2015 - Biochim Biophys Acta 1848(4):1005-13.

Multiple effects of anthracene-9-carboxylic acid on the TMEM16B/anoctamin2 calcium-activated chloride channel

Cherian OL, Menini A, Boccaccio A.


Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) currents (CaCCs) play important roles in many physiological processes. Recent studies have shown that TMEM16A/anoctamin1 and TMEM16B/anoctamin2 constitute CaCCs in several cell types. Here we have investigated for the first time the extracellular effects of the Cl(-) channel blocker anthracene-9-carboxylic acid (A9C) and of its non-charged analogue anthracene-9-methanol (A9M) on TMEM16B expressed in HEK 293T cells, using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique. A9C caused a voltage-dependent block of outward currents and inhibited a larger fraction of the current as depolarization increased, whereas the non-charged A9M produced a small, not voltage dependent block of outward currents. A similar voltage-dependent block by A9C was measured both when TMEM16B was activated by 1.5 and 13μM Ca(2+). However, in the presence of 1.5μM Ca(2+) (but not in 13μM Ca(2+)), A9C also induced a strong potentiation of tail currents measured at -100mV after depolarizing voltages, as well as a prolongation of the deactivation kinetics. On the contrary, A9M did not produce potentiation of tail currents, showing that the negative charge is required for potentiation. Our results provide the first evidence that A9C has multiple effects on TMEM16B and that the negative charge of A9C is necessary both for voltage-dependent block and for potentiation. Future studies are required to identify the molecular mechanisms underlying these complex effects of A9C on TMEM16B. Understanding these mechanisms will contribute to the elucidation of the structure and functional properties of TMEM16B channels.


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