8.B.28 The Mu-Conotoxin (Mu-Conotoxin) Family
The neurotoxic cone snail peptide mu-GIIIA specifically blocks skeletal muscle voltage-gated sodium (NaV1.4; TC# 1.A.1.10.4) channels. The related conopeptides mu-PIIIA and mu-SIIIA, however, exhibit a wider activity spectrum by also inhibiting the neuronal NaV channels NaV1.2 and NaV1.7. Leipold et al. 2016 demonstrated that those mu-conopeptides with a broader target range also antagonize select subtypes of voltage-gated potassium channels of the KV1 family: mu-PIIIA and mu-SIIIA inhibited KV1.1 and KV1.6 channels in the nanomolar range, while being inactive on subtypes KV1.2-1.5 and KV2.1. Construction and electrophysiological evaluation of chimeras between KV1.5 and KV1.6 revealed that these toxins block KV channels involving their pore regions; the subtype specificity is determined in part by the sequence close to the selectivity filter but predominantly by the so-called turret domain, i.e. the extracellular loop connecting the pore with transmembrane segment S5. Conopeptides mu-SIIIA and mu- PIIIA, thus, are not specific for NaV channels (Leipold et al. 2016).