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Title: SK potassium and TRPM7 ion channel role in CNS cell survival and breast cancer cell death decisions
Author: Abdulkareem, Zana Azeez
ISNI:       0000 0004 5368 6886
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2015
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Cell survival is modulated by a cocktail of ion channels engaging cell life and death decisions through controlling key cellular messages such as apoptosis and proliferation. Unnatural regulation of these processes results in various disorders, for example neurodegenerative diseases, as well as the cancers. Nowadays, these pathologies are affecting millions of people per year in the world. Potassium (K+) ion channels appear to play a potent role in such illnesses since they can control many cellular gates in cell physiology such as ionic homeostasis and signalling cascades. Amongst the K+ channels, small (SK1-3) and intermediate (SK4) conductance Ca2+-activated potassium ion channels have recently been shown to save cells, thereby protecting mitochondrial function which serves as a cell survival platform. In the case of other ion channels, for instance transient receptor potential melastatin 7 (TRPM7), it is also repeatedly stated that such membrane channels shows an impressive and differential role in excitable and non-excitable cell survival. This channel also modulates ionic homeostasis of crucial ions in cellular physiology such as Ca2+. This study reveals that central nervous system (CNS) and breast cancer cells differentially express SK1-4 ion channel subtypes, and their functional presence is pharmacologically confirmed, however, in most cases these results were further clarified through small interference RNA (siRNA) method. Similarly, functional TRPM7 channel expression in CNS cells is also confirmed. In the CNS, SK1-4 channel activation rescues neurons from oxidative stress, whereas, TRPM7 channel inhibition protects CNS cells from this hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) harmful effect, as well as hypoxia and apoptosis, so improving cell survival. Excitingly, SK1-4 channels differentially exist between wild-type and Huntington’s affected mouse striatal cells, where diseased cells lack SK1-3 channels, key players in action potential activity. Interestingly, SK2 or SK3 channel subtypes are also functionally expressed in breast cancer cells with various phenotypes. This study established that these ion channels are powerful agents in a survival role, in fact controlling growth through cross-talk with an apoptotic avenue “intrinsic pathway”. SK2 or SK3 channel activation enhances cell viability, while its inhibition dampens cell growth. It is very noteworthy that SK2 and SK3 channels are not expressed in non-tumorigenic breast cells. In brief, SK1-4 and TRPM7 molecules are clearly implicated in the survival of diverse cell types through an apoptotic route, indicating that these ionic regulators are promising targets in channelopathies related to cellular degeneration and growth.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer) ; RM Therapeutics. Pharmacology