A new type of ion channels was just discovered. Image source: Wikimedia Commons
A new type of ion channels was just discovered

It doesn’t happen every day: a new class of proteins has been discovered. Called Otop1, the protein is an ion channels located in the membrane of the cells where it transports protons (particles that produce acid pH). This proton channel serves several functions in the body. For example, it is involved in sensing sour (acidic) taste. Moreover, in the internal ear Otop1 is important for the function of structures called otoconia which perceive gravity and acceleration, thus they are essential for our equilibrium. Discovery of a protein involved in such distant, but important biological functions is remarkable and it outlines the power of scientific research.

Read the full story: University of Southern CAlifornia
Scientific publication: Science