ProHealth health Vitamin and Natural Supplement Store and Health
Home  |  Log In  |  My Account  |  View Cart  View Your ProHealth Vitamin and Supplement Shopping Cart
800-366-6056  |  Contact Us  |  Help
Facebook Google Plus
Fibromyalgia  Chronic Fatigue Syndrome & M.E.  Lyme Disease  Natural Wellness  Supplement News  Forums  Our Story
Store     Brands   |   A-Z Index   |   Best Sellers   |   New Products   |   Deals & Specials   |   Under $10   |   SmartSavings Club

Trending News

Basic Aromatherapy to Help Balance and Calm

Tea drinkers have lower glaucoma risk

Wonderful White Tea: A Drink Fit for an Emperor

The Long-Term Benefits of Drinking Oolong Tea

Why You Should Try This Sweet-Smelling and Health-Boosting Essential Oil

Chamomile Tea: Why This Ancient Therapeutic Drink Still Stands Out Today

Arnica: This Powerful Herb Promotes Various Kinds of Healing

Get ‘Hooked’ on Cat’s Claw: The Many Benefits of This Amazonian Herb

Acid Reflux May Respond Better to Foods Than Prescribed Pills

Try Apple Cider Vinegar and Black Cumin Oil as Your Go-To Salad Dressing

Print Page
Email Article

Fat May Affect Electrical Impulses in Brain, Heart

  [ 99 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ] • April 15, 2005

Source: Washington University School of Medicine Molecules attach to proteins that regulate bioelectricity April 14, 2005 -

- Fatty molecules may modulate the electrical characteristics of nerve and heart cells by regulating the properties of key cell pores, according to research conducted at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The findings suggest a novel mechanism in which dietary fat can attach directly to proteins that regulate bioelectricity. This can affect the performance of nerve and heart cells, with potentially broad-ranging health implications. The researchers report in the April 26 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that the proteins in specific electrically responsive cell pores--voltage-sensing potassium channels--can bind to molecules of palmitate.

Palmitate is a saturated fatty acid previously linked to "hardening" of the arteries and obesity and is a common fat in unhealthy diets. "In effect, the attachment of palmitate makes these potassium channels, called Kv1.1 channels, open more easily, and this can influence the transmission of electrical impulses along nerve cells and the contraction of heart muscle cells," says senior author Richard Gross, M.D., Ph.D., professor of medicine, of chemistry and of molecular biology and pharmacology and director of the Division of Bioorganic Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology.

Potassium channels are among the most important cell channels used for propagating electrical signals in nerve and heart muscle. Their protein units form pores that permeate the outer wall or membrane of the cell and selectively allow the passage of potassium ions, which are essential components of cell signaling systems. Like a meter that measures charge in a battery, a Kv1.1 channel senses the amount of voltage between the interior and exterior of cells and can open and close in response to voltage changes. Because they are embedded in the cell membrane, Kv1.1 channels are tightly surrounded by the fatty molecules of the membrane, which line up next to each other to create a stable structure. "We think the attached palmitate molecule causes a defect in the close, regular packing of the membrane's fatty molecules around the Kv1.1 channel, because the palmitate has a different shape," Gross says. "This shape loosens the membrane packing, changes the movement of the channel protein and alters the voltage needed for it to open or close."

The researchers identified the specific site or amino acid in the Kv1.1 protein units that palmitate most often links to. They discovered that a short sequence of amino acids on either side of the attachment site is found in several other proteins as well, arguing for an evolutionarily conserved function for this amino acid sequence. Most strikingly, five of six amino acids adjacent to the attachment site matched a site where palmitate is known to attach to CD36, an abundant protein vital for moving fatty molecules through the membrane into cells. "When we see that molecules as widespread, as important and as different from each other as CD36 and Kv1.1 are linked to palmitate at the same sequence--that's nature sending us a message," Gross says. "It's possible that this palmitate attachment site has been used throughout evolution to fulfill functions involving fatty molecules."

Future investigations will seek to further characterize the electrical properties conferred by the addition of palmitate to Kv1.1. The research team will also begin studies with mice to determine the effects of dietary fats on palmitate attachment and the electrical characteristics of cells. "We want to find out if a connection exists between dietary fats, the attachment of palmitate to proteins and health," Gross says. "In obesity or in cellular lipotoxicity, you exceed cells' capacity to handle fatty acids. Accumulation of fatty acids can lead to an increase in alterations like palmitate attachment, not only in Kv1.1, but in dozens or even hundreds of other proteins. That possibly explains some of the many types of damage that result from having too high of a fatty acid burden."

Gubitosi-Klug RA, Mancuso DJ, Gross RW. The human Kv1.1 channel is palmitoylated, modulating voltage sensing: Identification of a palmitoylation consensus sequence. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2005;102(17): 5964-5968.

Funding from the National Institutes of Health supported this research. Washington University School of Medicine's full-time and volunteer faculty physicians also are the medical staff of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children's hospitals. The School of Medicine is one of the leading medical research, teaching and patient care institutions in the nation, currently ranked third in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children's hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.

Post a Comment

Featured Products From the ProHealth Store
Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor® Optimized Curcumin Longvida®

Article Comments

Be the first to comment on this article!

Post a Comment

Optimized Curcumin Longvida with Omega-3

Featured Products

Energy NADH™ 12.5mg Energy NADH™ 12.5mg
Improve Energy & Cognitive Function
Ultra ATP+, Double Strength Ultra ATP+, Double Strength
Get Energized with Malic Acid & Magnesium
FibroSleep™ FibroSleep™
The All-in-One Natural Sleep Aid
Vitamin D3 Extreme™ Vitamin D3 Extreme™
50,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Prescription Strength
Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor® Mitochondria Ignite™ with NT Factor®
Reduce Fatigue up to 45%

Natural Remedies

Live Without Anxiety or Stress Live Without Anxiety or Stress
The Big Blue Fish that Helps Chase the Blues Away The Big Blue Fish that Helps Chase the Blues Away
The Fast-Acting Solution for Healthy Digestive Function The Fast-Acting Solution for Healthy Digestive Function
Can Autoimmune Conditions be Reversed? Researchers Make a Surprising Discovery Can Autoimmune Conditions be Reversed? Researchers Make a Surprising Discovery
Clinically Studied Joint Relief Product for FM & ME/CFS Clinically Studied Joint Relief Product for FM & ME/CFS

ProHealth, Inc.
555 Maple Ave
Carpinteria, CA 93013
(800) 366-6056  |  Email

· Become a Wholesaler
· Vendor Inquiries
· Affiliate Program
Credit Card Processing
Get the latest news about Fibromyalgia, M.E/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Lyme Disease and Natural Wellness

CONNECT WITH US ProHealth on Facebook  ProHealth on Twitter  ProHealth on Pinterest  ProHealth on Google Plus

© 2018 ProHealth, Inc. All rights reserved. Pain Tracker App  |  Store  |  Customer Service  |  Guarantee  |  Privacy  |  Contact Us  |  Library  |  RSS  |  Site Map