit luciferin's action on luciferase, and luciferin structurally resembles the anesthetic etomidate. However, in contrast to etomidate, luciferin given intrathecally or into the third cerebral ventricle does not have anesthetic actions, and it does not affect +-aminobutyric acid or acetylcholine receptors in vitro. Luciferase may not provide a good surrogate for the site at which anesthetics act.
View details for Web of Science ID 000171820500036
View details for PubMedID 11682406
The GABA(A) receptor is an important target for a variety of general anesthetics (Franks and Lieb, 1994) and for benzodiazepines such as diazepam. Specific point mutations in the GABA(A) receptor selectively abolish regulation by benzodiazepines (Rudolph et al., 1999; McKernan et al., 2000) and by anesthetic ethers (Mihic et al., 1997; Krasowski et al., 1998; Koltchine et al., 1999), suggesting the existence of discrete binding sites on the GABA(A) receptor for these drugs. Using anesthetics of different molecular size (isoflurane > halothane > chloroform) together with complementary mutagenesis of specific amino acid side chains, we estimate the volume of a proposed anesthetic binding site as between 250 and 370 A(3). The results of the "cutoff" analysis suggest a common site of action for the anesthetics isoflurane, halothane, and chloroform on the GABA(A) receptor. Moreover, the data support a crucial role for Leu232, Ser270, and Ala291 in the alpha subunit in defining the boundaries of an amphipathic cavity, which can accommodate a variety of small general anesthetic molecules.
View details for Web of Science ID 000167422200002
View details for PubMedID 11245705
The mechanisms of general anesthesia in the central nervous system are finally yielding to molecular examination. As a result of research during the past several decades, a group of ligand-gated ion channels have emerged as plausible targets for general anesthetics. Molecular biology techniques have greatly accelerated attempts to classify ligand-gated ion channel sensitivity to general anesthetics, and have identified the sites of receptor subunits critical for anesthetic modulation using chimeric and mutated receptors. The experimental data have facilitated the construction of tenable molecular models for anesthetic binding sites, which in turn allows structural predictions to be tested. In vivo significance of a putative anesthetic target can now be examined by targeted gene manipulations in mice. In this review, we summarize from a molecular perspective recent advances in our understanding of mechanisms of action of general anesthetics on ligand-gated ion channels.
View details for Web of Science ID 000168439400002
View details for PubMedID 11264449
There has been rapid progress in molecular modeling of LGICs in recent years. The convergence of improved software for molecular mechanics/dynamics, techniques of chimeric substitution and site-directed mutations, and the first X-ray structures of transmembrane ion channels will make it possible to build reasonable models of neuronal ion channels well in advance of publication of their crystal structures. These models will not only serve as guides for future site-directed mutagenesis, but they will also be a starting point for understanding the dynamics of ion channel gating.
View details for Web of Science ID 000170995200004
View details for PubMedID 11526737
Meyer and Overton suggested that anesthetic potency correlates inversely with lipophilicity. Thus, MAC times the olive oil/gas partition coefficient equals an approximately constant value of 1.82 +/- 0.56 atm (mean +/- SD). MAC is the minimum alveolar concentration of anesthetic required to eliminate movement in response to a noxious stimulus in 50% of subjects. Although MAC times the olive oil/gas partition coefficient also equals an approximately constant value for normal alkanols from methanol through octanol, the value (0.156 +/- 0.072 atm) is 1/10th that found for conventional anesthetics. We hypothesized that substitution of sulfur for the oxygen in n-alkanols would decrease their saline/gas partition coefficients (i.e., decrease polarity) while sustaining lipid/gas partition coefficients. Further, we hypothesized that these changes would produce products of MAC times olive oil partition coefficients that approximate those of conventional anesthetics. To test these predictions, we measured MAC in rats, and saline and olive oil solubilities for the series H(CH(2))(n)SH, comparing the results with the series H(CH(2))(n)OH for compounds having three to six carbon atoms. As hypothesized, the alkanethiols had similar oil/gas partition coefficients, 1000-fold smaller saline gas partition coefficients, and MAC values 30 times greater than for comparable alkanols. Such findings are consistent with the notion that the greater potency of many alkanols (greater than would be predicted from conventional inhaled anesthetics and the Meyer-Overton hypothesis) results from their greater polarity. Implications: The in vivo anesthetic potency of alkanols and alkanethiols correlates with their lipophilicity and hydrophilicity.
View details for Web of Science ID 000165053600045
View details for PubMedID 11049925
1. Each residue in the second transmembrane segment (TM2) of the human GABA(A) receptor alpha(2) subunit was individually mutated to tryptophan. The wild-type or mutant alpha(2) subunits were expressed with the wild-type human GABA(A) receptor beta(2) subunit in Xenopus oocytes, and the effects of these mutations were investigated using two-electrode voltage-clamp recording. 2. Four mutations (V257W, T262W, T265W and S270W) produced receptors which were active in the absence of agonist, and this spontaneous open channel activity was blocked by both picrotoxin and bicuculline, except in the alpha(2)(V257W)beta(2) mutant receptor, which was not sensitive to picrotoxin. 3. Six mutations (V257W, V260W, T262W, T267W, S270W and A273W) enhanced the agonist sensitivity of the receptor, by 10 - 100 times compared with the wild-type alpha(2)beta(2) receptor. Other mutations (T261W, V263W, L269W, I271W and S272W) had little or no effect on the apparent affinity of the receptor to GABA. Eight of the tryptophan mutations (R255, T256, F258, G259, L264, T265, M266 or T268) resulted in undetectable GABA-induced currents. 4. The S270W mutation eliminated potentiation of GABA by ethanol, whereas T261W markedly increased the action of ethanol. The T262W mutation produced direct activation (10% of maximal GABA response) by ethanol in the absence of GABA, while other mutations did not alter the action of ethanol significantly. 5. These results are consistent with a unique role for S270 in the action of ethanol within the TM2 region, and with models of GABA(A) receptor channel function, in which specific residues within TM2 are critical for the regulation of channel gating (S270, L264), while other residues (L269, I271 and S272) have little effect on these functions and may be non-critical structural residues.
View details for Web of Science ID 000089702600018
View details for PubMedID 10991923
Ligand-gated ion channels are a target for inhaled anesthetics and alcohols in the central nervous system. The inhibitory strychnine-sensitive glycine and gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors are positively modulated by anesthetics and alcohols, and site-directed mutagenesis techniques have identified amino acid residues important for the action of volatile anesthetics and alcohols in these receptors. A key question is whether these amino acids are part of an alcohol/anesthetic-binding site. In the present study, we used an alkanethiol anesthetic to covalently label its binding site by mutating selected amino acids to cysteine. We demonstrated that the anesthetic propanethiol, or alternatively, propyl methanethiosulfonate, covalently binds to cysteine residues introduced into a specific second transmembrane site in glycine receptor and gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor subunits and irreversibly enhances receptor function. Moreover, upon permanent occupation of the site by propyl disulfide, the usual ability of octanol, enflurane, and isoflurane to potentiate the function of the ion channels was lost. This approach provides strong evidence that the actions of anesthetics in these receptors are due to binding at a single site.
View details for Web of Science ID 000088608000097
View details for PubMedID 10908659
All series of volatile and gaseous compounds contain members that can produce anesthesia, as defined by the minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration (MAC) required to produce immobility in response to a noxious stimulus. For unhalogenated n-alkanes, cycloalkanes, aromatic compounds, and n-alkanols, potency (1 MAC) increases by two-to threefold with each carbon addition in the series (e.g., ethanol is twice as potent as methanol). Total fluorination (perfluorination) of n-alkanes essentially eliminates anesthetic potency: only CF4 is anesthetic (MAC = 66.5 atm), which indicates that fluorine atoms do not directly influence sites of anesthetic action. Fluorine may enhance the anesthetic action of other moieties, such as the hydrogen atom in CHF3 (MAC = 1.60 atm), but, consistent with the notion that the fluorine atoms do not directly influence sites of anesthetic action, adding -(CF2)n moieties does not further increase potency (e.g., CHF2-CF3 MAC = 1.51 atm). Similarly, adding -(CF2)n moieties to perfluorinated alkanols (CH2OH-[CF2]nF) does not increase potency. However, adding a second terminal hydrogen atom (e.g., CHF2-CHF2 or CH2OH-CHF2) produces series in which the addition of each -CF2- "spacer" in the middle of the molecule increases potency two- to threefold, as in each unhalogenated series. This parallel stops at four or five carbon atom chain lengths. Further increases in chain length (i.e., to CHF2[CF2]4CHF2 or CHF2[CF2]5CH2OH) decrease or abolish potency (i.e., a discontinuity arises). This leads to our hypothesis that the anesthetic moieties (-CHF2 and -CH2OH) interact with two distinct, spatially separate, sites. Both sites must be influenced concurrently to produce a maximal anesthetic (immobility) effect. We propose that the maximal potency (i.e., for CHF2[CF2]2CHF2 and CHF2[CF2]3CH2OH) results when the spacing between the anesthetic moieties most closely matches the distance between the two sites of action. This reasoning suggests that a distance equivalent to a four or five carbon atom chain, approximately 5 A, separates the two sites.Volatile anesthetics may produce immobility by a concurrent action on two sites five carbon atom lengths apart.
View details for Web of Science ID 000080505500036
View details for PubMedID 10357351
The Meyer-Overton hypothesis predicts that the potency of conventional inhaled anesthetics correlates inversely with lipophilicity: minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration (MAC) x the olive oil/gas partition coefficient equals a constant of approximately 1.82 +/- 0.56 atm (mean +/- SD), whereas MAC x the octanol/gas partition coefficient equals a constant of approximately 2.55 +/- 0.65 atm. MAC is the minimum alveolar concentration of anesthetic required to eliminate movement in response to a noxious stimulus in 50% of subjects. Although MAC x the olive oil/gas partition coefficient also equals a constant for normal alkanols from methanol through octanol, the constant (0.156 +/- 0.072 atm) is one-tenth that found for conventional anesthetics, whereas the product for MAC x the octanol/gas partition coefficient (1.72 +/- 1.19) is similar to that for conventional anesthetics. These normal alkanols also have much greater affinities for water (saline/gas partition coefficients equaling 708 [octanol] to 3780 [methanol]) than do conventional anesthetics. In the present study, we examined whether fluorination lowers alkanol saline/gas partition coefficients (i.e., decreases polarity) while sustaining or increasing lipid/gas partition coefficients, and whether alkanols with lower saline/gas partition coefficients had products of MAC x olive oil or octanol/gas partition coefficients that approached or exceeded those of conventional anesthetics. Fluorination decreased saline/gas partition coefficients to as low as 0.60 +/- 0.08 (CF3[CF2]6CH2OH) and, as hypothesized, increased the product of MAC x the olive oil or octanol/gas partition coefficients to values equaling or exceeding those found for conventional anesthetics. We conclude that the greater potency of many alkanols (greater than would be predicted from conventional inhaled anesthetics and the Meyer-Overton hypothesis) is associated with their greater polarity. Implications: Inhaled anesthetic potency correlates with lipophilicity, but potency of common alkanols is greater than their lipophilicity indicates, in part because alkanols have a greater hydrophilicity--i.e., a greater polarity.
View details for Web of Science ID 000079570200033
View details for PubMedID 10195540
Previous work demonstrates that various anesthetics enhance the effect of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), and this enhancement has been proposed as an explanation for how anesthetics cause anesthesia. This explanation extends to both fluorinated and unfluorinated alkanols. In the present study, we tested the capacity of fluorinated alkanols to enhance the function of the GABA(A) receptors expressed in Xenopus oocytes. CF3CH2OH, CF3(CF2)2CH2OH and CF3(CF2)4CH2OH potentiated GABA(A) receptor function, but CF3(CF2)5CH2OH did not. The degree of potentiation decreased in proportion to the chain length of the alkanols. These findings were not specific for receptors expressed in oocytes, as similar results were obtained with muscimol-stimulated 36Cl- uptake using mouse brain membrane vesicles. Although CF3(CF2)5CH2OH has been reported to enhance the capacity of desflurane to produce immobility in vivo, in our in vitro studies, this compound reduced potentiation of GABA-gated response by anesthetics such as isoflurane, enflurane, and pentobarbital. CHF2(CF2)5CH2OH, which has in vivo anesthetic effects, also failed to potentiate GABA(A) receptor function. These results indicate that the GABA(A) receptor is not the only receptor affected by fluorinated alkanols and that other receptors contribute to the capacity of alkanols to produce immobility. In particular, CF3(CF2)5CH2OH and CF3CH2OH inhibited N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor-mediated responses, which raises the possibility that this receptor is important for actions of fluorinated alkanols. Implications: We find a consistent parallel between the immobilization produced by fluorinated alkanols and their actions on N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors but do not find a consistent parallel between immobilization and effects on gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptors. Thus, we suggest that N-methyl-D-aspartate, but not gamma-aminobutyric acid type A, receptors may mediate the capacity of anesthetics to produce immobilization.
View details for Web of Science ID 000079570200034
View details for PubMedID 10195541
(1) Successful application of molecular mechanics and molecular dynamics calculations to the binding of halogenated anesthetics requires forcefields with correct parameters for halocarbons. (2) Unfortunately, our survey of six popular forcefields revealed that some of them provide a very poor representation of electrostatic interactions for the halogens. (3) This problem is due to poor or missing assignments of partial atomic charges to the halogen atoms. (4) We describe the forcefields most appropriate for use with halogenated anesthetics and suggest a general method for editing the assignment of partial atomic charges by performing an initial quantum mechanics calculation.
View details for Web of Science ID 000078217400058
How some noble and diatomic gases produce anesthesia remains unknown. Although these gases have apparently minimal capacities to interact with a putative anesthetic site, xenon is a clinical anesthetic, and argon, krypton, and nitrogen produce anesthesia at hyperbaric pressures. In contrast, neon, helium, and hydrogen do not cause anesthesia at partial pressures up to their convulsant thresholds. We propose that anesthetic sites influenced by noble or diatomic gases produce binding energies composed of London dispersion and charge-induced dipole energies that are sufficient to overcome the concurrent unfavorable decrease in entropy that occurs when a gas molecule occupies the site. To test this hypothesis, we used the x-ray diffraction model of the binding site for Xe in metmyoglobin. This site offers a positively charged moiety of histidine 93 that is 3.8 A from Xe. We simulated placement of He, Ne, Ar, Kr, Xe, H2, and N2 sequentially at this binding site and calculated the binding energies, as well as the repulsive entropy contribution. We used free energies obtained from tonometry experiments to validate the calculated binding energies. We used partial pressures of gases that prevent response to a noxious stimulus (minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration [MAC]) as the anesthetic endpoint. The calculated binding energies correlated with binding energies derived from the in vivo (ln) data (RTln[MAC], where R is the gas constant and T is absolute temperature) with a slope near 1.0, indicating a parallel between the Xe binding site in metmyoglobin and the anesthetic site of action of noble and diatomic gases. Nonimmobilizing gases (Ne, He, and H2) could be distinguished by an unfavorable balance between binding energies and the repulsive entropy contribution. These gases also differed in their inability to displace water from the cavity. Implications: The Xe binding site in metmyoglobin is a good model for the anesthetic sites of action of noble and diatomic gases. The additional binding energy provided by induction of a dipole in the gas by a charge at the binding site enhanced binding.
View details for Web of Science ID 000075172200034
View details for PubMedID 9706942
We assessed the anesthetic properties of helium and neon at hyperbaric pressures by testing their capacity to decrease anesthetic requirement for desflurane using electrical stimulation of the tail as the anesthetic endpoint (i.e., the minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration [MAC]) in rats. Partial pressures of helium or neon near those predicted to produce anesthesia by the Meyer-Overton hypothesis (approximately 80-90 atm), tended to increase desflurane MAC, and these partial pressures of helium and neon produced convulsions when administered alone. In contrast, the noble gases argon, krypton, and xenon were anesthetic with mean MAC values of (+/- SD) of 27.0 +/- 2.6, 7.31 +/- 0.54, and 1.61 +/- 0.17 atm, respectively. Because the lethal partial pressures of nitrogen and sulfur hexafluoride overlapped their anesthetic partial pressures, MAC values were determined for these gases by additivity studies with desflurane. Nitrogen and sulfur hexafluoride MAC values were estimated to be 110 and 14.6 atm, respectively. Of the gases with anesthetic properties, nitrogen deviated the most from the Meyer-Overton hypothesis. Implications: It has been thought that the high pressures of helium and neon that might be needed to produce anesthesia antagonize their anesthetic properties (pressure reversal of anesthesia). We propose an alternative explanation: like other compounds with a low affinity to water, helium and neon are intrinsically without anesthetic effect.
View details for Web of Science ID 000075172200035
View details for PubMedID 9706943
Previous studies have emphasized the role of molecular polarizability and electric moments, especially dipole and quadrupole moments, in binding of drugs to sites of action. A recent publication of ED50s that prevent response to a noxious stimulus for eight fluorobenzenes has made it possible to compare anesthetic potency with ab initio Hartree-Fock calculations of molecular polarizability as well as dipole and quadrupole moments. Fluorobenzenes provide a stringent test of the role of electric moments in anesthetic potency because individual dipole moments range from 0 to 2.84 debye (D) while the quadrupole moment of benzene is large and negative (-30 x 10(-40) C m(2)), that of hexafluorobenzene is large and positive (30 x 10(-40) C m(2)), and that of 1,3,5-trifluorobenzene is nearly zero. We found that anesthetic potency of fluorobenzenes was not affected by the presence of either dipole or quadrupole moments. This result is surprising because fluoroalkanes and fluorocycloalkanes are most potent when half fluorinated and are usually not anesthetics when perfluorinated. The results suggest that electrostatic interactions are not important for binding of fluorobenzenes at sites of anesthetic action and that these sites are different from those that bind conventional anesthetics.
View details for Web of Science ID 000074833300002
View details for PubMedID 17029714
Volatile anesthetic concentrations have been difficult to measure, but are an important experimental parameter for in vitro studies of anesthetic actions. Calcium sensitive electrodes were investigated as a means of continuously monitoring anesthetic concentrations in artificial cerebrospinal fluids (ACSF). Anesthetic-induced Ca2+ electrode signals were compared at room (22 degrees C) and physiological (35 degrees C) temperatures. Electrophysiological measures of anesthetic effects on synaptic potentials provided a bioassay. Halothane and isoflurane produced negative changes in calcium electrode potentials which were linearly related to concentrations over a clinically useful range (0.5-1.5 MAC). Anesthetic-induced voltages persisted in nominally zero Ca2+ ACSF and even in deionized water. A good correlation (r>0.9) was found for calcium electrode measures of anesthetic concentration and synaptic response depression produced by halothane, at both 22 and 35 degrees C. These results support three conclusions: (1) calcium sensitive electrodes provide a useful measure of volatile anesthetic concentrations in aqueous solution. (2) Care must be taken when using these electrodes for Ca2+ concentration measurements, if a volatile anesthetic is also to be used, since the anesthetic could introduce an appreciable error (>50%). (3) A temperature change of 13 degrees C had surprisingly little effect on Ca2+ electrode responses or on synaptic depression produced by anesthetics.
