Ion transport

Ion transport is the movement of ions across a membrane, passively through ion channels or actively through ion pumps such as symporters and antiporters.

Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research
    | Open Access

    The venom of Latrodectus spiders contains seven Latrotoxins (LaTXs), among them α-latrocrustatoxin (LCT) and δ- latroinsectotoxins δ-LIT. LaTXs bind to specific receptors on the surface of neuronal cells and target the molecular exocytosis machinery. Here, the authors present the cryo-EM structure of the α-LCT monomer and the δ-LIT dimer, which reveal that LaTXs are organized in four domains and they discuss the potential oligomerisation mechanism that takes place before LaTXs membrane insertion. Both recombinant α-LCT and δ-LIT form channels in artificial membrane bilayers, that are stabilized by Ca2+ ions.

    • Minghao Chen
    • , Daniel Blum
    •  & Christos Gatsogiannis
  • Research
    | Open Access

    Rühl et al. report the generation of ratiometric genetically encoded voltage indicators (GEVIs) and establish that they can be used in high-throughput automated imaging to measure compound membrane potential (Vm) in mammalian cells. This method is implementable with standard fluorescence microscopes and has the potential to offer insights into the role of the resting Vm in health and disease.

    • Philipp Rühl
    • , Johanna M. Langner
    •  & Stefan H. Heinemann
  • Research
    | Open Access

    Berberine is a compound with glucose-lowering effects in mice and humans. Here, the authors show that in mice berberine has beneficial glycemic effects by promoting insulin secretion, which requires the potassium channel KCNH6 in beta cells, and that berberine can promote insulin secretion in healthy men in a phase 1 clinical trial.

    • Miao-Miao Zhao
    • , Jing Lu
    •  & Jin-Kui Yang
  • Research
    | Open Access

    Volume-regulated anion channels (VRACs) are heteromers of LRRC8 proteins, all containing the obligatory subunit LRRC8A. Here, the authors develop and characterize nanobodies that bind LRRC8A and allosterically modulate the function of homomeric LRRC8A and endogenous heteromeric channels, hinting at functional mechanisms present in VRACs.

    • Dawid Deneka
    • , Sonja Rutz
    •  & Raimund Dutzler
  • Research
    | Open Access

    KdpFABC is a high-affinity bacterial K+ pump which combines the ion channel-like KdpA and the P-type ATPase KdpB. Here, the authors elucidate the mechanisms underlying transport and the coupling to ATP hydrolysis, and provide evidence that ions are transported via an intersubunit tunnel through KdpA and KdpB.

    • Jakob M. Silberberg
    • , Robin A. Corey
    •  & Inga Hänelt

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