In contrast to other Classical Transient Receptor Potential TRPC channels the function of TRPC1 as an ion channel is a matter of debate, because it is often difficult to obtain substantial functional signals over background in response to over-expression of TRPC1 alone. Along these lines, heterologously expressed TRPC1 is poorly translocated to the plasma membrane as a homotetramer and may not function on its own physiologically, but may rather be an important linker and regulator protein in heteromeric TRPC channel tetramers. However, due to the lack of specific TRPC1 antibodies able to detect native TRPC1 channels in primary cells, identification of functional TRPC1 containing heteromeric TRPC channel complexes in the plasma membrane is still challenging. Moreover, an extended TRPC1 cDNA, which was recently discovered, may seriously question results obtained in heterologous expression systems transfected with shortened cDNA versions. Therefore, this review will focus on the current status of research on TRPC1 function obtained in primary cells and a TRPC1-deficient mouse model.
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