Hyperpolarization-activated Ca2+-permeable channels in the plasma membrane of tomato cells

Angela C Gelli, E. Blumwald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

92 Scopus citations


The hyperpolarization of the electrical plasma membrane potential difference has been identified as an early response of plant cells to various signals including fungal elicitors. The hyperpolarization-activated influx of Ca2+ into tomato cells was examined by the application of conventional patch clamp techniques. In both whole cell and single-channel recordings, clamped membrane voltages more negative than -120 mV resulted in time- and voltage-dependent current activation. Single-channel currents saturated with increasing activities of Ca2+ and Ba2+ from 3 to 26 mM and the single channel conductance increased from 4 pS to 11 pS in the presence of 20 mM Ca2+ or Ba2+, respectively. These channels were 20-25 and 10-13 times more permeable to Ca2+ than to K+ and to Cl-, respectively. Channel currents were strongly inhibited by 10 μM lanthanum and 50% inhibited by 100 μM nifedipine. This evidence suggests that hyperpolarization-activated Ca2+-permeable channels provide a mechanism for the influx of Ca2+ into tomato cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-45
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Membrane Biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Calcium channels
  • Hyperpolarized electrical membrane potential differences
  • Patch clamp
  • Signal transduction
  • Tomato protoplasts

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Physiology
  • Cell Biology


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