|Title||In vitro discovery of novel prokaryotic ion channel candidates for antiarrhythmic gene therapy.|
|Publication Type||Book Section|
|Year of Publication||2021|
|Authors||T Wu, HX Nguyen, and N Bursac|
|Pagination||407 - 434|
Sudden cardiac death continues to have a devastating impact on public health prompting the continued efforts to develop more effective therapies for cardiac arrhythmias. Among different approaches to normalize function of ion channels and prevent arrhythmogenic remodeling of tissue substrate, cardiac cell and gene therapies are emerging as promising strategies to restore and maintain normal heart rhythm. Specifically, the ability to genetically enhance electrical excitability of diseased hearts through voltage-gated sodium channel (VGSC) gene transfer could improve velocity of action potential conduction and act to stop reentrant circuits underlying sustained arrhythmias. For this purpose, prokaryotic VGSC genes are promising therapeutic candidates due to their small size (<1kb) and potential to be effectively packaged in adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors and delivered to cardiomyocytes for stable, long-term expression. This article describes a versatile method to discover and characterize novel prokaryotic ion channels for use in gene and cell therapies for heart disease including cardiac arrhythmias. Detailed protocols are provided for: (1) identification of potential ion channel candidates from large genomic databases, (2) candidate screening and characterization using site-directed mutagenesis and engineered human excitable cell system and, (3) candidate validation using electrophysiological techniques and an in vitro model of impaired cardiac impulse conduction.