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Modulation of potassium channels in human T lymphocytes: effects of temperature. J Physiol 1990 Mar;422:103-26



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2-s2.0-0025305755   69 Citations


1. The predominant channels found in lymphocytes with patch-clamp whole-cell recordings are voltage-gated K+ channels. Several lines of evidence suggest that these channels are involved in lymphocyte function. Most lymphocyte functions are temperature sensitive and have not been correlated with electrophysiology at different temperatures. We have examined the effect of temperature on the voltage-dependent K+ channel in normal human T lymphocytes. Both macroscopic current and single-channel events were studied with whole-cell recordings at temperatures from 5 to 42 degrees C. 2. Peak conductance, activation rate, inactivation rate and rate of recovery from inactivation all increased progressively as the temperature increased. The effect of temperature on channel opening processes was greater at low temperatures. In contrast, the inactivation process was most sensitive to temperature changes above room temperature. Arrhenius plots of conductance and kinetic parameters were curvilinear with no obvious break-points. 3. The increase in whole-cell conductance at 37 degrees C was due to both an increase in the single-channel conductance and in the probability that each channel is open at any time. 4. K+ currents were fitted by Hodgkin-Huxley equations with n4j kinetics providing the best description of the currents at all temperatures tested. 5. Steady-state activation- and inactivation-voltage curves shifted in opposite directions with warming, resulting in a greater area of overlap of the curves ('window' current). The increase in resting K+ channel activity predicted by a greater window current was confirmed with single-channel measurements. 6. The present study has shown that the behaviour of K+ channels in human T lymphocytes is temperature dependent.

Author List

Pahapill PA, Schlichter LC


Peter A. Pahapill MD, PhD Associate Professor in the Neurosurgery department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Action Potentials
Ion Channel Gating
Potassium Channels