Publications by authors named "Anruo Zou"

23 Publications

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A bivalent antihypertensive vaccine targeting L-type calcium channels and angiotensin AT receptors.

Br J Pharmacol 2020 01 12;177(2):402-419. Epub 2019 Dec 12.

Department of Cardiology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China.

Background And Purpose: Hypertension has been the leading preventable cause of premature death worldwide. The aim of this study was to design a more efficient vaccine against novel targets for the treatment of hypertension.

Experimental Approach: The epitope CE12, derived from the human L-type calcium channel (Ca 1.2), was designed and conjugated with Qβ bacteriophage virus-like particles to test the efficacy in hypertensive animals. Further, the hepatitis B core antigen (HBcAg)-CE12-CQ10 vaccine, a bivalent vaccine based on HBcAg virus-like particles and targeting both human angiotensin AT receptors and Ca 1.2 channels, was developed and evaluated in hypertensive rodents.

Key Results: The Qβ-CE12 vaccine effectively decreased the BP in hypertensive rodents. A monoclonal antibody against CE12 specifically bound to L-type calcium channels and inhibited channel activity. Injection with monoclonal antibody against CE12 effectively reduced the BP in angiotensin II-induced hypertensive mice. The HBcAg-CE12-CQ10 vaccine showed antihypertensive effects in hypertensive mice and relatively superior antihypertensive effects in spontaneously hypertensive rats and ameliorated L-NAME-induced renal injury. In addition, no obvious immune-mediated damage or electrophysiological adverse effects were detected.

Conclusion And Implications: Immunotherapy against both AT receptors and Ca 1.2 channels decreased the BP in hypertensive rodents effectively and provided protection against hypertensive target organ damage without obvious feedback activation of renin-angiotensin system or induction of dominant antibodies against the carrier protein. Thus, the HBcAg-CE12-CQ10 vaccine may provide a novel and promising therapeutic approach for hypertension.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.14875DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6989956PMC
January 2020

Electrophysiological characterization of a small molecule activator on human ether-a-go-go-related gene (hERG) potassium channel.

J Pharmacol Sci 2019 Jul 14;140(3):284-290. Epub 2019 Aug 14.

Department of Pharmacology, Qingdao University School of Pharmacy, 38 Dengzhou Road, Qingdao, 266021, China. Electronic address:

The human ether-a-go-go-related gene (hERG) encodes the K channel that carries the rapid component of the delayed rectifier current in the human heart. Reduction of hERG activity induced by gene mutations or pharmacological inhibition is responsible for the type 2 form of long QT syndrome in patients which can develop into ventricular arrhythmia and sudden cardiac death. Therefore, pharmacological activation of hERG may lead to therapeutic potential for cardiac arrhythmias. In this study we characterized a small and novel compound, N-(2-(tert-butyl)phenyl)-6-(4-chlorophenyl)-4-(trifluoromethyl) nicotinamide, HW-0168, that exhibits potent activation of hERG channel with an EC of 0.41 ± 0.2 μM. Using whole-cell patch clamp recording of HEK293 cells stably expressed hERG channels, we found that HW-0168 dramatically increased current amplitude about 2.5 folds and slowed down current inactivation about 4 folds. HW-0168 shifted the voltage-dependent channel activation to hyperpolarizing direction about 3.7 mV and the voltage-dependent channel inactivation to depolarizing direction about 9.4 mV. In addition, recording of guinea-pig ventricular cells confirmed that HW-0168 shortened the action potential duration. In conclusion, we identified a novel hERG channel activator HW-0168 that can be used for studying the physiological role of hERG in cardiac myocytes and may be beneficial for treating long QT syndrome.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jphs.2019.08.001DOI Listing
July 2019

Discovery of Tarantula Venom-Derived Na1.7-Inhibitory JzTx-V Peptide 5-Br-Trp24 Analogue AM-6120 with Systemic Block of Histamine-Induced Pruritis.

J Med Chem 2018 11 22;61(21):9500-9512. Epub 2018 Oct 22.

