The interaction of κ-bungarotoxin with the nicotinic receptor of bovine chromaffin cells

Janet M. Nooney, Jeremy J. Lambert, Vincent A. Chiappinelli

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5 Citations (Scopus)


Whole-cell recording techniques were used to examine acetylcholine-induced nicotinic currents in isolated bovinei chromaffin cells. The effects on these currents of κ-bungarotoxin, a snake venon κ-neurotoxin, were tested. Exposure of cells to κ-bungarotoxin (600 nM for 40 min) produced a prolonged blockade of nicotinic currents. The mechanism of this blockade was examined in several ways. Firstly, the pre-exposure of cells to trimetaphan, a competitive nicotinic antagonist, protected against the action of subsequent additions of κ-bungarotoxin. Secondly, voltage-clamp measurements indicated that the degree of blockade produced by κ-bungarotoxin was independent of cell membrane potential. Unlike (+)-tubocurarine, κ-bungarotoxin had no direct agonist effects on nicotinic receptors. It is concluded from the present functional studies and from previously reported binding studies that κ-bungarotoxin blocks nicotinic responses in bovine chromaffin cells by binding to regions overlying acetylcholine sites on nicotinic receptors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-82
Number of pages6
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 21 Feb 1992


  • Acetylcholine
  • Bovine adrenomedullary chromaffin cell
  • Nicotinic receptor
  • κ-bungarotoxin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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