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1: Nature 2000 May 11;405(6783):149-55
Comment in: Nature. 2000 May 11;405(6783):130-1, 133.
Prestin is the motor protein of cochlear outer hair cells.
Zheng J, Shen W, He DZ, Long KB, Madison LD, Dallos P.
The Hugh Knowles Center, Department of Neurobiology and Physiology, Northwestern
University, Evanston, Illinois 60208, USA.
The outer and inner hair cells of the mammalian cochlea perform different
functions. In response to changes in membrane potential, the cylindrical outer
hair cell rapidly alters its length and stiffness. These mechanical changes,
driven by putative molecular motors, are assumed to produce amplification
of vibrations in the cochlea that are transduced by inner hair cells. Here
we have identified an abundant complementary DNA from a gene, designated Prestin,
which is specifically expressed in outer hair cells. Regions of the encoded
protein show moderate sequence similarity to pendrin and related sulphate/anion
transport proteins. Voltage-induced shape changes can be elicited in cultured
human kidney cells that express prestin. The mechanical response of outer
hair cells to voltage change is accompanied by a 'gating current', which is
manifested as nonlinear capacitance. We also demonstrate this nonlinear capacitance
in transfected kidney cells. We conclude that prestin is the motor protein
of the cochlear outer hair cell.
PMID: 10821263 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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