View details for Web of Science ID 000074562400021
View details for PubMedID 9696323
Alcohols in the homologous series of n-alcohols increase in central nervous system depressant potency with increasing chain length until a "cutoff" is reached, after which further increases in molecular size no longer increase alcohol potency. A similar phenomenon has been observed in the regulation of ligand-gated ion channels by alcohols. Different ligand-gated ion channels exhibit radically different cutoff points, suggesting the existence of discrete alcohol binding pockets of variable size on these membrane proteins. The identification of amino acid residues that determine the alcohol cutoff may, therefore, provide information about the location of alcohol binding sites. Alcohol regulation of the glycine receptor is critically dependent on specific amino acid residues in transmembrane domains 2 and 3 of the alpha subunit. We now demonstrate that these residues in the glycine alpha1 and the gamma-aminobutyric acid rho1 receptors also control alcohol cutoff. By mutation of Ser-267 to Gln, it was possible to decrease the cutoff in the glycine alpha1 receptor, whereas mutation of Ile-307 and/or Trp-328 in the gamma-aminobutyric acid rho1 receptor to smaller residues increased the cutoff. These results support the existence of alcohol binding pockets in these membrane proteins and suggest that the amino acid residues present at these positions can control the size of the alcohol binding cavity.
View details for Web of Science ID 000073852600117
View details for PubMedID 9600996
Molecular mechanisms of anesthetic action on neurotransmitter receptors are poorly understood. The major excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system is glutamate, and recent studies found that volatile anesthetics inhibit the function of the alpha-amino-3-hydroxyisoxazolepropionic acid subtype of glutamate receptors (e.g. glutamate receptor 3 (GluR3)), but enhance kainate (GluR6) receptor function. We used this dissimilar pharmacology to identify sites of anesthetic action on the kainate GluR6 receptor by constructing chimeric GluR3/GluR6 receptors. Results with chimeric receptors implicated a transmembrane region (TM4) of GluR6 in the action of halothane. Site-directed mutagenesis subsequently showed that a specific amino acid, glycine 819 in TM4, is important for enhancement of receptor function by halothane (0. 2-2 mM). Mutations of Gly-819 also markedly decreased the response to isoflurane (0.2-2 mM), enflurane (0.2-2 mM), and 1-chloro-1,2, 2-trifluorocyclobutane (0.2-2 mM). The nonanesthetics 1, 2-dichlorohexafluorocyclobutane and 2,3-dichlorooctafluorobutane had no effect on the functions of either wild-type GluR6 or receptors mutated at Gly-819. Ethanol and pentobarbital inhibited the function of both wild-type and mutant receptors. These results suggest that a specific amino acid, Gly-819, is critical for the action of volatile anesthetics, but not of ethanol or pentobarbital, on the GluR6 receptor.
View details for Web of Science ID 000072876300065
View details for PubMedID 9525931
Bcl-2 expression in neural cells has been shown to inhibit apoptotic death in association with a decrease in reactive oxygen species. We present the results of a study that used electron spin resonance (ESR) measurements to evaluate the level of hydroxyl radical production in bcl-2 expressing GT1-7 cells and control cells. Incubation of cell monolayers with the spin trap N-t-alpha-phenylnitrone (PBN), and measurements of the hydroxyl radical production at different timepoints, revealed a higher radical production in control cells than in bcl-2 expressing cells, even in the absence of insult. The ESR signal was suppressed by addition of ethanol, indicating that the trapped radical was indeed hydroxyl radical. The mechanism by which the expression of bcl-2 leads to a decrease in cellular production of hydroxyl radical is unknown.
View details for Web of Science ID A1996UB34600007
View details for PubMedID 8728122
Ethanol-induced fatty liver in rats was attenuated by repeated running exercise, and the protective effect of exercise was associated with the synergistic expression of heat shock proteins (HSP72). Rats were placed in four groups of six. The two ethanol-fed groups of rats received a liquid diet (Lieber-DeCarli formulation) in which 36% of the calories were derived from ethanol. One group remained sedentary (S/E), whereas the other was trained to run on a rodent treadmill at a speed of 27 m/min, 1 hr/day, 5 days/week, for 7 weeks (R/E). Two other groups--one exercised as previously mentioned (R/C) and one sedentary (S/C)--received control-liquid diets in which the ethanol was isocalorically substituted with a dextran/maltose mixture. The degree of fatty infiltration in liver sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin was graded on a 0-4 scale and the data analyzed by ANOVA on ranks. Ethanol significantly induced fatty infiltration in the S/E group, whereas fatty infiltration in the livers of the R/E group was not different from the S/C group. Electrophoresis and Western blotting of liver homogenates demonstrated that HSP72 was not expressed in either the S/C or S/E groups and was only slightly expressed in the R/C group. The combination of exercise and ethanol, however, resulted in an elevated expression of HSP72 in the R/E group. The content of HSP73 was unaffected by any treatment.
View details for Web of Science ID A1995RE22800035
View details for PubMedID 7573804
View details for Web of Science ID A1995BE26E00017
Oil/saline partition coefficients for inhaled compounds often are defined by the ratio of the separately determined oil/gas and saline/gas partition coefficients. This approach assumes that the concurrent presence of oil with saline has no effect on the characteristics of either solvent. To test this assumption, we measured the oil/gas and saline/gas partition coefficients for CF3(CCIF)2CF3 and 1,2-dichloroperfluorocyclobutane (C4Cl2F6) separately and with the two phases mixed in a common container. We chose these compounds because they have radically different oil/gas and saline/gas partition coefficients and thus would provide a severe test of the assumption. For CF3(CCIF)2CF3, olive oil/saline partition coefficients were, respectively, 13,200 and 13,300 when measured separately and in mixed phases, and the octanol/saline partition coefficients were 19,200 and 18,100. Similarly, olive oil/saline partition coefficients for 1,2-dichloroperfluorocyclobutane were 3660 and 3500 when measured separately and in mixed phases, respectively, and the octanol/saline partition coefficients were 5140 and 4560. We conclude that differences between separate and mixed-phase determinations of ratios are small or nonexistent.
View details for Web of Science ID A1994PU60200006
View details for PubMedID 7978426
Alcohol dramatically reduced loss of heat shock proteins (HSP73) and prevented morphological damage in monolayers of hepatocytes prepared from alcohol-fed rats. The monolayers were treated with 0, 5, 25, or 100 mM alcohol and triplicate samples were assayed at 24, 48, 72, and 96 hr after exposure. The content of HSP73 was measured by PAGE electrophoresis and Western blotting with a mouse monoclonal anti-HSP70 IgG antibody. HSP72 is not expressed under these conditions. Damage to the hepatocytes, quantified by leakage of lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), was also decreased by 100 mM alcohol. Although the initial 100 mM alcohol concentration decreased logarithmically to 1.7 mM over the first 24 hr, the effect of alcohol on HSP73 loss, LDH leakage, and morphological damage was most pronounced at 96 hr.
View details for Web of Science ID A1994PW78500029
View details for PubMedID 7999022
Previous studies have shown that exposure of phenobarbital-pretreated rats to halothane in 10% O2 causes centrilobular necrosis, induces expression of the 72-kDa heat shock protein (HSP72), and produces several trifluoroacetylated adducts. In the present study the time course of development of the centrilobular lesion, as measured by histochemistry, was compared with the time course of appearance of both trifluoroacetylated adducts and HSP72, as measured by Western blotting. One group of 20 rats was pretreated with phenobarbital for 5 days, whereas a second group of two rats was left as untreated controls. Ten phenobarbital-pretreated rats were exposed for 2 hr to 1% halothane in 10% O2 and 10 were exposed to 1% halothane in 20% O2. At either 2, 4, 6, or 24 hr after exposure, livers were excised and frozen without fixation. Thin sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin demonstrated that centrilobular lesions occurred at 6 hr and became extensive at 24 hr in rats pretreated with phenobarbital and exposed to 1% halothane in 10% O2. The time course of appearance of both trifluoroacetylated adducts and HSP72 was determined by Western blotting. Trifluoroacetylated adducts appeared in all rats exposed to halothane by 2 hr, lasted until 6 hr, and then diminished by 24 hr. In contrast, HSP72 was induced only in the rats pretreated with phenobarbital and exposed to 1% halothane in 10% O2. HSP72 appeared in both the nuclear and supernatant fractions at 6 hr after exposure and was intense 24 hr after exposure.
View details for Web of Science ID A1994PQ53800008
View details for PubMedID 7526150
These experiments were designed to observe specific binding of fluorescein-conjugated FAB'2 secondary antibodies to epitopes on the surface of isolated hepatocytes. The hepatocytes were attached as monolayers on microscope cover slips and an antigenic adduct known to be formed during metabolism of halothane, -trifluoroacetyl-1,2-dioleoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine, was exchanged into their surface. Then the monolayers of hepatocytes were incubated with primary rabbit antibodies specific for the trifluoroacetyl group. Each coverslip was mounted in a perfusion chamber on a fluorescence microscope and a set of digital fluorescence images was made. Then fluorescein-conjugated goat-anti-rabbit FAB'2 secondary antibodies were flowed over the monolayer, the perfusion chamber was washed with buffer, and a second set of digital fluorescence images was made. The difference of these two sets of images demonstrated intense fluorescence superimposed on the outline of the cells. This intense fluorescence was not observed in control experiments in which the primary antibodies were omitted.
