Phosphorylation is the most common and abundant post-translational modification to eukaryotic proteins, regulating a plethora of dynamic cellular processes. Here, we review and discuss recent advances in our knowledge of the breadth and importance of reversible phosphorylation in regulating the expression, localization and function of mammalian neuronal voltage-gated potassium (Kv) channels, key regulators of neuronal function. We highlight the role of modern mass spectrometric techniques and phosphospecific antibodies in revealing the extent and nature of phosphorylation at specific sites in Kv channels. We also emphasize the role of reversible phosphorylation in dynamically regulating diverse aspects of Kv channel biology. Finally, we discuss as important future directions the determination of the mechanistic basis for how altering phosphorylation state affects Kv channel expression, localization and function, the nature of macromolecular signaling complexes containing Kv channels and enzymes regulating their phosphorylation state, and the specific role of Kv channel phosphorylation in regulating neuronal function during physiological and pathophysiological events.
- Ion channel
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