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, 278 (36), 34533-40

Achromatopsia-associated Mutation in the Human Cone Photoreceptor Cyclic Nucleotide-Gated Channel CNGB3 Subunit Alters the Ligand Sensitivity and Pore Properties of Heteromeric Channels

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Achromatopsia-associated Mutation in the Human Cone Photoreceptor Cyclic Nucleotide-Gated Channel CNGB3 Subunit Alters the Ligand Sensitivity and Pore Properties of Heteromeric Channels

Changhong Peng et al. J Biol Chem.

Abstract

Cone photoreceptor cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels are thought to form by assembly of two different subunit types, CNGA3 and CNGB3. Recently, mutations in the gene encoding the CNGB3 subunit have been linked to achromatopsia in humans. Here we describe the functional consequences of two achromatopsia-associated mutations in human CNGB3 (hCNGB3). Co-expression in Xenopus oocytes of human CNGA3 (hCNGA3) subunits with hCNGB3 subunits containing an achromatopsia-associated mutation in the S6 transmembrane domain (S435F) generated functional heteromeric channels that exhibited an increase in apparent affinity for both cAMP and cGMP compared with wild type heteromeric channels. In contrast, co-expression of a presumptive null mutation of hCNGB3 (T383f.s.Delta C) with hCNGA3 produced channels with properties indistinguishable from homomeric hCNGA3 channels. The effect of hCNGB3 S435F subunits on cell-surface expression of green fluorescent protein-tagged hCNGA3 subunits and of non-tagged hCNGA3 subunits on surface expression of green fluorescent protein-hCNGB3 S435F subunits were similar to those observed for wild type hCNGB3 subunits, suggesting that the mutation does not grossly disturb subunit assembly or plasma membrane targeting. The S435F mutation was also found to produce changes in the pore properties of the channel, including decreased single channel conductance and decreased sensitivity to block by l-cis-diltiazem. Overall, these results suggest that the functional properties of cone CNG channels may be altered in patients with the S435F mutation, providing evidence supporting the pathogenicity of this mutation in humans. Thus, achromatopsia may arise from a disturbance of cone CNG channel gating and permeation or from the absence of functional CNGB3 subunits.

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