N-type calcium channel

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calcium channel, voltage-dependent, N type, alpha 1B subunit
Alt. symbolsCACNL1A5
Other data
LocusChr. 9 q34
Illustration of the major elements in a prototypical synapse. Synapses allow nerve cells to communicate with one another through axons and dendrites, converting electrical impulses into chemical signals.
Neuron A (transmitting) to neuron B (receiving)
1. Mitochondrion
2. Synaptic vesicle with neurotransmitters
3. Autoreceptor
4. Synapse with neurotransmitter released (serotonin)
5. Postsynaptic receptors activated by neuro-transmitter (induction of a postsynaptic potential)
6. Calcium channel
7. Exocytosis of a vesicle
8. Recaptured neurotransmitter

The N-type calcium channel is a type of voltage-dependent calcium channel. Like the others of this class, the α1 subunit is the one that determines most of the channel's properties.

N-type ('N' for "Neural-Type"[1]) calcium channels are found primarily at presynaptic terminals and are involved in neurotransmitter release. Strong depolarization by an action potential causes these channels to open and allow influx of Ca2+, initiating vesicle fusion and release of stored neurotransmitter. N-type channels are blocked by ω-conotoxin.

The analgesic drug ziconotide inhibits N-type channels.


  1. N-Type+Calcium+Channel at the US National Library of Medicine Medical Subject Headings (MeSH)