The Cerebellum

, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 323–333

The Role of Kv3-type Potassium Channels in Cerebellar Physiology and Behavior


DOI: 10.1007/s12311-009-0098-4

Cite this article as:
Joho, R.H. & Hurlock, E.C. Cerebellum (2009) 8: 323. doi:10.1007/s12311-009-0098-4


Different subunits of the Kv3 subfamily of voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels (Kv3.1–Kv3.4) are expressed in distinct neuronal subpopulations in the cerebellum. Behavioral phenotypes in Kv3-null mutant mice such as ataxia with prominent hypermetria and heightened alcohol sensitivity are characteristic of cerebellar dysfunction. Here, we review how the unique biophysical properties of Kv3-type potassium channels, fast activation and fast deactivation that enable cerebellar neurons to generate brief action potentials at high frequencies, affect firing patterns and influence cerebellum-mediated behavior.


Kv3 subfamilyPotassium channelsCerebellumMotor dysfunctionPurkinje cell

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of NeuroscienceThe University of Texas Southwestern Medical CenterDallasUSA