The human ether-a'-go-go related gene (hERG) K+ channel blockade by the investigative selective-serotonin reuptake inhibitor CONA-437: limited dependence on S6 aromatic residues

A J Alexandrou, James T Milnes, S Z Sun, B Fermini, S C Kim, S Jenkinson, D J Leishman, Harry J Witchel, J C Hancox, J L Leaney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Diverse non-cardiac drugs adversely influence cardiac electrophysiology by inhibiting repolarising K(+) currents mediated by channels encoded by the human ether-a-go-go-related gene (hERG). In this study, pharmacological blockade of hERG K(+) channel current (I(hERG)) by a novel investigative serotonin-selective reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), CONA-437, was investigated. Whole-cell patch-clamp measurements of I(hERG) were made from human embryonic kidney (HEK 293) cells expressing wild-type (WT) or mutant forms of the hERG channel. With a step-ramp voltage-command, peak I(hERG) was inhibited with an IC(50) of 1.34 μM at 35 ±1°C; the IC(50) with the same protocol was not significantly different at room temperature. Voltage-command waveform selection had only a modest effect on the potency of I(hERG) block: the IC50 with a ventricular action potential command was 0.72 μM. I(hERG) blockade developed rapidly with time following membrane depolarisation and showed a weak dependence on voltage, accompanied by a shift of ≈ -5 mV in voltage-dependence of activation. There was no significant effect of CONA-437 on voltage-dependence of I(hERG) inactivation, though at some voltages an apparent acceleration of the time-course of inactivation was observed. Significantly, mutation of the S6 aromatic amino acid residues Y652 and F656 had only a modest effect on I(hERG) blockade by CONA-437 (a 3-4 fold shift in affinity). CONA-437 at up to 30 μM had no significant effect on either Nav1.5 sodium channels or L-type calcium channels. In conclusion, the novel SSRI CONA-437 is particularly notable as a gating-dependent hERG channel inhibitor for which neither S6 aromatic amino-acid constituent of the canonical drug binding site on the hERG channel appears obligatory for I(hERG) inhibition to occur.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)511-523
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Physiology and Pharmacology
Volume65
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • human Ether-a’-go-go Related Gene, long QT, Torsade de Pointes, selective-serotonin reuptake inhibitors, cardiovascular, L-type calcium channels

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