Therapeutic Discovery, Amgen Research , Amgen Inc. , 1120 Veterans Blvd , South San Francisco , California 94080 , United States.

Inhibitors of the voltage-gated sodium channel Na1.7 are being investigated as pain therapeutics due to compelling human genetics. We previously identified Na1.7-inhibitory peptides GpTx-1 and JzTx-V from tarantula venom screens. Potency and selectivity were modulated through attribute-based positional scans of native residues via chemical synthesis. Herein, we report JzTx-V lead optimization to identify a pharmacodynamically active peptide variant. Molecular docking of peptide ensembles from NMR into a homology model-derived Na1.7 structure supported prioritization of key residues clustered on a hydrophobic face of the disulfide-rich folded peptide for derivatization. Replacing Trp24 with 5-Br-Trp24 identified lead peptides with activity in electrophysiology assays in engineered and neuronal cells. 5-Br-Trp24 containing peptide AM-6120 was characterized in X-ray crystallography and pharmacokinetic studies and blocked histamine-induced pruritis in mice after subcutaneous administration, demonstrating systemic Na1.7-dependent pharmacodynamics. Our data suggests a need for high target coverage based on plasma exposure for impacting in vivo end points with selectivity-optimized peptidic Na1.7 inhibitors.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jmedchem.8b00736DOI Listing
November 2018

Pharmacological characterization of potent and selective NaV1.7 inhibitors engineered from Chilobrachys jingzhao tarantula venom peptide JzTx-V.

PLoS One 2018 3;13(5):e0196791. Epub 2018 May 3.

Therapeutic Discovery, Amgen Discovery Research, Thousand Oaks, California, United States of America.

Identification of voltage-gated sodium channel NaV1.7 inhibitors for chronic pain therapeutic development is an area of vigorous pursuit. In an effort to identify more potent leads compared to our previously reported GpTx-1 peptide series, electrophysiology screening of fractionated tarantula venom discovered the NaV1.7 inhibitory peptide JzTx-V from the Chinese earth tiger tarantula Chilobrachys jingzhao. The parent peptide displayed nominal selectivity over the skeletal muscle NaV1.4 channel. Attribute-based positional scan analoging identified a key Ile28Glu mutation that improved NaV1.4 selectivity over 100-fold, and further optimization yielded the potent and selective peptide leads AM-8145 and AM-0422. NMR analyses revealed that the Ile28Glu substitution changed peptide conformation, pointing to a structural rationale for the selectivity gains. AM-8145 and AM-0422 as well as GpTx-1 and HwTx-IV competed for ProTx-II binding in HEK293 cells expressing human NaV1.7, suggesting that these NaV1.7 inhibitory peptides interact with a similar binding site. AM-8145 potently blocked native tetrodotoxin-sensitive (TTX-S) channels in mouse dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons, exhibited 30- to 120-fold selectivity over other human TTX-S channels and exhibited over 1,000-fold selectivity over other human tetrodotoxin-resistant (TTX-R) channels. Leveraging NaV1.7-NaV1.5 chimeras containing various voltage-sensor and pore regions, AM-8145 mapped to the second voltage-sensor domain of NaV1.7. AM-0422, but not the inactive peptide analog AM-8374, dose-dependently blocked capsaicin-induced DRG neuron action potential firing using a multi-electrode array readout and mechanically-induced C-fiber spiking in a saphenous skin-nerve preparation. Collectively, AM-8145 and AM-0422 represent potent, new engineered NaV1.7 inhibitory peptides derived from the JzTx-V scaffold with improved NaV selectivity and biological activity in blocking action potential firing in both DRG neurons and C-fibers.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0196791PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5933747PMC
August 2018

Single Residue Substitutions That Confer Voltage-Gated Sodium Ion Channel Subtype Selectivity in the NaV1.7 Inhibitory Peptide GpTx-1.

J Med Chem 2016 Mar 10;59(6):2704-17. Epub 2016 Mar 10.

Therapeutic Discovery and ‡Neuroscience, Amgen Inc. , One Amgen Center Drive, Thousand Oaks, California 91320, United States.

