Special Issue "TRPC Channels"

A special issue of Cells (ISSN 2073-4409).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 29 February 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Alexander G. Obukhov
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Anatomy, Cell Biology & Physiology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Interests: molecular physiology of TRPC channels; cation channels; Ca2+ influx; electrophysiology

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels belong to the superfamily of TRP cation channels. There are seven members in the TRPC subfamily, with TRPC2 being a pseudogene in humans. TRPCs are Ca2+ permeable, non-selective cation channels that are capable of mediating a significant Ca2+ influx into cells. A growing body of evidence indicates that TRPC channels are involved in regulating neurite outgrowth, axon guidance, neurodegeneration, endothelium-mediated vasodilation, smooth muscle cell contraction, etc. TRPC genes are associated with human diseases such as focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, hypertrophic pyloric stenosis, and spinocerebellar ataxia 41. The development of knockout mouse models and the discovery of several selective small molecule modulators of TRPC channels have been crucial for the beginning of our understanding of TRPC function in health and disease, which is an ongoing endeavour. The most recent scientific breakthrough in the TRPC field has been the solving of the cryo-electron microscopy structures of several TRPC proteins (TRPC3, TRPC4, TRPC5, and TRPC6). These advances have opened new horizons for deciphering the precise molecular mechanisms underlying TRPC functional activity. This Special Issue will provide an open access platform for reviews and original research papers describing new findings in the TRPC field, covering any topics related to the channels’ biophysics, structure, and/or physiological/pathophysiological roles.

Dr. Alexander G. Obukhov
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • TRPC channels
  • Cation channels
  • Molecular physiology
  • TRPC channel structure
  • TRPC channel regulation
  • Transcriptional gene regulation

Published Papers (13 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
TRPC1 Regulates the Activity of a Voltage-Dependent Nonselective Cation Current in Hippocampal CA1 Neurons
Cells 2020, 9(2), 459; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020459 (registering DOI) - 18 Feb 2020
Abstract
The cation channel subunit TRPC1 is strongly expressed in central neurons including neurons in the CA1 region of the hippocampus where it forms complexes with TRPC4 and TRPC5. To investigate the functional role of TRPC1 in these neurons and in channel function, we [...] Read more.
The cation channel subunit TRPC1 is strongly expressed in central neurons including neurons in the CA1 region of the hippocampus where it forms complexes with TRPC4 and TRPC5. To investigate the functional role of TRPC1 in these neurons and in channel function, we compared current responses to group I metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR I) activation and looked for major differences in dendritic morphology in neurons from TRPC1+/+ and TRPC1−/− mice. mGluR I stimulation resulted in the activation of a voltage-dependent nonselective cation current in both genotypes. Deletion of TRPC1 resulted in a modification of the shape of the current-voltage relationship, leading to an inward current increase. In current clamp recordings, the percentage of neurons that responded to depolarization in the presence of an mGluR I agonist with a plateau potential was increased in TRPC1−/− mice. There was also a small increase in the minor population of CA1 neurons that have more than one apical dendrite in TRPC1−/− mice. We conclude that TRPC1 has an inhibitory effect on receptor-operated nonselective cation channels in hippocampal CA1 neurons probably as a result of heterotetramer formation with other TRPC isoforms, and that TRPC1 deletion has only minor effects on dendritic morphology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessArticle
Involvement of TRPC4 and 5 Channels in Persistent Firing in Hippocampal CA1 Pyramidal Cells
Cells 2020, 9(2), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020365 - 05 Feb 2020
Abstract
Persistent neural activity has been observed in vivo during working memory tasks, and supports short-term (up to tens of seconds) retention of information. While synaptic and intrinsic cellular mechanisms of persistent firing have been proposed, underlying cellular mechanisms are not yet fully understood. [...] Read more.
Persistent neural activity has been observed in vivo during working memory tasks, and supports short-term (up to tens of seconds) retention of information. While synaptic and intrinsic cellular mechanisms of persistent firing have been proposed, underlying cellular mechanisms are not yet fully understood. In vitro experiments have shown that individual neurons in the hippocampus and other working memory related areas support persistent firing through intrinsic cellular mechanisms that involve the transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels. Recent behavioral studies demonstrating the involvement of TRPC channels on working memory make the hypothesis that TRPC driven persistent firing supports working memory a very attractive one. However, this view has been challenged by recent findings that persistent firing in vitro is unchanged in TRPC knock out (KO) mice. To assess the involvement of TRPC channels further, we tested novel and highly specific TRPC channel blockers in cholinergically induced persistent firing in mice CA1 pyramidal cells for the first time. The application of the TRPC4 blocker ML204, TRPC5 blocker clemizole hydrochloride, and TRPC4 and 5 blocker Pico145, all significantly inhibited persistent firing. In addition, intracellular application of TRPC4 and TRPC5 antibodies significantly reduced persistent firing. Taken together these results indicate that TRPC4 and 5 channels support persistent firing in CA1 pyramidal neurons. Finally, we discuss possible scenarios causing these controversial observations on the role of TRPC channels in persistent firing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessArticle
Angiotensin-II-Evoked Ca2+ Entry in Murine Cardiac Fibroblasts Does Not Depend on TRPC Channels
Cells 2020, 9(2), 322; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020322 - 29 Jan 2020
Abstract
TRPC proteins form cation conducting channels regulated by different stimuli and are regulators of the cellular calcium homeostasis. TRPC are expressed in cardiac cells including cardiac fibroblasts (CFs) and have been implicated in the development of pathological cardiac remodeling including fibrosis. Using Ca [...] Read more.
