Indexed on: 25 Jan '17Published on: 25 Jan '17Published in: Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.)
Patch clamp electrophysiology is a powerful tool that has been important in isolating and characterizing the ion channels that govern cellular excitability under physiological and pathophysiological conditions. The ability to enzymatically dissociate blood vessels and acutely isolate vascular smooth muscle cells has enabled the application of patch clamp electrophysiology to the identification of diverse voltage dependent ion channels that ultimately control vasoconstriction and vasodilation. Since intraluminal pressure results in depolarization of vascular smooth muscle, the channels that control the voltage dependent influx of extracellular calcium are of particular interest. This chapter describes methods for isolating smooth muscle cells from resistance vessels, and for recording, isolating, and characterizing voltage dependent calcium channel currents, using patch clamp electrophysiological and pharmacological protocols.