There is interest in the identification and optimization of new molecular entities selectively targeting ion channels of therapeutic relevance. Peptide toxins represent a rich source of pharmacology for ion channels, and we recently reported GpTx-1 analogs that inhibit NaV1.7, a voltage-gated sodium ion channel that is a compelling target for improved treatment of pain. Here we utilize multi-attribute positional scan (MAPS) analoging, combining high-throughput synthesis and electrophysiology, to interrogate the interaction of GpTx-1 with NaV1.7 and related NaV subtypes. After one round of MAPS analoging, we found novel substitutions at multiple residue positions not previously identified, specifically glutamic acid at positions 10 or 11 or lysine at position 18, that produce peptides with single digit nanomolar potency on NaV1.7 and 500-fold selectivity against off-target sodium channels. Docking studies with a NaV1.7 homology model and peptide NMR structure generated a model consistent with the key potency and selectivity modifications mapped in this work.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jmedchem.5b01947DOI Listing
March 2016

Sustained inhibition of the NaV1.7 sodium channel by engineered dimers of the domain II binding peptide GpTx-1.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2015 Nov 16;25(21):4866-4871. Epub 2015 Jun 16.

Therapeutic Discovery, Amgen Inc., One Amgen Center Drive, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320, USA.

Many efforts are underway to develop selective inhibitors of the voltage-gated sodium channel NaV1.7 as new analgesics. Thus far, however, in vitro selectivity has proved difficult for small molecules, and peptides generally lack appropriate pharmacokinetic properties. We previously identified the NaV1.7 inhibitory peptide GpTx-1 from tarantula venom and optimized its potency and selectivity via structure-guided analoging. To further understand GpTx-1 binding to NaV1.7, we have mapped the binding site to transmembrane segments 1-4 of the second pseudosubunit internal repeat (commonly referred to as Site 4) using NaV1.5/NaV1.7 chimeric protein constructs. We also report that select GpTx-1 amino acid residues apparently not contacting NaV1.7 can be derivatized with a hydrophilic polymer without adversely affecting peptide potency. Homodimerization of GpTx-1 with a bifunctional polyethylene glycol (PEG) linker resulted in a compound with increased potency and a significantly reduced off-rate, demonstrating the ability to modulate the function and properties of GpTx-1 by linking to additional molecules.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2015.06.033DOI Listing
November 2015

Engineering potent and selective analogues of GpTx-1, a tarantula venom peptide antagonist of the Na(V)1.7 sodium channel.

J Med Chem 2015 Mar 19;58(5):2299-314. Epub 2015 Feb 19.

Departments of Therapeutic Discovery, ‡Neuroscience, and §Pharmacokinetics & Drug Metabolism, Amgen Inc. , One Amgen Center Drive, Thousand Oaks, California 91320, United States.

NaV1.7 is a voltage-gated sodium ion channel implicated by human genetic evidence as a therapeutic target for the treatment of pain. Screening fractionated venom from the tarantula Grammostola porteri led to the identification of a 34-residue peptide, termed GpTx-1, with potent activity on NaV1.7 (IC50 = 10 nM) and promising selectivity against key NaV subtypes (20× and 1000× over NaV1.4 and NaV1.5, respectively). NMR structural analysis of the chemically synthesized three disulfide peptide was consistent with an inhibitory cystine knot motif. Alanine scanning of GpTx-1 revealed that residues Trp(29), Lys(31), and Phe(34) near the C-terminus are critical for potent NaV1.7 antagonist activity. Substitution of Ala for Phe at position 5 conferred 300-fold selectivity against NaV1.4. A structure-guided campaign afforded additive improvements in potency and NaV subtype selectivity, culminating in the design of [Ala5,Phe6,Leu26,Arg28]GpTx-1 with a NaV1.7 IC50 value of 1.6 nM and >1000× selectivity against NaV1.4 and NaV1.5.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jm501765vDOI Listing
March 2015

Inhibition of 5-HT(3) receptors-activated currents by cannabinoids in rat trigeminal ganglion neurons.

