Gating of GIRK channels: details of an intricate, membrane-delimited signaling complex

Neuron. 2003 Jul 3;39(1):9-12. doi: 10.1016/s0896-6273(03)00402-1.


G protein-coupled inwardly rectifying potassium channels (GIRK/Kir3) are important elements in controlling cellular excitability. In recent years, tremendous progress has been made toward understanding various components involved in channel activation, modulation, and signaling specificity. In this review, we summarize these recent findings and attempt to put them in context with recently available structural data.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Membrane / ultrastructure
  • G Protein-Coupled Inwardly-Rectifying Potassium Channels
  • GTP-Binding Proteins / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Ion Channel Gating / physiology*
  • Potassium Channels / chemistry*
  • Potassium Channels / physiology*
  • Potassium Channels, Inwardly Rectifying*
  • Protein Conformation
  • Protein Subunits / physiology
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Structure-Activity Relationship


  • G Protein-Coupled Inwardly-Rectifying Potassium Channels
  • Potassium Channels
  • Potassium Channels, Inwardly Rectifying
  • Protein Subunits
  • GTP-Binding Proteins