Resolved structure and selectivity mechanism of a potassium channel
Određena je struktura i otkriven mehanizam selektivnosti kalijumovog kanala
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Potassium Channels play a central role in the function of nearly every living cell. In the nervous system they govern the frequency of nerve impulses. The Potassium Channels are highly selective-perhaps as much as 10000:1 for K+ over Na+, despite the minimal structural difference between the two. At the same time, Potassium channels promote tremendous ion flux; in some cases on the order of 108 ions per second pass through a single open channel. In little more than a decade, we have come from almost complete ignorance about the molecular nature of Potassium channels to a high-resolution structure and mechanism for its selectivity.