Ion Channel Profile of TRPM8 Cold Receptors Reveals a Role of TASK-3 Potassium Channels in Thermosensation
Animals sense cold ambient temperatures through the activation of peripheral thermoreceptors tuned to different temperatures. These receptors express TRPM8, a cold- and menthol-activated cation channel. In this study, Morenilla-Palao et al. used FACS techniques to purify TRPM8-expressing neurons and described their ion channel transcriptome. They show that cold thermoreceptors are highly enriched in TASK-3 leak potassium channels. Genetic or pharmacological inactivation of TASK-3 channels increased the excitability of thermoreceptors and decreased the cold pain threshold of living mice.