Potassium channels keep popping up as an area to watch lately...
These data support a functional role of K(v)1.5 and K(v)1.3 on activated human DCs and further define the mechanisms by which K(+) channel blockade may act to suppress immune-mediated neurological diseases.
To date, only 2 broad-spectrum K(+) channel blockers, 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) and 3,4-diaminopyridine (3,4-DAP), have been tested in MS patients. Although both 4-AP and 3,4-DAP produce clear neurologic benefits, their use has been limited by toxicity.
Progesterone effectively blocked a broad spectrum of K+ channels, reducing both Kv1.3 and charybdotoxin-resistant components of KV current and KCa current in T cells, as well as blocking several cloned KV channels expressed in cell lines.
We propose that direct inhibition of K+ channels in T cells by progesterone contributes to progesterone-induced immunosuppression.
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