Molecular mechanisms of chloroquine inhibition of heterologously expressed Kir6.2/SUR2A channels

Daniela Ponce-Balbuena, Aldo A. Rodríguez-Menchaca, Angélica López-Izquierdo, Tania Ferrer, Harley T. Kurata, Colin G. Nichols, José A. Sánchez-Chapula

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Chloroquine and related compounds can inhibit inwardly rectifying potassium channels by multiple potential mechanisms, including pore block and allosteric effects on channel gating. Motivated by reports that chloroquine inhibition of cardiac ATP-sensitive inward rectifier K+ current (IKATP) is antifibrillatory in rabbit ventricle, we investigated the mechanism of chloroquine inhibition of ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels (Kir6.2/SUR2A) expressed in human embryonic kidney 293 cells, using inside-out patch-clamp recordings. We found that chloroquine inhibits the Kir6.2/SUR2A channel by interacting with at least two different sites and by two mechanisms of action. A fast-onset effect is observed at depolarized membrane voltages and enhanced by the N160D mutation in the central cavity, probably reflecting direct channel block resulting from the drug entering the channel pore from the cytoplasmic side. Conversely, a slow-onset, voltage-independent inhibition of IKATP is regulated by chloroquine interaction with a different site and probably involves disruption of interactions between Kir6.2/SUR2A and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate. Our findings reveal multiple mechanisms of KATP channel inhibition by chloroquine, highlighting the numerous convergent regulatory mechanisms of these ligand-dependent ion channels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)803-813
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular pharmacology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2012


Dive into the research topics of 'Molecular mechanisms of chloroquine inhibition of heterologously expressed Kir6.2/SUR2A channels'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this