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Papers of the Week

Papers: 28 May 2022 - 3 Jun 2022

Pharmacology/Drug Development

2022 May 25

Cell Calcium


Structural snapshots of the mechanism of TRPV2 channel activation by small-molecule agonists.


Nadezhdin KD, Neuberger A, Sobolevsky AI
Cell Calcium. 2022 May 25; 105:102607.
PMID: 35636151.


Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are polymodal sensors that play critical roles in various physiological processes in living organisms. These cation-permeable channels respond to a variety of physical and chemical stimuli, including cold and hot temperatures, acidic pH, and mechanical stress, often determining a sensory frontier of defense against hostile environments. Vanilloid (V) subfamily is the most studied category of TRP channels that includes six closely related members: highly calcium-selective TRPV5-6 and non-selective TRPV1-4. A remarkable feature of TRPV1-4 is their ability to sense heat, which makes them temperature-sensitive TRP channels or thermo-TRPs. TRPV channels are associated with a multitude of human diseases, including cancers, chronic pain, cardiovascular, neurological and nociceptive disorders. Despite the great clinical interest, pharmacology of TRPV channels remains largely undeveloped because of insufficient knowledge about the mechanisms of their regulation. For instance, activation of TRPV channels by small molecules or heat remains poorly understood. Numerous identified TRPV channel agonists, while effective in physiological experiments, appear limited in their ability to act in the conditions of structural biology experiments. In this regard, the recent study by Pumroy et al. [1] makes a significant contribution towards our understanding of TRPV2 structural dynamics that leads to opening of this channel in physiological conditions.