View details for Web of Science ID A1994NG38700010
View details for PubMedID 8166745
Immunocytochemical studies have revealed that one of the major heat shock proteins, HSP72, is induced in livers of rats that have been pretreated with phenobarbital and then administered halothane in a hypoxic gas mixture of 10% oxygen. To determine the sub-cellular localization of HSP72 in the livers of these rats 24 hr after halothane administration, cytoplasmic and nuclear fractions were prepared and separated by PAGE electrophoresis. Western blotting with a mouse monoclonal anti-HSP70 IgG antibody, which recognizes both the constitutive (HSP73) and inducible (HSP72) forms, revealed that HSP72 was induced and translocated into the nucleus in only those rats exposed to halothane under hypoxia following phenobarbital pretreatment. Nuclear translocation of HSP72 under the latter conditions was confirmed by immunocytochemical staining using gold-conjugated secondary antibodies followed by digital laser microscopy with Nomarski optics. Neither phenobarbital pretreatment alone nor phenobarbital plus hypoxia treatment induced HSP72. No alteration in amount of HSP73 was observed under any of these conditions.
View details for Web of Science ID A1994NA91400032
View details for PubMedID 8135806
The delayed fulminant form of halothane hepatotoxicity is thought to be triggered by an immune response to haptenic adducts formed by a metabolite, trifluoroacetyl chloride. In this study we demonstrate that antibodies purified from the sera of rabbits sensitized to a trifluoroacetyl-protein adduct will cross-react with a trifluoroacetyl-phosphatidylethanolamine adduct. Trifluoroacetyl adducts of both rabbit serum albumin (TFA-RSA) and dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine (TFA-DOPE) were prepared. The TFA-RSA was coupled to an Affigel-10 affinity column to purify hapten-selective immunoglobulin (Ig) G antibodies (anti-TFA-RSA IgG) from the sera of rabbits given i.m. injections of TFA-RSA. The TFA-DOPE was purified by high-performance liquid chromatography and the structure confirmed with direct chemical ionization mass spectrometry. Lamellar liposomes containing a mixture of 5% TFA-DOPE, 71% DOPE and 24% dioleoyl-phosphatidylcholine, as well as hexagonal phase micelles containing 5% TFA-DOPE and 95% DOPE, were prepared by sonication. Anti-TFA-RSA IgG antibodies were added to each of these lipid mixtures for 30 min, fluorescein-conjugated goat-antirabbit IgG antibodies were added next for an additional 30 min and then binding of anti-TFA-RSA IgG antibodies to TFA-DOPE was quantified by flow cytometry. Anti-TFA-RSA IgG antibodies bound to TFA-DOPE only when it was incorporated into hexagonal phase micelles. These findings suggest that TFA-phosphatidylethanolamine adducts that reside in nonlamellar domains on the hepatocyte surface could be recognition sites for anti-TFA-adduct antibodies and potentially participate in immune-mediated hepatotoxicity.
View details for Web of Science ID A1991FM16100018
View details for PubMedID 2033512
We have previously shown that antibodies raised against acetaldehyde adducts of protein cross-react with an acetaldehyde adduct of dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine, N-ethyl-dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine, when the latter is incorporated into hexagonal phase phospholipid micelles. In the present study we demonstrate that these same IgG antibodies cross-react with N-ethyl-dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine when this adduct is incorporated into the surface of hepatocytes. Hapten-specific IgG antibodies were purified from the sera of rabbits sensitized to an albumin-acetaldehyde conjugate that had been reduced with sodium cyanoborohydride (N-ethyl-RSA). The N-ethyl-RSA was coupled to an Affi-Gel-10 column to affinity purify the IgG. Liposomes containing N-ethyl-dioleoylphosphatidylethanolamine were fused with isolated hepatocytes, the affinity purified primary IgG antibodies were added, then fluorescein-conjugated second antibodies were added, and antibody binding to hepatocytes was measured by flow cytometry. The fluorescence of these hepatocytes was significantly greater (p less than 0.01) than control hepatocytes prepared with (1) pre-immune primary IgG antibodies with fluorescein-conjugated second antibodies, (2) no primary antibody but with fluorescein-conjugated second antibodies, and (3) no fluorescein-conjugated second antibodies.
View details for Web of Science ID A1991FG76100027
View details for PubMedID 2058807
This study measured the possible cross-reactivity of hapten-specific IgG antibodies purified from the sera of rabbits sensitized to an albumin-acetaldehyde conjugate [N-ethyl-rabbit serum albumin (N-ethyl-RSA)] with acetaldehyde-phosphatidylethanolamine adducts. The N-ethyl-RSA was coupled to an Affigel-10 column to affinity purify the IgG (anti-N-ethyl-RSA IgG). Dioleoyl-phosphatidylethanolamine (DOPE) was reacted with acetaldehyde to form a Schiff base, which was reduced to N-ethyl-DOPE, purified by high pressure liquid chromatography, and analyzed with direct chemical ionization mass spectrometry. Lamellar liposomes containing either 5% by weight N-ethyl-DOPE and 95% egg phosphatidylcholine or a mixture of 5% N-ethyl-DOPE, 71% DOPE, and 24% dioleoylphosphatidylcholine, as well as hexagonal phase micelles containing 5% N-ethyl-DOPE and 95% DOPE, were prepared by sonication. Anti-N-ethyl-RSA IgG was then incubated with each of these lipid mixtures for 30 min, a fluorescein-conjugated goat anti-rabbit IgG was added for an additional 30 min, and then binding of anti-N-ethyl-RSA IgG to N-ethyl-DOPE in the liposomes or micelles was measured by flow cytometry. Anti-N-ethyl-RSA IgG bound to N-ethyl-DOPE in both vesicles and hexagonal phase micelles, but the affinity was 16 times greater for the hapten in the hexagonal phase. This result demonstrates that physical presentation of the hapten can affect antibody recognition and that antibodies raised against N-ethyl-RSA can cross-react with acetaldehyde-phospholipid adducts.
View details for Web of Science ID A1990EJ40900001
View details for PubMedID 2233695
Hepatocyte monolayer cultures were exposed to 6000 ppm styrene vapor at 20%, 2%, or 1% O2 and assayed for signs of cell damage immediately following the 2-hr exposure and then 24 hr later. Oxygen concentrations were used that were previously shown to maximize lipid peroxidation and to predispose hepatocyte monolayers to chemical injury. The use of two time points allowed assessment of acute injury as well as injury that requires several hours to manifest itself. The uptake of styrene into the buffer in the culture dishes was measured by gas chromatography and was found to be 0.49, 0.68, and 0.74 mM at 15, 60, and 120 min, respectively. However, as measured by release of aspartate aminotransferase and inclusion of trypan blue, no toxicity was evident at either time point, irrespective of the oxygen concentration. This study shows that despite the weakening of hepatocyte defense mechanisms by hypoxia, styrene is not acutely toxic to these cells. Furthermore, if any damage to DNA, RNA, or the capability for protein synthesis occurs during exposure to styrene, it is insufficient to cause lysis within 24 hr.
View details for Web of Science ID A1990DB83400026
View details for PubMedID 2351122
View details for Web of Science ID A1989AP07300004
The effect of a matrix of concentrations of Ca2+ (0.01, 0.1, 0.5, 5 mM), Mg2+ (0.2, 0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10 mM), and Na+ (50, 100, 150 mM) on the phosphorylation of histone H-1 by protein kinase C was measured in the presence of 5 mol % diacylglycerol and Mg-ATP in both phosphatidylserine micelles and liposomes formed from a 1:4 mixture of phosphatidylserine and phosphatidylcholine. Monovalent cations (150 mM) reduced activity by 60 and 84% in the micelle and liposome assay systems, respectively. Inhibition was also observed with 5 mM Ca2+ and 10 mM Mg2+. The phosphorylating activity was compared with computer calculations of the negative electrostatic potentials (psi o) of the phospholipid membranes in the presence of the cations.
View details for Web of Science ID A1989AE88500007
View details for PubMedID 2751662
The toxicity of carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) in monolayer cultures of primary hepatocytes was investigated at oxygen concentrations that prevail in the liver under conditions that range from normoxia to hypoxia: 0.5, 1, 2, and 20% O2. CCl4 was administered in the vapor phase at concentrations that produce aqueous concentrations at 37 degrees C of 0.4, 2.0, and 4.0 mM. Damage was assayed by leakage of aspartate transaminase and the inclusion of Trypan Blue immediately after the 2-hr incubation and after an additional 6-hr incubation in 20% O2. Only in the case of 0.5% O2 and 4 mM CCl4 were the monolayers damaged (18%) immediately after the 2-hr exposure; all other exposed cells were undamaged at that time point and the dose response of cell death as a function of CCl4 and oxygen concentration was not evident until the 6-hr time point. The monolayers exposed to 4 mM CCl4 and 1, 2, or 20% O2 exhibited little immediate damage but were all 100% dead 6 hr later. The monolayers exposed to 2 mM CCl4 and 0.5, 1, 2, or 20% O2 were 53, 48, 40, and 22 +/- 2% dead after 6 hr, respectively. These results suggest that effects of CCl4 exposure, for example alterations in the function or synthesis of essential proteins, require several hours to affect cell viability.
