Gating in CNGA1 channels

  • Monica Mazzolini
  • Arin Marchesi
  • Alejandro Giorgetti
  • Vincent Torre
Ion Channels, Receptors and Transporters


The aminoacid sequences of CNG and K+ channels share a significant sequence identity, and it has been suggested that these channels have a common ancestral 3D architecture. However, K+ and CNG channels have profoundly different physiological properties: indeed, K+ channels have a high ionic selectivity, their gating strongly depends on membrane voltage and when opened by a steady depolarizing voltage several K+ channels inactivate, whereas CNG channels have a low ion selectivity, their gating is poorly voltage dependent, and they do not desensitize in the presence of a steady concentration of cyclic nucleotides that cause their opening. The purpose of the present review is to summarize and recapitulate functional and structural differences between K+ and CNG channels with the aim to understand the gating mechanisms of CNG channels.


Gating Ion channels CNGA1 channels 



We thank Mrs. M. Lough for checking the English. This work was supported by a COFIN grant from the Italian Ministry, a grant from CIPE (GRAND FVG), a FIRB grant RBLA03AF28 007 from MIUR, and the SMD Contract n.229375 (FP7-NMP-2008-SMALL-1) from the EU.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Monica Mazzolini
    • 1
    • 2
  • Arin Marchesi
    • 2
  • Alejandro Giorgetti
    • 3
  • Vincent Torre
    • 2
  1. 1.CBM S.c.r.lBasovizza (TS)Italy
  2. 2.Neurobiology SectorInternational School for Advanced StudiesBasovizza (TS)Italy
  3. 3.Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Mathematical, Physical and Natural SciencesUniversity of VeronaVeronaItaly

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