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PHYSIOLOGY IN MEDICINE In collaboration with

In collaboration with
The American Physiological Society, Thomas E. Andreoli, MD, Editor
Molecular Biology of K Channels and
Their Role in Cardiac Arrhythmias
Martin Tristani-Firouzi, MD, Jun Chen, MD, John S. Mitcheson, PhD,
Michael C. Sanguinetti, PhD
The configuration of cardiac action potentials varies consider-
ably from one region of the heart to another. These differences
are caused by differential cellular expression of several types of
K channel genes. The channels encoded by these genes can be
grouped into several classes depending on the stimulus that per-
mits the channels to open and conduct potassium ions. K
channels are activated by changes in transmembrane voltage or
binding of ligands. Voltage-gated channels are normally the
most important players in determining the shape and duration
of action potentials and include the delayed rectifiers and the
transient outward potassium channels. Ligand-gated channels
include those that probably have only minor roles in shaping
repolarization under normal conditions but, when activated by


Source: Akabas, Myles - Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Yeshiva University


Collections: Biology and Medicine