View details for Web of Science ID A1989U278400003
View details for PubMedID 2707381
SR 4233 (3-amino-1,2,4-benzotriazine-1,4-dioxide) is presently undergoing investigation as an antitumor agent because of its high selective toxicity for hypoxic cells in vitro and in vivo. It has been found to be 15 to 200 times more toxic to hypoxic rodent and human cell lines than their normoxic counterparts. We investigated the toxicity of SR 4233 in primary cultures of hepatocytes under various oxygen tensions, ranging from 1% to 20% oxygen. The 50% lethal dose of SR 4233 was found to be 50 times lower in hepatocyte monolayers at 1% O2 versus 20% O2. Even at 4% O2, a concentration that prevails in the pericentral area of the liver under conditions of normal blood flow, SR 4233 was an order of magnitude more toxic than at 20% O2. All samples were analyzed for metabolites, and metabolism was found to be dependent on both the SR 4233 concentration and the oxygen tension. Formation of the major metabolite SR 4317 occurred to the greatest extent at the lowest oxygen concentration and the highest SR 4233 concentration. Very little metabolism occurred at 10 to 20% O2, which is in agreement with data in Chinese hamster ovary cells under aerobic conditions.
View details for Web of Science ID A1989T082400029
View details for PubMedID 2912562
Rat hepatocyte homogenates convert 5-hydroperoxyeicosatetraenoic acid (5-HPETE) into biologically active leukotriene B4 (LTB4) as well as less active all-trans-LTB4 (i.e., 6-trans-LTB4 and 6-trans-12-epi-LTB4). Here, we present a hypothesis of the reaction mechanism and the minimal structural requirements of the active enzyme based on the following experimental evidence: The ED50 of the inhibitors 5,8,11,14-eicosatetraynoic acid (ETYA) and 5,6-dehydro-eicosatetraenoic acid was approximately 100-fold higher than for 5-lipoxygenase. Propanethiol and O2 were strong inhibitors of LTB4 formation, whereas butylated hydroxytoluene, nordihydroguaiaretic acid, metyrapone, Desferal and CO had no effect. Cytochrome c, catalase, hematin, and a Fe3+/Fe2+ couple, but not iron-free protoporphyrin IX, catalyzed the formation of only all-trans-LTB4. LTB4 formation in hepatocyte homogenates was heat- and trypsin-sensitive whereas all-trans-LTB4 formation was not. We propose that a ferric heme iron forms a ferryl-hydroxo complex upon homolytic scission of the oxygen-oxygen bond in 5-HPETE and the resulting 5,6-trans-epoxide radical is oxidized by the ferryl-hydroxo complex to yield LTA4. A mechanism for hydrolysis of LTA4 is described that results in formation of LTB4 (less than 1% yield) rather than all-trans-LTB4.
View details for Web of Science ID A1989AN94800008
View details for PubMedID 2550334
Hepatic 1,2-dibromoethane (DBE) metabolism proceeds via two pathways: oxidation by cytochrome P-450 and direct conjugation with the ubiquitous tripeptide glutathione (GSH) via the GSH S-transferases. The toxicity of DBE in monolayers of hepatocytes was assessed to establish whether the toxicity of this compound is increased under conditions of reductive metabolism at low oxygen concentrations. Our previous studies with t-butyl hydroperoxide and the calcium ionophore A23187 suggested that hypoxia would exacerbate toxicity that was mediated through lipid peroxidation or loss of calcium homeostasis. Monolayers of hepatocytes were exposed for 2 hr to 0, 14, 140, 1400, or 14,000 ppm of DBE in an atmosphere of either 1, 2, or 20% oxygen. Toxicity was measured by leakage of aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and trypan blue exclusion. The time course of the development of cytotoxicity was examined by assaying cell death both immediately following a 2-hr exposure and 24 hr later. The LC50 of DBE vapor was found to be approximately 14,000 ppm when assayed immediately after exposure but only 140 ppm when assayed 24 hr after exposure. The similarity of the percentages of DBE-induced cell death after incubations at 1, 2, and 20% oxygen demonstrates that the toxicity of DBE is oxygen-independent. We conclude that while DBE is highly toxic to rat hepatocytes, hypoxia does not appear to contribute to the toxicity of DBE, even under conditions of low oxygen concentrations. This result is in direct contrast to a previous report where we showed that the toxicity of halothane is potentiated under hypoxic conditions.
View details for Web of Science ID A1988Q264700007
View details for PubMedID 3138787
Rat hepatocyte homogenates converted 5-hydroperoxyeicosatetraenoic acid into leukotriene B4 (LTB4). The reaction was dependent on time and protein and substrate concentration, did not require NADPH or oxygen, and was not supported by heat-inactivated hepatocyte homogenates. The authenticity of the biologically generated LTB4 that eluted at the position of synthetic LTB4 during high performance liquid chromatography was established by UV spectrophotometry, mass spectral analysis, radioimmunoassay, and a LTB4 receptor displacement assay. In addition, a leukotriene bioassay is described in which transient increases in cytosolic Ca2+ within human neutrophils are measured by means of fura-2 fluorescence. Biologically generated LTB4 was 40, 40, and 33% as active as synthetic LTB4 in the radioimmunoassay, receptor displacement assay, and cytosolic calcium bioassay, respectively. This activity is consistent with the biologically derived LTB4 being an epimeric mixture of (5S),(12R)-LTB4 and the much less active (5S),(12S)-LTB4. The formation of LTB4 was inhibited by 5,8,11,14-eicosatetraynoic acid (1 mM), 5,6-dehydro-arachidonic acid (50 microM), propanethiol (1 mM), and O2 (100%) to the extent of 53, 42, 48, and 66%, respectively. No inhibition was observed in the presence of diethylcarbamazine (1 mM) and desferal (1 mM). A possible contribution towards LTB4 formation by contaminating Kupffer cells was excluded (less than 0.2%). These results suggest that hepatocytes can convert lipid peroxides into potent chemoattractants that may alter the homeostasis of immunomediators within the liver.
View details for Web of Science ID A1988Q219900004
View details for PubMedID 2843745
An improved direct chemical ionization (DCI) mass spectrometric technique, using a polyimide-coated fused silica fiber as an extended probe tip, was used to obtain molecular ions and diagnostic fragment ions of underivatized arachidonic acid, 5-hydroperoxyeicosatetraenoic acid, 15-hydroperoxyeicosatetraenoic acid, leukotriene B4 (LTB4) and, for the first time, of leukotriene A4 (LTA4)-free acid. In this technique, sample compounds are coated onto the fused silica fiber and vaporized in the plume of the reagent gas plasma of a chemical ionization source without external heating of the probe. Both ammonia and isobutane DCI spectra were obtained for each compound. A volatile alkaline eluent system was developed that allowed reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography of LTA4 to be followed rapidly by DCI mass spectrometry. With these techniques, the conversion of LTA4 to LTB4 during incubation with human liver microsomes was confirmed. Selected ion monitoring (SIM) of preselected ion fragments in the spectrum increases the selectivity of this technique and improves quantification in the range 100 ng to 10 pg.
View details for Web of Science ID A1988N198200007
View details for PubMedID 2838114
Hypoxia, phenobarbital induction, and halothane anesthesia have been implicated in the pathogenesis of hepatotoxicity in the rat model. However, a controversy exists over the role of halothane in liver injury; does it act by reducing hepatic blood flow, thereby inducing hypoxia, or do its metabolites initiate the injury? These variables are difficult to separate during in vivo halothane exposure. In the present experiments, effects of halothane on hepatic perfusion were eliminated by exposing confluent monolayers of hepatocytes isolated from Fisher 344 rats livers, both with and without phenobarbital pretreatment, to 1.5% halothane or 2.0% isoflurane in 1%, 2%, or 4% (control) oxygen. Isoflurane exposure was included for a control of anesthetic effects on hepatocytes, because it is known to be metabolized minimally and probably is not associated with hepatic dysfunction. Oxygen levels were chosen to approximate those that may occur in the liver in vivo. Cell death was assayed via aspartate aminotransferase (AST) release, both immediately following a 2-h oxygen +/- anesthetic exposure and 6 h post-exposure. Per cent cell death data were analyzed using multiple regression techniques. Results obtained immediately, and 6 h after, exposure demonstrate that low oxygen levels, halothane, and phenobarbital were each highly significant factors (P less than .001) in relation to cell death, in agreement with the halothane-phenobarbital-hypoxia rat model. A toxic effect of isoflurane was not observed under identical experimental conditions. The results of the study clearly indicate that the origin of cell death in hepatocyte monolayers is multi-factorial; hypoxia, phenobarbital induction, and halothane exposure each contribute to the hepatocyte damage observed in our in vitro model.
View details for Web of Science ID A1988M799800003
View details for PubMedID 3354886
View details for PubMedID 2854981
During a 2-min incubation of leukotriene A4 (LTA4) with human liver microsomes, 1.7 mol% was converted into leukotriene B4 (LTB4). The reaction was dependent on protein concentration, time, and substrate concentration, was not supported by heat-inactivated microsomes, and did not require NADPH. Kinetic analysis of the reaction revealed apparent Michaelis-Menten type behavior (app Km approximately 20 microM). Production rates varied widely among three patients examined. Piperonyl butoxide, propanethiol, and cyclohexene oxide (1 mM) inhibited LTB4 formation by microsomal LTA4-hydrolase by 52, 40, and 60%, respectively. The latter two compounds were shown not to inhibit cytosolic LTA4-hydrolase activity. The activity of microsomal and cytosolic LTA4-hydrolase was decreased in the presence of 100% O2 by 45 and 64%, respectively. Direct chemical ionization mass spectrometry was used to obtain a mass spectrum of 50 ng of underivatized synthetic LTB4 free acid and show that this spectrum is identical with that of 10 ng of the product isolated from LTA4 hydrolysis by human liver microsomes. The authenticity of the biologically generated LTB4 was confirmed by functional characterization in a receptor displacement assay. Displacement of [3H]LTB4 from the high affinity receptors of LTB4 on human neutrophils revealed KD50 values of 8.2 and 5.1 nM for human liver microsome derived and synthetic LTB4, respectively. The nearly two-fold higher KD50 of the microsomally generated LTB4 is suggested to result from an epimeric mixture of the active 5(S),12(R)- and the less active 5(S),12(S)-dihydroxy-6,14-cis-8,10-trans-eicosatetraenoic acid.