J Huazhong Univ Sci Technolog Med Sci 2012 Apr 20;32(2):265-271. Epub 2012 Apr 20.

DL Naturegene Life Sciences, Thousand Oaks, CA, 91320, USA.

This study investigated the modulatory effect of synthetic cannabinoids WIN55,212-2 on 5-HT(3) receptor-activated currents (I(5-HT3)) in cultured rat trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons using whole-cell patch clamp technique. The results showed that: (1) The majority of examined neurons (78.70%) were sensitive to 5-HT (3-300 μmol/L). 5-HT induced inward currents in a concentration-dependent manner and the currents were blocked by ICS 205-930 (1 μmol/L), a selective antagonist of the 5-HT(3) receptor; (2) Pre-application of WIN55,212-2 (0.01-1 μmol/L) significantly inhibited I(5-HT3) reversibly in concentration-dependent and voltage-independent manners. The concentration-response curve of 5-HT(3) receptor was shifted downward by WIN55,212-2 without any change of the threshold value. The EC(50) values of two curves were very close (17.5±4.5) μmol/L vs. (15.2±4.5) μmol/L and WIN55,212-2 decreased the maximal amplitude of I(5-HT3) by (48.65±4.15)%; (3) Neither AM281, a selective CB1 receptor antagonist, nor AM630, a selective CB2 receptor antagonist reversed the inhibition of I(5-HT3) by WIN55,212-2; (4) When WIN55,212-2 was given from 15 to 120 s before 5-HT application, inhibitory effect was gradually increased and the maximal inhibition took place at 90 s, and the inhibition remained at the same level after 90 s. We are led to concluded that-WIN55,212-2 inhibited I(5-HT3) significantly and neither CB1 receptor antagonist nor CB2 receptor antagonist could reverse the inhibition of I(5-HT3) by WIN55,212-2. Moreover, WIN55,212-2 is not an open channel blocker (OCB) of 5-HT(3) receptor. WIN55,212-2 significantly inhibited 5-HT-activated currents in a non-competitive manner. The inhibition of I(5-HT3) by WIN55,212-2 is probably new one of peripheral analgesic mechanisms of WIN55,212-2, but the mechanism by which WIN55,212-2 inhibits I(5-HT3) warrants further investigation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11596-012-0047-1DOI Listing
April 2012

Discovery and hit-to-lead optimization of pyrrolopyrimidines as potent, state-dependent Na(v)1.7 antagonists.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2012 Mar 18;22(5):2052-62. Epub 2012 Jan 18.

Department of Chemistry Research and Discovery, Amgen Inc., 360 Binney St., Cambridge, MA 02142, USA.

Herein we describe the discovery, optimization, and structure-activity relationships of novel potent pyrrolopyrimidine Na(v)1.7 antagonists. Hit-to-lead SAR studies of the pyrrolopyrimidine core, head, and tail groups of the molecule led to the identification of pyrrolopyrimidine 48 as exceptionally potent Na(v)1.7 blocker with good selectivity over hERG and improved microsomal stability relative to our hit molecule and pyrazolopyrimidine 8 as a promising starting point for future optimization efforts.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2012.01.015DOI Listing
March 2012

The discovery of aminopyrazines as novel, potent Na(v)1.7 antagonists: hit-to-lead identification and SAR.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2012 Mar 18;22(5):2033-42. Epub 2012 Jan 18.

Department of Chemistry Research and Discovery, Amgen Inc., 360 Binney St., Cambridge, MA 02142, USA.

Herein the discovery of a novel class of aminoheterocyclic Na(v)1.7 antagonists is reported. Hit compound 1 was potent but suffered from poor pharmacokinetics and selectivity. The compact structure of 1 offered a modular synthetic strategy towards a broad structure-activity relationship analysis. This analysis led to the identification of aminopyrazine 41, which had vastly improved hERG selectivity and pharmacokinetic properties.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2012.01.023DOI Listing
March 2012

Discovery and optimization of aminopyrimidinones as potent and state-dependent Nav1.7 antagonists.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2012 Jan 6;22(2):1055-60. Epub 2011 Dec 6.

Department of Chemistry Research and Discovery, Amgen Inc., 360 Binney St., Cambridge, MA 02142, USA.

Clinical genetic data have shown that the product of the SCN9A gene, voltage-gated sodium ion channel Nav1.7, is a key control point for pain perception and a possible target for a next generation of analgesics. Sodium channels, however, historically have been difficult drug targets, and many of the existing structure-activity relationships (SAR) have been defined on pharmacologically modified channels with indirect reporter assays. Herein we describe the discovery, optimization, and SAR of potent aminopyrimidinone Nav1.7 antagonists using electrophysiology-based assays that measure the ligand-receptor interaction directly. Within this series, rapid functionalization at the polysubstituted aminopyrimidinone head group enabled exploration of SAR and of pharmacokinetic properties. Lead optimized N-Me-aminopyrimidinone 9 exhibited improved Nav1.7 potency, minimal off-target hERG liability, and improved rat PK properties.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2011.11.111DOI Listing
January 2012

Identification of a potent, state-dependent inhibitor of Nav1.7 with oral efficacy in the formalin model of persistent pain.

J Med Chem 2011 Jul 2;54(13):4427-45. Epub 2011 Jun 2.

Department of Chemistry Research and Discovery, Amgen Inc., Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142, United States.

Clinical human genetic studies have recently identified the tetrodotoxin (TTX) sensitive neuronal voltage gated sodium channel Nav1.7 (SCN9A) as a critical mediator of pain sensitization. Herein, we report structure-activity relationships for a novel series of 2,4-diaminotriazines that inhibit hNav1.7. Optimization efforts culminated in compound 52, which demonstrated pharmacokinetic properties appropriate for in vivo testing in rats. The binding site of compound 52 on Nav1.7 was determined to be distinct from that of local anesthetics. Compound 52 inhibited tetrodotoxin-sensitive sodium channels recorded from rat sensory neurons and exhibited modest selectivity against the hERG potassium channel and against cloned and native tetrodotoxin-resistant sodium channels. Upon oral administration to rats, compound 52 produced dose- and exposure-dependent efficacy in the formalin model of pain.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jm200018kDOI Listing
July 2011

Arrhythmogenic autoantibodies against calcium channel lead to sudden death in idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy.

Eur J Heart Fail 2011 Mar 2;13(3):264-70. Epub 2010 Nov 2.

Department of Cardiology, Institute of Cardiology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, China.

Aims: Calcium channel plays an important role in the autoimmune pathogenesis of idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Autoantibodies have emerged as a new upstream target of sudden death in DCM. We sought to validate the hypothesis that autoantibodies against l-type calcium channel (CC-AAbs) are arrhythmogenic and lead to sudden death in patients with DCM.

Methods And Results: We investigated sudden death and ventricular arrhythmias in 80 patients with DCM in a prospective, case follow-up survey. During a follow-up of 32 (SD 8) months, CC-AAbs-positive patients not only had a higher incidence of ventricular tachycardia (VT) but also a higher incidence of sudden death than CC-AAbs-negative patients (for VT: 59.0 vs. 24.4%, P = 0.002 and for sudden death: 20.5 vs. 4.9%, P = 0.045). Further univariate and multivariate analyses showed that the occurrence of CC-AAbs was the strongest independent predictor for sudden death (odds ratio: 10.20, 95% confidence interval: 2.43-36.78, P = 0.0027). Experimental studies in ex vivo systems using affinity-purified CC-AAbs from patients demonstrated that CC-AAbs were able to induce VT by prolongation of action potential duration (APD) and triggered activity by early afterdepolarization (EAD).

Conclusion: Our results demonstrate for the first time to our knowledge that there is a high incidence of sudden death and VT in CC-AAbs-positive patients with DCM. Furthermore, experimental data from ex vivo systems suggest that CC-AAbs might induce VT by prolongation of APD and triggered activity by EAD.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/eurjhf/hfq198DOI Listing
March 2011

Aconitine blocks HERG and Kv1.5 potassium channels.

