Ion selectivity predictions from a two-site permeation model for the cyclic nucleotide-gated channel of retinal rod cells. Academic Article uri icon


  • We developed a two-site, Eyring rate theory model of ionic permeation for cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGCs). The parameters of the model were optimized by simultaneously fitting current-voltage (IV) data sets from excised photoreceptor patches in electrolyte solutions containing one or more of the following ions: Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, and K+. The model accounted well for 1) the shape of the IV relations; 2) the binding affinity for Na+; 3) reversal potential values with single-sided additions of Ca2+ or Mg2+ and biionic KCl; and 4) the K1 and voltage dependence for divalent block from the cytoplasmic side of the channel. The differences between the predicted K1's for extracellular block by Ca2+ and Mg2+ and the values obtained from heterologous expression of only the alpha-subunit of the channel suggest that the beta-subunit or a cell-specific factor affects the interaction of divalent cations at the external but not the internal face of the channel. The model predicts concentration-dependent permeability ratios with single-sided addition of Ca2+ and Mg2+ and anomalous mole fraction effects under a limited set of conditions for both monovalent and divalent cations. Ca2+ and Mg2+ are predicted to carry 21% and 10%, respectively, of the total current in the retinal rod cell at -60 mV.

published proceedings

  • Biophys J

author list (cited authors)

  • Wells, G. B., & Tanaka, J. C.

citation count

  • 19

complete list of authors

  • Wells, GB||Tanaka, JC

publication date

  • January 1997