Targeting voltage sensors in sodium channels with spider toxins

Frank Bosmans, Kenton J. Swartz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Voltage-activated sodium (Nav) channels are essential in generating and propagating nerve impulses, placing them amongst the most widely targeted ion channels by toxins from venomous organisms. An increasing number of spider toxins have been shown to interfere with the voltage-driven activation process of mammalian Nav channels, possibly by interacting with one or more of their voltage sensors. This review focuses on our existing knowledge of the mechanism by which spider toxins affect Nav channel gating and the possible applications of these toxins in the drug discovery process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-182
Number of pages8
JournalTrends in Pharmacological Sciences
Volume31
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology

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