View details for Web of Science ID A1987L369000027
View details for PubMedID 2827578
Inasmuch as it is known that the toxicity of anesthetic agents is potentiated by hypoxia and that the reductive metabolism of these agents results in the formation of lipid hydroperoxides, we investigated the toxicity of hydroperoxides under low-oxygen concentrations. We found that hypoxia exacerbates the toxicity of t-butyl hydroperoxide, shifting the dose-response curve of t-butyl hydroperoxide vs. lysis of hepatocytes approximately an order of magnitude to the left. Furthermore, although at the end of a 4-h exposure to 0.5% O2 hepatocyte monolayers seemed normal by three indices (release of 51Cr and serum glutamate transaminase or exclusion of trypan blue), they were completely lysed after an additional 20 h reoxygenation at 20% O2. In contrast, monolayers exposed to 2% O2 for 4 h seemed normal after 20 h reoxygenation. However, cells exposed to both a subtoxic dose of hydroperoxide and 4 h of 2% O2, although seeming healthy at the end of the hypoxic period, were completely lysed within 20 h after reoxygenation.
View details for Web of Science ID A1987J496100007
View details for PubMedID 3610947
The peptide leukotrienes have been detected in animals that have received endotoxin injections and also have been associated with patients suffering from the adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). The ability of leukotriene D4 (LTD4) to cause pulmonary capillary permeability changes was investigated in ten anesthetized mongrel dogs. Four dogs were used as controls and six dogs received intravenous LTD4 (0.25 microgram/kg). There was a variable response in that two treated animals showed no apparent effect of LTD4. Analysis of the results from the remaining four treated animals demonstrated a significant increase in extravascular lung water (EVLW) that peaked 3 hr after LTD4 from 5.4 +/- 0.6 to 10.3 +/- 0.5 ml/kg (P less than .01). In these four dogs, EVLW increased before slight, but statistically significant, rises in pulmonary artery wedge pressure (4 +/- 1 to 9 +/- 1 mm Hg, P less than .01) and mean pulmonary artery pressure (13 +/- 1 to 17 +/- 1 mm Hg, P less than .01) occurred. During the same period, cardiac output decreased 56 +/- 7% (P less than .01), but no change in airway resistance was observed. This study is the first in vivo demonstration that LTD4 directly alters pulmonary fluid balance in the dog. We conclude LTD4 can cause increases in EVLW and may be an important mediator of the permeability changes observed in various clinical events that lead to the adult respiratory distress syndrome.
View details for Web of Science ID A1987G252100004
View details for PubMedID 3829327
We have suggested the use of ethyl acetate for extraction of hydroxyl or superoxide radical adducts of the spin trap phenyl N-tert-butyl nitrone (PBM). The technique produced EPR spectra with narrow line widths, the radical adducts were more stable, and there were sufficiently large differences between the isotropic nitrogen hyperfine coupling constant (alpha N) and the beta hydrogen coupling constant (alpha H beta) for both the hydroxyl and superoxide radical adducts to allow their simultaneous quantitation in mixtures. However, Kalyanaraman, Mottley, and Mason have suggested that our assignments of alpha N and alpha H beta were incorrect and that extraction of spin-trapped adducts into ethyl acetate is not as useful as we had proposed. This paper demonstrates that their objections are unfounded and are based on a computational error that they made when they attempted to calculate the hyperfine splittings in their spectra.
View details for Web of Science ID A1987J596300007
View details for PubMedID 2822545
Increased cytoplasmic calcium has been implicated in hepatic necrosis induced by cytochrome P-450-mediated halocarbon metabolism; hepatic necrosis is exacerbated hypoxia. It is known that addition of the calcium ionophore A23187 to a cell can mimic the metabolic causes of increased cytoplasmic calcium. In the present experiments, confluent monolayers of rat hepatocytes were exposed to A23187 (0.5-50 microM) under conditions of normoxia and 18-fold during a 4-h incubation at 0.5% (5 microM) O2 compared with 20% (212 microM) O2. The ED50 values of A23187 were 0.92, 1.84, 10.98, and 16.81 microM at 0.5, 1, 2, and 20% O2, respectively. The results demonstrate that small reductions in the oxygen concentrations normally encountered by pericentral hepatocytes (i.e., below 28 microM) may severely decrease the ability of these already compromised hepatocytes to manage perturbations in calcium homeostasis.
View details for Web of Science ID A1987F646400005
View details for PubMedID 3099427
This report describes the application of direct chemical ionization mass spectrometry (DCIMS) to the identification and quantification of 5- and 15-HPETEs. A unique feature of the method is use of a polyimide-coated fused silica fiber that allows vaporization of the hydroperoxides, with very low excess energy, into the plume of the chemical ionization reagent gas plasma. Mass spectra are obtained that allow identification of the nonreduced and nonderivatized free acid forms of 5- and 15-HPETE as well as their quantification from 1 microgram to 100 picograms.
View details for Web of Science ID A1987K947200005
View details for PubMedID 3319797
Leukotriene B4 was found to be metabolized by rat hepatocyte monolayers at a rate that was linear with increasing substrate concentration from 74 to 740 nM leukotriene B4. The rates of metabolism were dependent on the O2 concentration and were 315, 213, 80, and 36 pmol leukotriene B4 per min per nmol cytochrome P-450 at 20% (212 microM), 4% (42.5 microM), 2% (21.2 microM), and 1% (10.6 microM) O2, respectively. The metabolic rate was not linear with respect to O2 concentration; however, half maximal rate occurred at 4% O2, and O2 concentration found in the pericentral region of normally oxygenated liver. These results suggest that in vivo conditions of hypoxia or ischemia that lead to blood O2 concentrations less than 4% may drastically decrease hepatic clearance of leukotriene B4.
View details for Web of Science ID A1986D975600008
View details for PubMedID 3019410
The authors are studying the molecular details of the process that begins with hepatic metabolism of halogenated inhalation anesthetics and ends with hepatic necrosis. In previous studies they have shown that the halothane-free radical produced by UV-irradiation is identical to that produced during reductive metabolism of halothane by hepatic cytochrome P-450. In the present study, the authors have examined a mechanism by which free radicals may propagate damage in the endoplasmic reticulum of liver cells. The 1-chloro-2,2,2-trifluoroethyl free radical produced by UV-irradiation of halothane can abstract a hydrogen radical from arachidonic acid to yield 2-chloro-1,1,1-trifluoroethane and an arachidonic acid-free radical. The arachidonic acid-free radical reacts with molecular oxygen to form 5- and 15-hydroperoxyeicosatetraenoic acid. There is considerable evidence that the peroxidation process that we studied in the model system will be similar when the arachidonic acid is an acyl chain on a membrane phospholipid and the free radicals are generated metabolically. The authors suggest that these hydroperoxides may be toxic by acting as intermediates in the pathway of leukotriene production as well as by direct oxidation of membrane components.
View details for Web of Science ID A1984SF27400007
View details for PubMedID 6696254
Potentiation of chemical toxicity by hypoxia was studied in confluent hepatocyte monolayers. Addition of either hydroperoxyarachidonic acid (50 micrograms), leukotriene C4 (10 micrograms), or calcium ionophore A23187 (1.8 micrograms) to hepatocyte monolayers followed by incubation in 2% oxygen for 24 h killed 95% of the hypoxic cells, but was without effect on the normoxic cells. The greater than 10-fold increase in toxicity of A23187 suggests that hypoxic cells are less able to regulate intracellular calcium. The increased toxicity of hydroperoxyarachidonic acid and leukotriene C4 may be due to a related reduction in activity of protective enzymes.
View details for Web of Science ID A1984SN63900017
View details for PubMedID 6322862
Hydrolysis of 5-hydroperoxyeicosatetraenoic acid catalyzed by cytochrome P-450 in the absence of NADPH formed a product with spectral and HPLC characteristics identical with those of leukotriene B4, 5(S),12(R)-dihydroxy-6-cis,8,10-trans,14-cis-eicosatetraenoic acid (LTB4). The product mixture suggests that trans-5,6-oxido-7,9-trans,11,14-cis-eicosatetraenoic acid, leukotriene A4 (LTA4) is an intermediate in the reaction. We suggest that the formation of LTB4 with the essential 6-cis stereochemistry is due to tight binding of the 5-HPETE to the cytochrome P-450 at a site that does not allow it to isomerize to the kinetically favored 6,8,10-trans configuration during attack of hydroxyl ion at C-12.
View details for Web of Science ID A1983RL52600033
View details for PubMedID 6313004
Leukotriene B4 (LTB) was found to be metabolized by suspensions of rat liver microsomes in the presence of NADPH and oxygen. The rate of LTB metabolism was also measured in reconstituted systems of both micelles and phospholipid vesicles containing cytochrome P-450-LM2, NADPH cytochrome P-450 reductase, and cytochrome b5. A 1 microM concentration of LTB was metabolized by rat hepatic microsomes at a rate of 4 pmol LTB/min/nmole P-450, and by vesicle and micelle reconstituted systems at 3 pmole/min/nmole P-450-LM2. At this rate a 10 g rat liver exposed to 1 microM LTB can metabolize 30 micrograms per hour. In that the leukotrienes are pharmacologically active at nanomolar concentrations, hepatic metabolism may be an important pathway of leukotriene inactivation.
