Phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) directly interacts with the small-conductance Ca2+-activated K+ 2-a (SK2-a) channel/calmodulin complex, serving as a critical element in the regulation of channel activity. We report that changes of protein conformation in close proximity to the PIP2 binding site induced by a small-molecule SK channel modulator, NS309, can effectively enhance the interaction between the protein and PIP2 to potentiate channel activity. This novel modulation of PIP2 sensitivity by small-molecule drugs is likely not to be limited in its application to SK channels, representing an intriguing strategy to develop drugs controlling the activity of the large number of PIP2-dependent proteins.
M. Zhang, X.-Y. Meng, J.-f. Zhang, M. Cui, D. E. Logothetis, Molecular overlap in the regulation of SK channels by small molecules and phosphoinositides. Sci. Adv. 1, e1500008 (2015).
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