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The History of Neuroscience in AutobiographyVolume 7$
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Larry R. Squire

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780195396133

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195396133.001.0001

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Bertil Hille

Bertil Hille

Bertil Hille
The History of Neuroscience in Autobiography

Larry R. Squire

Oxford University Press

Bertil Hille helped establish the concept of ion channels as membrane proteins forming gated aqueous pores. He showed that Na+ and K+ channels of axons can be distinguished by drugs such as tetrodotoxin and tetraethyl ammonium ion, and that their ionic selectivity can be understood by a limiting pore size, the selectivity filter, and by movements of ions through a series of saturable sites. He showed that local anesthetics enter Na+ channels in a state-dependent manner. In later studies of modulation of ion channels by G-protein coupled receptors he distinguished two new signaling pathways. A fast, pertussis toxin sensitive pathway turned on inward rectifier K+ channels and turned off Ca2+ channels by G protein G(( subunits. A slow, pertussis toxin insensitive pathway turned off some K+ and Ca2+ channels by depleting the plasma membrane phosphoinositide PIP2. Hille wrote the widely used textbook, Ion Channels of Excitable Membranes.

Keywords:   ion channels, member proteins, Na+ channels, G-protein coupled receptors, signaling pathways

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