Cloning and molecular characterization of a putative voltage-gated sodium channel gene in the crayfish

Invert Neurosci. 2016 Jun;16(2):2. doi: 10.1007/s10158-016-0185-4. Epub 2016 Mar 31.


Voltage-gated sodium channel genes and associated proteins have been cloned and studied in many mammalian and invertebrate species. However, there is no data available about the sodium channel gene(s) in the crayfish, although the animal has frequently been used as a model to investigate various aspects of neural cellular and circuit function. In the present work, by using RNA extracts from crayfish abdominal ganglia samples, the complete open reading frame of a putative sodium channel gene has firstly been cloned and molecular properties of the associated peptide have been analyzed. The open reading frame of the gene has a length of 5793 bp that encodes for the synthesis of a peptide, with 1930 amino acids, that is 82% similar to the α-peptide of a sodium channel in a neighboring species, Cancer borealis. The transmembrane topology analysis of the crayfish peptide indicated a pattern of four folding domains with several transmembrane segments, as observed in other known voltage-gated sodium channels. Upon analysis of the obtained sequence, functional regions of the putative sodium channel responsible for the selectivity filter, inactivation gate, voltage sensor, and phosphorylation have been predicted. The expression level of the putative sodium channel gene, as defined by a qPCR method, was measured and found to be the highest in nervous tissue.

Keywords: Cloning; Crayfish; Sodium channel.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Astacoidea / chemistry
  • Astacoidea / physiology*
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Open Reading Frames
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels / chemistry*
  • Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels / physiology*


  • Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels