KCNQ channels are critical determinants of neuronal excitability, thus emerging as a novel target of anti-epileptic drugs. To date, the mechanisms of KCNQ channel modulation have been mostly characterized to be inhibitory via Gq-coupled receptors, Ca2+/CaM, and protein kinase C. Here we demonstrate that methylation of KCNQ by protein arginine methyltransferase 1 (Prmt1) positively regulates KCNQ channel activity, thereby preventing neuronal hyperexcitability. Prmt1 +/-mice exhibit epileptic seizures. Methylation of KCNQ2 channels at 4 arginine residues by Prmt1 enhances PIP2 binding, and Prmt1 depletion lowers PIP2 affinity of KCNQ2 channels and thereby the channel activities. Consistently, exogenous PIP2 addition to Prmt1+/-neurons restores KCNQ currents and neuronal excitability to the WT level. Collectively, we propose that Prmt1-dependent facilitation of KCNQ-PIP2 interaction underlies the positive regulation of KCNQ activity by arginine methylation, which may serve as a key target for prevention of neuronal hyperexcitability and seizures.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)