J Ethnopharmacol 2010 Aug 19;131(1):187-95. Epub 2010 Jun 19.

Ion Channelopathy Research Center, Institute of Cardiology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, PR China.

Ethnopharmacological Relevance: Aconitum has been widely used to treat various diseases in China for a long time. However, improper use of this drug results in severe intoxication. Aconitine (ACO), a diterpenoid alkaloid from aconitum, mainly contributes to cardio-toxic effects of aconitum and has also been commonly known to induce arrhythmias in animal models. However, its pro-arrhythmic mechanisms are not clear.

Aim Of The Study: The effects of ACO on HERG and Kv1.5 channels were investigated.

Materials And Methods: HERG and Kv1.5 channels were expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes, and the resulting currents were recorded using a two-microelectrode voltage clamp technique.

Results: In HERG channels, ACO exhibited a blockade in a voltage- and time-dependent manner. The blockade was enhanced by further activation of currents, which were consistent with an open-channel blockade. In Kv1.5 channels, ACO produced a voltage-, time-, and frequency-dependent inhibition. The blockade was enhanced by higher rates of stimulation, consistent with preferential binding of the drug to the open state. In addition, ACO blocked Kv1.5 and HERG channels in a concentration-dependent manner with an IC(50) of 0.796+/-0.123 and 1.801+/-0.332 microM, respectively.

Conclusions: ACO blocks HERG and Kv1.5 potassium channels in the open state. Blockade of potassium channels, particular the HERG channel, may be one of the important mechanisms of how ACO induces arrhythmias.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2010.06.025DOI Listing
August 2010

Molecular determinants of Kv1.5 channel block by diphenyl phosphine oxide-1.

J Mol Cell Cardiol 2010 Jun 23;48(6):1111-20. Epub 2010 Feb 23.

Research Center of Ion Channelopathy, Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, 1277 Jiefang Ave, Wuhan 430022, China.

Kv1.5 channels conduct the ultra-rapid delayed rectifier current (I(Kur)) that contributes to action potential repolarization of human atrial myocytes. Block of these channels has been proposed as a treatment for atrial arrhythmias. Diphenyl phosphine oxide-1 (DPO-1) is a novel and potent inhibitor of Kv1.5 potassium channels. The present study was undertaken to characterize the mechanisms and molecular determinants of channel block by DPO-1. Experiments were carried out on wild-type and mutant Kv1.5 channels expressed in Xenopus laevis oocytes using the standard two microelectrode voltage clamp technique. DPO-1 blocked Kv1.5 current in oocytes with an IC(50) of 0.78+/-0.12 microM at +40 mV. Block was enhanced by higher rates of stimulation, consistent with preferential binding of the drug to the open state of the channel. Ala-scanning mutagenesis of the pore domain of Kv1.5 identified the residues Thr480, Leu499, Leu506, Ile508, Leu510 and Val514 as components of the putative binding site for DPO-1, partially overlapping the site previously defined for the Kv1.5 channel blockers AVE0118 and S0100176. Block of Kv1.5 by DPO-1 was significantly reduced in the presence of Kvbeta1.3.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yjmcc.2010.02.010DOI Listing
June 2010

Glycyrretinic acid blocks cardiac sodium channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

J Ethnopharmacol 2009 Sep 25;125(2):318-23. Epub 2009 Jun 25.

Ion Channelopathy Research Center, Institute of Cardiology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, PR China.

Ethnopharmacological Relevance: Licorice has been used to treat many ailments including cardiovascular disorders in China for long time. Recent studies have shown that the cardiac actions of licorice have been attributed to its active component, glycyrretinic acid (GA). However, its mechanism remains poorly understood.

Aim Of The Study: The effects of GA on the cardiac sodium currents (I(Na)), L-type calcium currents (I(Ca,L)) and hyperpolarization-activated inward currents (I(f)) were investigated.

