Compartment-Specific Regulation of Nav1.7 in Sensory Neurons after Acute Exposure to TNF-α


Cell Reports 43, no. 2


Sidharth Tyagi, Grant P. Higerd-Rusli, Mohammad-Reza Ghovanloo, Fadia Dib-Hajj, Peng Zhao, Shujun Liu, Dong-Hyun Kim, Ji Seon Shim, Kang-Sik Park, Stephen G. Waxman, Jin-Sung Choi, Sulayman, D. Dib-Hajj



Tumor necrosis factor α (TNF-α) is a major pro-inflammatory cytokine, important in many diseases, that sensitizes nociceptors through its action on a variety of ion channels, including voltage-gated sodium (NaV) channels. We show here that TNF-α acutely upregulates sensory neuron excitability and current density of threshold channel NaV1.7. Using electrophysiological recordings and live imaging, we demonstrate that this effect on NaV1.7 is mediated by p38 MAPK and identify serine 110 in the channel’s N terminus as the phospho-acceptor site, which triggers NaV1.7 channel insertion into the somatic membrane. We also show that the N terminus of NaV1.7 is sufficient to mediate this effect. Although acute TNF-α treatment increases NaV1.7-carrying vesicle accumulation at axonal endings, we did not observe increased channel insertion into the axonal membrane. These results identify molecular determinants of TNF-α-mediated regulation of NaV1.7 in sensory neurons and demonstrate compartment-specific effects of TNF-α on channel insertion in the neuronal plasma membrane.

Keywords: Q1 2024

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