British Pharmacological Society - Ion Channels workshop

13 April 2018

King's College London, London WC2R 2LS, United Kingdom

This workshop will provide participants with insights into the study of ion channels as drug targets, with particular focus on investigations in pharmacology and drug discovery using in vitro electrophysiological techniques.

Learning Objectives

Having completed the workshop, participants should be able to;

  • Describe the key properties of ion channels and how these might be altered by drugs

  • Describe the main in vitro techniques available to pharmacologists to study drug action on ion channels

  • Apply the principles needed to quantify the action of drugs at ion channels

  • Make a rational decision as to the most appropriate electrophysiological technique(s) to be employed when faced with a pharmacological or drug discovery problem relating to ion channels

Speaker information

Iain Greenwood: Iain Greenwood’s research is concerned with identifying how ion channels regulate the activity of vascular and non-vascular smooth muscle and how the activity of channels is modified in disease scenarios. His lab has been at the forefront of research that has identified K+ channels encoded by KCNQ genes to be important regulators of vascular and non-vascular smooth muscle cell contractility. In addition, Iain Greenwood in association with International collaborators has been one of the leading researchers of calcium-activated chloride channels in vascular smooth muscle cells. Iain Greenwood has received over £3 million in grants from the Medical Research Council, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, Wellcome Trust, and British Heart Foundation.

Anthony Albert: Anthony Albert has spent over 20 years in academic research investigating the role of ion channels in many different native cells including neurones and muscle cells. He has substantial experience of using whole-cell and isolated patch configurations of the patch clamp technique to measure ion channel activity. His work currently focuses on properties, activation mechanisms, and functions of the transient receptor potential family of ion channels in the vasculature, which are considered novel therapeutic targets for cardiovascular diseases. In particular he is interested in how stimulation of G-protein-coupled receptors by vasoconstrictors are linked to these ion channels. His laboratory is funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council and the British Heart Foundation.

Chris Benham: Chris Benham has 18 years experience working in Research in the pharmaceutical industry. His early academic interests as a Post-doc in London and at Yale University were in the cardiovascular area where he pioneered the use of patch-clamp techniques to study ion channel signaling in smooth muscle cells. After moving to industry this interest broadened to ion channel drug discovery in the CNS with a continuing focus on calcium permeable ion channels. At SmithKline Beecham and later GSK he was instrumental in setting up and developing the company’s interest in the TRP family of ion channels. The current focus of Chris’ research is the dysfunction of TRP family members in diabetes, in sensory systems, the cardiovascular system and the gastrointestinal tract. His lab uses single cell electrophysiological and calcium imaging techniques and in vitro intact tissue models.

Book now