Materials And Methods: Human isoforms of wild-type and DeltaKPQ-mutant type sodium channels were expressed in Xenopus oocytes, and the resulting currents (peak and late I(Na)) were recorded using a two-microelectrode voltage-clamp technique. A perforated patch clamp technique was employed to record I(Ca,L) and I(f) from isolated rabbit sinoatrial node pacemaker cells.

Results: GA inhibited peak I(Na) (33% at 90 microM) and late I(Na) (72% at 90 microM), but caused no significant effects on I(Ca,L) and I(f).

Conclusion: GA blocked cardiac sodium currents, particularly late I(Na.) Our findings might help to understand the traditional use of licorice in the treatment of cardiovascular disorders, because reduction of sodium currents (particularly late I(Na)) would be expected to provide protection from Na(+)-induced Ca(2+) overload and cell damage.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2009.06.016DOI Listing
September 2009

The role of hERG1 K+ channels and a functional link between hERG1 K+ channels and SDF-1 in acute leukemic cell migration.

Exp Cell Res 2009 Aug 3;315(13):2256-64. Epub 2009 May 3.

Center for Stem Cell Research and Application, Institute of Cardiology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, PR China.

Stromal cell-derived factor-1 (SDF-1) and its unique receptor, CXCR4, regulate stem/progenitor cell migration and retention in the bone marrow and are required for hematopoiesis. Recent studies found that hERG1 K(+) channels were important regulators of tumor cell migration. In this study, we investigated whether SDF-1 induced acute leukemic cell migration associated with hERG1 K(+) channels. Our results showed that E-4031, a specific hERG1 K(+) channels inhibitor, significantly blocked SDF-1-induced migration of leukemic cell lines, primary acute leukemic cells, leukemic stem cells and HEK293T cells transfected with herg-pEGFP. The migration of phenotypically recognizable subsets gave the indication that lymphoblastic leukemic cells were inhibited more than myeloid cells while in the presence of E-4031 which maybe associated with herg expression. SDF-1 increased hERG1 K(+) current expressed in oocytes and HEK293T cells transfected with herg-pEGFP. There were no significant changes of CXCR4 expression on both HL-60 cells and primary leukemic cells regardless if untreated or treated with E-4031 for 24 h (P>0.05). The hERG1 K(+) current increased by SDF-1 might contribute to the mechanism of SDF-1-induced leukemic cell migration. The data suggested that hERG1 K(+) channels functionally linked to cell migration induced by SDF-1.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yexcr.2009.04.017DOI Listing
August 2009

Aryl sulfonamido tetralin inhibitors of the Kv1.5 ion channel.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2009 Jun 8;19(11):3063-6. Epub 2009 Apr 8.

Icagen Inc, NC 27709, United States.

Aryl sulfonamido tetralins based on lead compound 2a were synthesized and evaluated for Kv1.5 inhibitory activity. Several compounds having IC(50) values less then 0.1 microM were identified. Kv1.5 inhibitors have the potential to be atrium-selective agents for the treatment of atrial fibrillation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2009.04.002DOI Listing
June 2009

[Analysis and analyzing mechanisms of HERG channel kinetics].

Sheng Wu Yi Xue Gong Cheng Xue Za Zhi 2008 Oct;25(5):1068-73

Research Center of Ion Channelopathy, Department of Cardiology, Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, China.

We have investigated the methods and mechanisms for analysis of the channel kinetics parameters of voltage-gated potassium channels, HERG (Human ether-à-go-go related gene) channels, in the process of electrophysiological recording. The current of HERG K+ channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes was studied using a two-electrode voltage clamp technique, and the channel kinetics parameters were analyzed through compiling different pulse protocol and recording the current. Results showed: (1) The HERG K+ channels, under conditions of being activated with depolarized pulse, expressed an inward-rectified property attributing to rapid inactivation. The activation curve could be obtained through fitting the depolarized potential and the following peak amplitude of tail current, while the parameters of time-dependent activation was obtained through fitting different depolarized duration and the corresponding peak amplitude of tail current. (2) The I-V relationship still exhibit marked inward rectification. Tail current decay traces were fitted with a bi-exponential function to determine the time constants of the fast and slow components of current decay. (3) The inactivation of HERG channels is voltage-dependent. The inactivation process was isolated with two different three-pulse protocols, with which the inactivation curve and nearly linear I-V relationship were obtained, respectively. Thus, altough the kinetics properties of HERG channels were complicated, the channels kinetics could be indirectly analyzed through differently designed pulse protocols, which provided the basis for investigation on Alanine-scanning mutagenesis and agent action.
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October 2008

