Background: The general anesthetic ketamine is known to be an N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor blocker. Although ketamine also blocks voltage-gated sodium channels in a local anesthetic-like fashion, little information exists on the molecular pharmacology of this interaction. We measured the effects of ketamine on sodium channels. Methods: Wild-type and mutant (F1579A) recombinant rat skeletal muscle sodium channels were expressed in Xenopus oocytes. The F1579A amino acid substitution site is part of the intrapore local anesthetic receptor. The effect of ketamine was measured in oocytes expressing wild-type or mutant sodium channels using two-electrode voltage clamp. Results: Ketamine blocked sodium channels in a local anesthetic-like fashion, exhibiting tonic blockade (concentration for half-maximal inhibition [IC50] = 0.8 mM), phasic blockade (IC50 = 2.3 mM), and leftward shift of the steady-state inactivation; the parameters of these actions were strongly modified by alteration of the intrapore local anesthetic binding site (IC50 = 2.1 mM and IC50 = 10.3 mM for tonic and phasic blockade, respectively). Compared with lidocaine, ketamine showed greater tonic inhibition but less phasic blockade. Conclusions: Ketamine interacts with sodium channels in a local anesthetic-like fashion, including sharing a binding site with commonly used clinical local anesthetics.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine