Calcium selective channel TRPV6: Structure, function, and implications in health and disease

Academic Article


  • Calcium-selective channel TRPV6 (Transient Receptor Potential channel family, Vanilloid subfamily member 6) belongs to the TRP family of cation channels and plays critical roles in transcellular calcium (Ca2+) transport, reuptake of Ca2+ into cells, and maintaining a local low Ca2+ environment for certain biological processes. Recent crystal and cryo-electron microscopy-based structures of TRPV6 have revealed mechanistic insights on how the protein achieves Ca2+ selectivity, permeation, and inactivation by calmodulin. The TRPV6 protein is expressed in a range of epithelial tissues such as the intestine, kidney, placenta, epididymis, and exocrine glands such as the pancreas, prostate and salivary, sweat, and mammary glands. The TRPV6 gene is a direct transcriptional target of the active form of vitamin D and is efficiently regulated to meet the body's need for Ca2+ demand. In addition, TRPV6 is also regulated by the level of dietary Ca2+ and under physiological conditions such as pregnancy and lactation. Genetic models of loss of function in TRPV6 display hypercalciuria, decreased bone marrow density, deficient weight gain, reduced fertility, and in some cases alopecia. The models also reveal that the channel plays an indispensable role in maintaining maternal-fetal Ca2+ transport and low Ca2+ environment in the epididymal lumen that is critical for male fertility. Most recently, loss of function mutations in TRPV6 gene is linked to transient neonatal hyperparathyroidism and early onset chronic pancreatitis. TRPV6 is overexpressed in a wide range of human malignancies and its upregulation is strongly correlated to tumor aggressiveness, metastasis, and poor survival in selected cancers. This review summarizes the current state of knowledge on the expression, structure, biophysical properties, function, polymorphisms, and regulation of TRPV6. The aberrant expression, polymorphisms, and dysfunction of this protein linked to human diseases are also discussed.
  • Authors

    Published In

  • Gene  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Khattar V; Wang L; Peng JB
  • Volume

  • 817