Activation and inactivation of the voltage-gated sodium channel: Role of segment S5 revealed by a novel hyperkalaemic periodic paralysis mutation

Saïd Bendahhou, Theodore R. Cummins, Rabi Tawil, Stephen G. Waxman, Louis J. Ptácek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

69 Scopus citations


Hyperkalaemic periodic paralysis, paramyotonia congenita, and potassium- aggravated myotonia are three autosomal dominant skeletal muscle disorders linked to the SCN4A gene encoding the α-subunit of the human voltage- sensitive sodium channel. To date, ~20 point mutations causing these disorders have been described. We have identified a new point mutation, in the SCN4A gene, in a family with a hyperkalaemic periodic paralysis phenotype. This mutation predicts an isoleucine-to-phenylalanine substitution at position 1495 located in the transmembrane segment S5 in the fourth homologous domain of the human α-subunit sodium channel. Introduction of the 11495F mutation into the wild-type channels disrupted the macroscopic current inactivation decay and shifted both steady-state activation and inactivation to the hyperpolarizing direction. The recovery from fast inactivation was slowed, and there was no effect on channel deactivation. Additionally, a significant enhancement of slow inactivation was observed in the 1495F mutation. In contrast, the T704M mutation, a hyperkalaemic periodic paralysis mutation located in the cytoplasmic interface of the S5 segment of the second domain, also shifted activation in the hyperpolarizing direction but had little effect on fast inactivation and dramatically impaired slow inactivation. These results, showing that the 11495F and T704M hyperkalaemic periodic paralysis mutations both have profound effects on channel activation and fast-slow inactivation, suggest that the S5 segment maybe in a location where fast and slow inactivation converge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4762-4771
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 15 1999



  • Activation
  • Disorders
  • Expression
  • Na channel
  • SCN4A
  • Slow inactivation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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