View details for Web of Science ID A1983RB89500062
View details for PubMedID 6309181
The rate of transfer of spin-labeled phospholipid from donor vesicles of sonicated 1-acyl-2-(10-doxylstearoyl)-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine to other vesicle was determined as a function of content of cytochrome P-450 and the phosphatidylcholine/phosphatidylethanolamine ratio in the acceptor vesicles. The transfer rate was measured as an increase in intensity that resulted from a decrease in the line width in the EPR spectrum of the spin-labeled phospholipids as they was transferred to the nonspin-labeled acceptor vesicles. A lower transfer rate was observed for acceptor vesicles of pure egg phosphatidylcholine vesicles than for vesicles for a mixture of phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylethanolamine. The presence of cytochrome P-450 in the acceptor vesicles further increased the transfer rate. Those alterations in the mole ratios of the protein and the two phospholipids that made the bilayer of the reconstituted vesicles more like the membrane of the endoplasmic reticulum resulted in an increase in phospholipid-transfer rate. The mole ratios of components that produce high phospholipid-transfer rates were similar to those that in an earlier study produced a 31P-NMR spectrum characteristic of a nonbilayer phase. These findings suggest that, in the membrane of the endoplasmic reticulum, phospholipid exchange may be an important element in function and interaction with other intracellular organelles.
View details for Web of Science ID A1982PA44500018
View details for PubMedID 6285973
It has been proposed that covalent binding of reactive metabolites to liver membrane constituents may be responsible for the hepatoxicity of carbon tetrachloride. This study demonstrates that trichloromethyl free radical is the major reductive metabolite of carbon tetrachloride by cytochrome P-450 and that this free radical is capable of binding to double bonds of fatty acyl chains of the phospholipids in the membrane surrounding cytochrome P-450. The structural identification of the reactive free radical metabolite and the product of its addition to phospholipids was accomplished by use of a reconstituted system of human cytochromes P-450, NADPH-cytochrome P-450 reductase, and cytochrome b5 in phospholipid vesicles. The reconstituted vesicles contained a mixture of dioleoyl phosphatidylcholine and egg phosphatidylethanolamine that served as both structural components and targets for trichloromethyl free radical binding. After incubation of these vesicles under a N2 atmosphere in the presence of NADPH with 14CCl4, the phospholipids were extracted and then separated by high-pressure liquid chromatography. The dioleoyl phosphatidylcholine fraction was transesterified and the resulting single 14C-labeled fatty acid methyl ester was purified by reverse-phase chromatography. Desorption chemical ionization mass spectrometry with ammonia as reagent gas as well as desorption electron-impact mass spectrometry permitted identification of the molecular structure as a mixture of 9- and 10-(trichloromethyl)stearate methyl esters.
View details for Web of Science ID A1982NL32300054
View details for PubMedID 6953422
A protein-protein association of cytochrome P-450 LM2 with NADPH-cytochrome P-450 reductase, with cytochrome b5, and with both proteins was demonstrated in reconstituted phospholipid vesicles by magnetic circular dichroism difference spectra. A 23% decrease in the absolute intensity of the Soret band of the magnetic CD spectrum of cytochrome P-450 was observed when it was reconstituted with reductase. A difference spectrum corresponding to a 7% decrease in absolute intensity was obtained when cytochrome b5 was incorporated into vesicles that already contained cytochrome P-450 and cytochrome P-450 reductase compared to a decrease of 13% in absolute intensity when cytochrome b5 was incorporated into vesicles that contained only cytochrome P-450. The use of the magnetic circular dichroism confirmed that protein-protein associations that have been detected by absorption spectroscopy between purified and detergent-solubilized proteins also exist in membranes. High ionic strength was shown to interrupt direct electron flow from cytochrome P-450 reductase to cytochrome P-450 but not the electron flow from reductase through cytochrome b5 to cytochrome P-450. Upon incorporation of cytochrome b5 into cytochrome P-450- and cytochrome P-450 reductase-containing vesicles, an increase of benzphetamine N-demethylation activity was observed. The magnitude of this increase was numerically identical to the residual activity of the reconstituted vesicles measured in the presence of 0.3 M KCl. It is concluded that there is a requirement for at least one charge pairing for electron transfer from reductase to cytochrome P-450. These observations are combined in a proposed mechanism of coupled reversible association reactions in the membrane.
View details for Web of Science ID A1982NN57300023
View details for PubMedID 6802841
Activation or inhibition by cytochrome b5 of benzphetamine N-demethylation was studied in micelle-reconstituted systems containing cytochrome P-450 LM2, NADPH-cytochrome P-450 reductase, and dilauroyl-phosphatidylcholine. The effects of cytochrome b5 were critically dependent on both protein:protein and lipid:protein ratios. A 200% stimulation of N-demethylation by cytochrome b5 was obtained at cytochrome P-450 reductase:cytochrome P-450 ratios similar to those in microsomes, compared to only a 20% stimulation at a ratio of 1:1. At lipid:protein ratios less than 50:1, the addition of cytochrome b5 caused significant inhibition of benzphetamine N-demethylation. Such an inhibition could be partially reversed by increasing phospholipid content of micelles and was not seen in vesicle-reconstituted systems at cytochrome b5:cytochrome P-450 ratios of 1:1 or lower. At high cytochrome P-450 reductase:cytochrome P-450 ratios, addition of cytochrome b5 did not alter the efficiency (80%) with which NADPH was utilized: however, at ratios similar to those in microsomes, an increase in efficiency from 42% to 80% was observed. The function of cytochrome b5 was interpreted in terms of a model in which inhibition of cytochrome P-450-mediated reactions results from changes in phospholipid-protein interactions and activation occurs via facilitation of electron transfer between NADPH-cytochrome P-450 reductase and cytochrome P-450 in the membrane.
View details for Web of Science ID A1982NM36300059
View details for PubMedID 6802829
Binding of halothane metabolites to rat liver histones was investigated after in vivo administration of 14C-halothane. Animals were injected with either a mixture of triiodothyronine, glucagon and heparin (TGH) to stimulate liver growth or with saline as a control. Twenty-four hours later, animals were administered 14C-halothane and maintained at 8--10 per cent O2 for 6 hours. Detergent washed nuclei from liver homogenates were subfractionated to allow quantitative measurements of 14C-halothane binding to histones. Although our studies suggest that much of the previously reported binding of halothane metabolites to major cell fractions was a result of redistribution of endoplasmic reticulum components during isolation procedures, carefully controlled experiments demonstrated that the radioactivity associated with histones could not be due to residual microsomal lipid. Of the initial 132 mumol of 14C-halothane administered, 1.1 mumol remained as nonvolatile metabolites in the liver homogenate and 25 pmol were associated with purified histones. This corresponds to approximately one halothane moiety per 15,000 histone molecules. No significant binding to liver cell RNA or DNA was observed. With this low level of histone modification and lack of convincing evidence of halothane metabolite binding to hepatic DNA or RNA, it is unlikely that significant alteration of the genome occurs after exposure to halothane.
View details for Web of Science ID A1981LJ22600008
View details for PubMedID 7212329
The effect of 100 atm pressure on the organization of the lipid-peptide complex formed between polymyxin and dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid has been investigated. Phase transition curves were obtained by electron paramagnetic resonance by measuring the partition coefficient of the spin label, 2, 2, 5, 5-tetramethylpiperidine-N-oxyl. The three-step phase transition curve previously obtained with fluorescence polarization measurements was confirmed, demonstrating three distinct phosphatidic acid domains in the bilayer. Pressure increases binding of polymyxin to phosphatidic acid bilayers and alters the proportions of the two domains that differ in the mode of binding between phosphatidic acid and polymyxin. The binding curves of polymyxin to phosphatidic acid bilayers wre determined and it was shown that application of pressure reduces the cooperativity of the binding curve.
View details for Web of Science ID A1980KR25100006
View details for PubMedID 6254564
The phase transition temperature (Tt) of dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid multilamellar liposomes is depressed 10 degrees C by the inhalation anesthetic methoxyflurane at a concentration of 100 mmol/mol lipid. Application of 100 atm of helium pressure to pure phosphatidic acid liposomes increased Tt only 1.5 degrees C. However, application of 100 atm helium pressure to dipalmitoyl phosphatidic acid lipsomes containing 100 mmol methoxyflurane/mol lipid almost completely antagonized the effect of the anesthetic. A non-linear pressure effect is observed. In a previous study, a concentration of 60 mmol methoxyflurane/mol dipalmitoyl phosphatidylcholine depressed Tt only 1.5 degrees C, exhibiting a linear pressure effect. The completely different behavior in the charged membrane is best explained by extrusion of the anesthetic from the lipid phase.
View details for Web of Science ID A1980KC30100030
View details for PubMedID 7397157
Nitrous oxide labeled with a stable heavy nitrogen isotope was used for in-vitro studies of nitrous oxide metabolism in man and rat. At 5 per cent oxygen tension, which is comparable to normal oxygen tension in the intestine in vivo, each gram of intestinal contents during a 16-hr in-vitro incubation produced 47 +/- 13 nmol of molecular nitrogen for the rat and 103 +/- 17 nmol for man. Active reductive metabolism of nitrous oxide by intestinal contents was significantly inhibited by antibiotics and by 20 per cent oxygen tension. It is suggested that the reduction of nitrous oxide to nitrogen may proceed through a single-electron transfer process with formation of free radicals. Under these circumstances, metabolism of nitrous oxide could produce toxic intermediates, even thought the end-metabolite is inert.