Blockade action of ketanserin and increasing effect of potassium ion on Kv1.3 channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes.

Pharmacol Res 2007 Aug 16;56(2):148-54. Epub 2007 May 16.

Department of Cardiology, Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases, Ion Channelopathy Research Center, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, PR China.

The goal of this study was to investigate the pharmacological effects of ketanserin (KT) and elevated extracellular potassium ([K+]o) on Kv1.3 potassium channels. Kv1.3 channels were expressed in Xenopus oocytes, and the resulting currents were measured using a two-microelectrode voltage-clamp technique. KT blocked Kv1.3 currents in a concentration-dependent, time-dependent and voltage-independent manner, and accelerated their activation and inactivation. Kv1.3 currents were increased by high [K+]o in a concentration-dependent manner. Our results suggest that KT acts directly on the open state of the Kv1.3 channel, whereas augmentation of extracellular [K] enhances current flow through the channel by increasing the channel's conductance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.phrs.2007.05.002DOI Listing
August 2007

Aryl sulfonamido indane inhibitors of the Kv1.5 ion channel.

Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2007 May 27;17(10):2849-53. Epub 2007 Feb 27.

Icagen Inc., PO Box 14487, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.

A collection of aryl sulfonamido indanes based on the lead compound 1 was synthesized and evaluated for Kv1.5 inhibitory activity. Kv1.5 inhibitors have the potential to be atrium-selective agents for treatment of atrial fibrillation. (1R,2R)-1 has an IC(50) of 0.033microM against Kv1.5 and is selective against other cardiac ion channels, including hERG.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bmcl.2007.02.052DOI Listing
May 2007

Distribution and functional properties of human KCNH8 (Elk1) potassium channels.

Am J Physiol Cell Physiol 2003 Dec 30;285(6):C1356-66. Epub 2003 Jul 30.

Icagen, Inc., 4222 Emperor Blvd., Durham, NC 27703, USA.

The Elk subfamily of the Eag K+ channel gene family is represented in mammals by three genes that are highly conserved between humans and rodents. Here we report the distribution and functional properties of a member of the human Elk K+ channel gene family, KCNH8. Quantitative RT-PCR analysis of mRNA expression patterns showed that KCNH8, along with the other Elk family genes, KCNH3 and KCNH4, are primarily expressed in the human nervous system. KCNH8 was expressed at high levels, and the distribution showed substantial overlap with KCNH3. In Xenopus oocytes, KCNH8 gives rise to slowly activating, voltage-dependent K+ currents that open at hyperpolarized potentials (half-maximal activation at -62 mV). Coexpression of KCNH8 with dominant-negative KCNH8, KCNH3, and KCNH4 subunits led to suppression of the KCNH8 currents, suggesting that Elk channels can form heteromultimers. Similar experiments imply that KCNH8 subunits are not able to form heteromultimers with Eag, Erg, or Kv family K+ channels.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1152/ajpcell.00179.2003DOI Listing
December 2003

Electrophysiological analysis of heterologously expressed Kv and SK/IK potassium channels.

Curr Protoc Pharmacol 2003 May;Chapter 11:Unit11.5

Icagen, Durham, North Carolina, USA.

This unit describes protocols to aid investigators in determining the electrophysiological and pharmacological profile of heterologously expressed voltage or calcium-activated potassium channels belonging to the Kv1.x and SK/IK gene families. Protocols for data acquisition as well as analysis are provided.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/0471141755.ph1105s20DOI Listing
May 2003