Channel Behavior and Voltage Gating of a Cx43 Mutant Simulating Preconditioning

Jose F. Ek-Vitorin, Diego Silva-Mendoza, Tasha K. Pontifex, Janis M. Burt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Ischemic preconditioning induces lateralization and dephosphorylation of Connexin 43 (Cx43). However, the Cx43 protein that remains at intercalated disks may be phosphorylated by casein kinase 1 (CK1) and protein kinase C (PKC), and both kinases provide cardioprotection from further ischemic injury. Here we explore the channel characteristics of a Cx43 mutant mimicking preconditioning by CK1 and PKC phosphorylation. Materials and Methods: Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were performed in cells expressing the mutant Cx43pc (S325,328,330,368D, S365A-Cx43), and the connexin electrical behavior was analyzed at the single channel and macroscopic level. Results: Cx43pc hemichannels opened readily, whereas gap junctions channels displayed amplitudes between the wild-type and CK1 phosphorylated forms, and weaker voltage gating than either counterpart. Conclusions: Ischemic preconditioning and the ensuing phosphorylation of Cx43 by PKC may render junctional channels insensitive to transjunctional voltages, allowing the preservation of intercellular communication in ischemic conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-187
Number of pages7
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2023


  • CK1
  • Cx43
  • PKC
  • ischemia
  • patch clamp
  • preconditioning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Transplantation


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