View details for Web of Science ID A1980JC01900004
View details for PubMedID 7352639
The presence of two volatile halothane metabolites, 2-chloro-1,1,1-trifluoroethane (CF3CH2Cl) and 2-chloro-1,1-difluoroethylene (CF2CHCl), and a metabolite-decomposition product, 2-bromo-2-chloro-1,1-difluoroethylene (CF2CBrCl), were identified by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in exhaled gases of 16 patients anesthetized with halothane in nonrebreathing, semiclosed and totally closed anesthesia circuits. No significant differences in concentrations of CF3CH2Cl and CF2CHCl were found relative to the anesthesia circuits used. CF2CBrCl could not be identified in the expired gases of patients anesthetized with a nonrebreathing circuit (Bain), but was present in gases recovered from both semiclosed and totally closed circuits. Under totally closed-circuit rebreathing conditions, the concentration of CF2CBrCl increased to 4-5 ppm, indicating significant breakdown of halothane by the soda lime. Possible pathways for formation of the two metabolites and the metabolite-decomposition product are presented, as well as clinical implications of these findings.
View details for Web of Science ID A1979GF77900002
View details for PubMedID 760598
Studies on model phospholipid membranes have shown that general anesthetics and pressure exert opposing effects--anesthetics increase and high pressure decreases membrane fluidity. The present study extends these investigations to intact nerve membranes. The fluidity of the membranes of spin-labeled crayfish claw nerves was measured with electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. Nerves exposed to 5- or 10% ethanol showed a linear increase in membrane fluidity. In contrast, 100 ATA of helium pressure decreased nerve fluidity. Successive application of ethanol and pressure to the nerve produced opposing effects. The similarity of effects between model and nerve membranes supports the relevance of studies with model systems.
View details for Web of Science ID A1979GQ79500005
View details for PubMedID 223266
View details for Web of Science ID A1977DG49500047
Seeman and coworkers (Seeman, P. (1972) Pharmacol. Rev. 24, 583--655) calculated that anesthetic agents expand membrane volume ten times more than the van der Waals volume of the agent alone. Their calculation was based on the assumption that the thickness of the erythrocyte membrane expands at the same rate as the surface area. However, recent data on bilayer membranes demonstrate that an expansion of membrane surface area is accompanied by a decrease in membrane thickness. A reinterpretation of their erythrocyte area expansion data using an appropriate contraction of membrane thickness suggests the volume in a membrane occupied by anesthetic molecules is approximately equal to their van der Waals volume.
View details for Web of Science ID A1977EB35900019
View details for PubMedID 921966
This paper relates research on anesthetic effects on lipid membrane systems to mechanisms of neural function. A unitary theory of anesthesia based on anesthetic-induced changes in fluid-solid-phase separations in the lipid region of nerve membranes is presented. It is suggested that anesthetics act by fluidizing nerve membranes to a point where critical lipid regions no longer contain phase separations. As a consequence, the membranes are less able to facilitate the conformational changes in proteins that may be the basis for such membrane events as ion gating, synaptic transmitter release, and transmitter binding to receptors. It is proposed that the anesthetic-modified phase separation behavior of the membrane may alter neural function by a combination of the following effects: inhibition of conformational changes of intrinsic membrane proteins; prevention of the association of protein subunits to form polymeric ion channels; depression of transmitter release by preventing fusion of vesicles containing synaptic transmitter with the membrane of the presynaptic terminal.
View details for Web of Science ID A1977CR33600003
View details for PubMedID 12686
View details for PubMedID 1270706
View details for PubMedID 1027445
View details for Web of Science ID A1976BT69100054
Absorption and magnetic circular dichroism (MCD) spectra have been obtained for the ferrous carbonyl adducts of cytochromes P-450 and P-420 as well as synthetic model systems. Ferrous porphyrins with sodium methyl mercaptide and CO in benzene give MCD and absorption spectra which are almost identical to those of the natural enzyme, indicating that in P-450 a mercaptide serves as the fifth ligand in the ferrous carbonyl adduct. MCD spectra of models with either propyl mercaptan or N-methylimidazole as the axial ligand are identical with that of P-420. Thus, no unambiguous assignment of the axial ligand can be made in this case. The infrared stretching frequencies of ferrous porphyrin carbonyl complexes and the absorption spectrum of the CO adduct of Na[Fe1(meso-tetraphenylporphyrin dianion)] are consistent with the concept that in P-450 considerable electron density is transferred to the iron by the mercaptide ligand.
View details for Web of Science ID A1976BD04500002
View details for PubMedID 1061127
The molecular motion and distribution of the inhalation anesthetic halothane (2-bromo-2-chloro-1,1,1-trifluoroethane) in a phospholipid bilayer model nerve membrane preparation was studied using fluorine nuclear magnetic resonance. Bilayers containing stable free radicals at known depths were studied to measure possible localization of halothane within certain areas of the bilayer. Bilayer suspensions containing manganese ions in the aqueous phase were used to test the partition of halothane between the aqueous and lipid phases. It was found that halothane rapidly achieves complete exchange throughout the bilayer and the surrounding aqueous phase. The results provide experimental evidence against the formation of anesthetic clathrates hypothesized by Pauling and Miller in their theories of anesthesia.
View details for Web of Science ID A1976BH40900004
View details for PubMedID 1267886
The antagonism observed between pressure and anesthesia in intact animals suggests that pressure antagonism may be a promising criterion for identifying the effects of anesthetics which are important to loss of responsiveness. It is therefore of interest to compare the effects of pressure and anesthesia on conduction and on synaptic transmission, which have often been proposed as possible alternative cellular sites of anesthesia. The model used in this study is the isolated rat superior cervical ganglion. Helium pressure (35-103 atm) antagonized partial conduction block of the preganglionic nerve by halothane(0.5 and 1 mM). Helium pressure failed to antagonize the depressant effects of halothane (0.25-0.5 mM) on nicotinic transmission and of halothane or methoxyflurane (0.24 mM) on muscarinic transmission in the ganglion. Pressure itself severely depressed synaptic transmission and added to the depressant effects of the anesthetics. Conduction block as a possible cellular mechanism of anesthesia therefore meets the proposed criterion of pressure reversibility. In contrast, pressure does not antagonize anesthetic depression of excitatory synaptic transmission in the rat superior cervical ganglion.
View details for Web of Science ID A1975AX43900005
View details for PubMedID 171376
The urinary metabolites of halothane (2-bromo-2-chloro-1,1,1-trifluoroethane) were investigated in five individuals given trace doses (25 muCi), and in three individuals given large doses (1 mCi) of radioactively labeled 14C-halothane. The latter were donor subjects for heart transplant operations. Separation of the nonvolatile urinary metabolites of halothane was accomplished by chemical extraction, electrophoresis, ion-exchange and high-pressure liquid chromatography, and gas chromatography. Identification of the individual metabolites was by nuclear magnetic resonance and mass spectrometry. Three major metabolites were identified: trifluoroacetic acid, N-trifluoroacetyl-2-aminoethanol, and N-acetyl-S-(2-bromo-2-chloro-1,1-difluoroethyl)-L-cysteine. Smaller unidentified radioactive peaks were also found. The presence of both ethanolamide and cysteine conjugates of halothane is of concern. These urinary products imply the presence of reactive intermediates. The conjugation of such intermediates to proteins and phospholipids may give rise to the high-molecular-weight covalently bound metabolites demonstrated to be present in the liver following halothane anesthesia. Elucidation of the structures of the urinary metabolites provides information important to an understanding of halothane metabolism and its potential hepatotoxicity.
View details for Web of Science ID A1975AS59100004
View details for PubMedID 1101753
View details for PubMedID 1091371
Several workers have shown that phase transition-related changes in membrane lipids have a profound effect on membrane-solvated protein function. This phase transition temperature dependence has been explained as resulting from the formation of lateral phase separations within the membrane bilayer. The present study demonstrates that a clinical concentration of an inhalation anesthetic produces changes in both the phase transition temperature of pure lipid bilayers and the lateral phase separation temperature of mixed dipalmitoyl- and dimyristoylphosphatidylcholine bilayers of a magnitude sufficient to influence protein function. It is further shown that pressure is able to antagonize the effect of the anesthetic on these transition temperatures. It is proposed that anesthetic action within nerve membranes may be the result of changes in the lateral phase separation-controlled environment of the membrane-solvated proteins essential to nerve function.
View details for Web of Science ID A1975V479600046
View details for PubMedID 164016
View details for PubMedID 4851573
The application of magnetic circular dichroism as an optical probe for simultaneous identification and determination of at least two microsomal cytochromes is demonstrated. The assignments of the bands in the spectra of microsomal suspensions are made from the spectra of soluble preparations of cytochrome P-450 obtained from Pseudomonas putida and of cytochrome b(5) obtained from rat livers.
View details for Web of Science ID A1974S385200037
Cytochromes P-450 and P-448 in microsomal suspensions have been shown to be spectrally distinct by magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopy. Furthermore, this technique can be used to measure induction of these two cytochromes by phenobarbital and 3-methyl-cholanthrene. Magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopy is thus at least as useful as difference spectroscopy for the investigation of P-450 and P-448 and more informative because the presence of cytochrome b(5) and hemoglobin can be detected concurrently. We have also shown that the molar magnetic ellipticity for reduced + CO treated cytochrome P-450 of Pseudomonas grown on camphor is of similar value to that of reduced + CO treated microsomal P-450 and P-448.
View details for Web of Science ID A1974U850600071
View details for PubMedID 4531003
View details for Web of Science ID A1970G413600006
View details for Web of Science ID 000316074306211
View details for Web of Science ID 000304806002597
View details for Web of Science ID 000239919900468
View details for Web of Science ID 000239919900070