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TitleTACAN Is an Ion Channel Involved in Sensing Mechanical Pain.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsBeaulieu-Laroche, Lou, Marine Christin, Annmarie Donoghue, Francina Agosti, Noosha Yousefpour, Hugues Petitjean, Albena Davidova, Craig Stanton, Uzair Khan, Connor Dietz, Elise Faure, Tarheen Fatima, Amanda MacPherson, Stephanie Mouchbahani-Constance, Daniel G. Bisson, Lisbet Haglund, Jean A. Ouellet, Laura S. Stone, Jonathan Samson, Mary-Jo Smith, Kjetil Ask, Alfredo Ribeiro-da-Silva, Rikard Blunck, Kate Poole, Emmanuel Bourinet, and Reza Sharif-Naeini
Date Published2020 03 05
KeywordsAnimals, Gene Expression Regulation, Humans, Ion Channels, Lipids, Mechanotransduction, Cellular, Mice, Mice, Knockout, Nociceptors, Pain, Patch-Clamp Techniques, Stress, Mechanical, Touch

Mechanotransduction, the conversion of mechanical stimuli into electrical signals, is a fundamental process underlying essential physiological functions such as touch and pain sensing, hearing, and proprioception. Although the mechanisms for some of these functions have been identified, the molecules essential to the sense of pain have remained elusive. Here we report identification of TACAN (Tmem120A), an ion channel involved in sensing mechanical pain. TACAN is expressed in a subset of nociceptors, and its heterologous expression increases mechanically evoked currents in cell lines. Purification and reconstitution of TACAN in synthetic lipids generates a functional ion channel. Finally, a nociceptor-specific inducible knockout of TACAN decreases the mechanosensitivity of nociceptors and reduces behavioral responses to painful mechanical stimuli but not to thermal or touch stimuli. We propose that TACAN is an ion channel that contributes to sensing mechanical pain.

Alternate JournalCell
PubMed ID32084332
Grant ListMOP-136903 / / CIHR / Canada