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Papers of the Week

Papers: 7 Sep 2019 - 13 Sep 2019

2019 09 27




Editor's Pick

Structural insights into TRPM8 inhibition and desensitization.


Diver MM, Cheng Y, Julius D
Science. 2019 09 27; 365(6460):1434-1440.
PMID: 31488702.


TRPM8 is the primary detector of environmental cold and an important target for treating pathological cold hypersensitivity. Here, we present cryo-EM structures of TRPM8 in ligand-free, antagonist- or calcium-bound forms, revealing how robust conformational changes give rise to two non-conducting states, closed and desensitized. We describe a malleable ligand-binding pocket that accommodates drugs of diverse chemical structures, and delineate the ion permeation pathway, including the contribution of lipids to pore architecture. Furthermore, we show that direct calcium binding mediates stimulus-evoked desensitization, clarifying this important mechanism of sensory adaptation. We observe large rearrangements within the S4-S5 linker that reposition the S1-S4 and pore domains relative to the TRP helix, leading us to propose a distinct model for modulation of TRPM8 and possibly other TRP channels.