Genetic variation in GNB5 causes bradycardia by augmenting the cholinergic response via increased acetylcholine-activated potassium current (IK,ACh)

Christiaan C Veerman, Isabella Mengarelli, Charlotte D Koopman, Ronald Wilders, Shirley C van Amersfoorth, Diane Bakker, Rianne Wolswinkel, Mariam Hababa, Teun P de Boer, Kaomei Guan, James Milnes, Elisabeth M Lodder, Jeroen Bakkers, Arie O Verkerk, Connie R Bezzina

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Mutations in GNB5, encoding the G-protein β5 subunit (Gβ5), have recently been linked to a multisystem disorder that includes severe bradycardia. Here, we investigated the mechanism underlying bradycardia caused by the recessive p.S81L Gβ5 variant. Using CRISPR/Cas9-based targeting, we generated an isogenic series of human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC) lines that were either wild type, heterozygous or homozygous for the GNB5 p.S81L variant. These were differentiated into cardiomyocytes (hiPSC-CMs) that robustly expressed the acetylcholine-activated potassium channel [I(KACh); also known as IK,ACh]. Baseline electrophysiological properties of the lines did not differ. Upon application of carbachol (CCh), homozygous p.S81L hiPSC-CMs displayed an increased acetylcholine-activated potassium current (IK,ACh) density and a more pronounced decrease of spontaneous activity as compared to wild-type and heterozygous p.S81L hiPSC-CMs, explaining the bradycardia in homozygous carriers. Application of the specific I(KACh) blocker XEN-R0703 resulted in near-complete reversal of the phenotype. Our results provide mechanistic insights and proof of principle for potential therapy in patients carrying GNB5 mutations.This article has an associated First Person interview with the first author of the paper.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDisease Models & Mechanisms
Volume12
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 09 Jul 2019

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