Differential expression of K+ channel mRNAs in the rat brain and down-regulation in the hippocampus following seizures

Neuron. 1992 Jun;8(6):1055-67. doi: 10.1016/0896-6273(92)90127-y.


K+ channels are major determinants of membrane excitability. Differences in neuronal excitability within the nervous system may arise from differential expression of K+ channel genes, regulated spatially in a cell type-specific manner, or temporally in response to neuronal activity. We have compared the distribution of mRNAs of three K+ channel genes, Kv1.1, Kv1.2, and Kv4.2 in rat brain, and examined activity-dependent changes following treatment with the convulsant drug pentylenetetrazole. Both regional and cell type-specific differences of K+ channel gene expression were found. In addition, seizure activity caused a reduction of Kv1.2 and Kv4.2 mRNAs in the dentate granule cells of the hippocampus, raising the possibility that K+ channel gene regulation may play a role in long-term neuronal plasticity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Cerebellum / metabolism
  • Cerebellum / pathology
  • Down-Regulation*
  • Gene Expression
  • Genes
  • Granulocytes / metabolism
  • Hippocampus / metabolism*
  • Hippocampus / pathology
  • Male
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Potassium Channels / genetics*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Seizures / metabolism*
  • Seizures / pathology
  • Transcription, Genetic


  • Potassium Channels
  • RNA, Messenger