All compounds inhibited the binding of [(3)H]BTX-B and IC(50)s were established at 42 microM (20(S)protopanaxadiol), 79 microM (20(S)protopanaxatriol) and 162 microM (Rh(2)). Scatchard analysis confirmed that 20(S)protopanaxadiol and Rh-2 reduced the B(max) of [(3)H]BTX-B binding while Rh(2) also increased the K(d). At IC(50) concentrations and above, 20(S)protopanaxadiol and Rh(2) increased the dissociation of the [(3)H]BTX-B:sodium channel complex above that produced by a saturating concentration of veratridine, but failed to reduce the rate of association of [(3)H]BTX-B with sodium channels.
Reversal of the inhibition of [(3)H]BTX-B binding by 20(S)protopanaxadiol and Rh(2) occurred slowly.
We conclude that the 20(S)protopanaxadiol and the less potent inhibitor Rh(2) destabilize BTX-B-activated sodium channels through non-covalent allosteric modification of neurotoxin binding site 2.