TRPC proteins form cation conducting channels regulated by different stimuli and are regulators of the cellular calcium homeostasis. TRPC are expressed in cardiac cells including cardiac fibroblasts (CFs) and have been implicated in the development of pathological cardiac remodeling including fibrosis. Using Ca2+ imaging and several compound TRPC knockout mouse lines we analyzed the involvement of TRPC proteins for the angiotensin II (AngII)-induced changes in Ca2+ homeostasis in CFs isolated from adult mice. Using qPCR we detected transcripts of all Trpc genes in CFs; Trpc1, Trpc3 and Trpc4 being the most abundant ones. We show that the AngII-induced Ca2+ entry but also Ca2+ release from intracellular stores are critically dependent on the density of CFs in culture and are inversely correlated with the expression of the myofibroblast marker α-smooth muscle actin. Our Ca2+ measurements depict that the AngII- and thrombin-induced Ca2+ transients, and the AngII-induced Ca2+ entry and Ca2+ release are not affected in CFs isolated from mice lacking all seven TRPC proteins (TRPC-hepta KO) compared to control cells. However, pre-incubation with GSK7975A (10 µM), which sufficiently inhibits CRAC channels in other cells, abolished AngII-induced Ca2+ entry. Consequently, we conclude the dispensability of the TRPC channels for the acute neurohumoral Ca2+ signaling evoked by AngII in isolated CFs and suggest the contribution of members of the Orai channel family as molecular constituents responsible for this pathophysiologically important Ca2+ entry pathway. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Direct Activation of TRPC3 Channels by the Antimalarial Agent Artemisinin
Cells 2020, 9(1), 202; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010202 - 14 Jan 2020
Abstract
(1) Background: Members of the TRPC3/TRPC6/TRPC7 subfamily of canonical transient receptor potential (TRP) channels share an amino acid similarity of more than 80% and can form heteromeric channel complexes. They are directly gated by diacylglycerols in a protein kinase C-independent manner. To assess [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Members of the TRPC3/TRPC6/TRPC7 subfamily of canonical transient receptor potential (TRP) channels share an amino acid similarity of more than 80% and can form heteromeric channel complexes. They are directly gated by diacylglycerols in a protein kinase C-independent manner. To assess TRPC3 channel functions without concomitant protein kinase C activation, direct activators are highly desirable. (2) Methods: By screening 2000 bioactive compounds in a Ca2+ influx assay, we identified artemisinin as a TRPC3 activator. Validation and characterization of the hit was performed by applying fluorometric Ca2+ influx assays and electrophysiological patch-clamp experiments in heterologously or endogenously TRPC3-expressing cells. (3) Results: Artemisinin elicited Ca2+ entry through TRPC3 or heteromeric TRPC3:TRPC6 channels, but did not or only weakly activated TRPC6 and TRPC7. Electrophysiological recordings confirmed the reversible and repeatable TRPC3 activation by artemisinin that was inhibited by established TRPC3 channel blockers. Rectification properties and reversal potentials were similar to those observed after stimulation with a diacylglycerol mimic, indicating that artemisinin induces a similar active state as the physiological activator. In rat pheochromocytoma PC12 cells that endogenously express TRPC3, artemisinin induced a Ca2+ influx and TRPC3-like currents. (4) Conclusions: Our findings identify artemisinin as a new biologically active entity to activate recombinant or native TRPC3-bearing channel complexes in a membrane-confined fashion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessCommunication
Specific Upregulation of TRPC1 and TRPC5 Channels by Mineralocorticoid Pathway in Adult Rat Ventricular Cardiomyocytes
Cells 2020, 9(1), 47; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010047 - 23 Dec 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Whereas cardiac TRPC (transient receptor potential canonical) channels and the associated store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) are abnormally elevated during cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure, the mechanism of this upregulation is not fully elucidated but might be related to the activation of the [...] Read more.
Whereas cardiac TRPC (transient receptor potential canonical) channels and the associated store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) are abnormally elevated during cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure, the mechanism of this upregulation is not fully elucidated but might be related to the activation of the mineralocorticoid pathway. Using a combination of biochemical, Ca2+ imaging, and electrophysiological techniques, we determined the effect of 24-h aldosterone treatment on the TRPCs/Orai-dependent SOCE in adult rat ventricular cardiomyocytes (ARVMs). The 24-h aldosterone treatment (from 100 nM to 1 µM) enhanced depletion-induced Ca2+ entry in ARVMs, as assessed by a faster reduction of Fura-2 fluorescence decay upon the addition of Mn2+ and increased Fluo-4/AM fluorescence following Ca2+ store depletion. These effects were prevented by co-treatment with a specific mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) antagonist, RU-28318, and they are associated with the enhanced depletion-induced N-[4-[3,5-Bis(trifluoromethyl)-1H-pyrazol-1-yl]phenyl]-4-methyl-1,2,3-thiadiazole-5-carboxamide (BTP2)-sensitive macroscopic current recorded by patch-clamp experiments. Molecular screening by qRT-PCR and Western blot showed a specific upregulation of TRPC1, TRPC5, and STIM1 expression at the messenger RNA (mRNA) and protein levels upon 24-h aldosterone treatment of ARVMs, corroborated by immunostaining. Our study provides evidence that the mineralocorticoid pathway specifically promotes TRPC1/TRPC5-mediated SOCE in adult rat cardiomyocytes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
TRPC Channels in Cardiac Plasticity
Cells 2020, 9(2), 454; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020454 (registering DOI) - 17 Feb 2020
Abstract
The heart flexibly changes its structure in response to changing environments and oxygen/nutrition demands of the body. Increased and decreased mechanical loading induces hypertrophy and atrophy of cardiomyocytes, respectively. In physiological conditions, these structural changes of the heart are reversible. However, chronic stresses [...] Read more.
The heart flexibly changes its structure in response to changing environments and oxygen/nutrition demands of the body. Increased and decreased mechanical loading induces hypertrophy and atrophy of cardiomyocytes, respectively. In physiological conditions, these structural changes of the heart are reversible. However, chronic stresses such as hypertension or cancer cachexia cause irreversible remodeling of the heart, leading to heart failure. Accumulating evidence indicates that calcium dyshomeostasis and aberrant reactive oxygen species production cause pathological heart remodeling. Canonical transient receptor potential (TRPC) is a nonselective cation channel subfamily whose multimodal activation or modulation of channel activity play important roles in a plethora of cellular physiology. Roles of TRPC channels in cardiac physiology have been reported in pathological cardiac remodeling. In this review, we summarize recent findings regarding the importance of TRPC channels in flexible cardiac remodeling (i.e., cardiac plasticity) in response to environmental stresses and discuss questions that should be addressed in the near future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
Open AccessReview
The Role of TRPC1 in Modulating Cancer Progression
Cells 2020, 9(2), 388; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020388 - 07 Feb 2020
Abstract
Calcium ions (Ca2+) play an important role as second messengers in regulating a plethora of physiological and pathological processes, including the progression of cancer. Several selective and non-selective Ca2+-permeable ion channels are implicated in mediating Ca2+ signaling in [...] Read more.
Calcium ions (Ca2+) play an important role as second messengers in regulating a plethora of physiological and pathological processes, including the progression of cancer. Several selective and non-selective Ca2+-permeable ion channels are implicated in mediating Ca2+ signaling in cancer cells. In this review, we are focusing on TRPC1, a member of the TRP protein superfamily and a potential modulator of store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) pathways. While TRPC1 is ubiquitously expressed in most tissues, its dysregulated activity may contribute to the hallmarks of various types of cancers, including breast cancer, pancreatic cancer, glioblastoma multiforme, lung cancer, hepatic cancer, multiple myeloma, and thyroid cancer. A range of pharmacological and genetic tools have been developed to address the functional role of TRPC1 in cancer. Interestingly, the unique role of TRPC1 has elevated this channel as a promising target for modulation both in terms of pharmacological inhibition leading to suppression of tumor growth and metastasis, as well as for agonistic strategies eliciting Ca2+overload and cell death in aggressive metastatic tumor cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
Open AccessReview
Insights into Activation Mechanisms of Store-Operated TRPC1 Channels in Vascular Smooth Muscle
Cells 2020, 9(1), 179; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010179 - 10 Jan 2020
Abstract
In vascular smooth muscle cells (VMSCs), the stimulation of store-operated channels (SOCs) mediate Ca2+ influx pathways which regulate important cellular functions including contraction, proliferation, migration, and growth that are associated with the development of vascular diseases. It is therefore important that we [...] Read more.
In vascular smooth muscle cells (VMSCs), the stimulation of store-operated channels (SOCs) mediate Ca2+ influx pathways which regulate important cellular functions including contraction, proliferation, migration, and growth that are associated with the development of vascular diseases. It is therefore important that we understand the biophysical, molecular composition, activation pathways, and physiological significance of SOCs in VSMCs as these maybe future therapeutic targets for conditions such as hypertension and atherosclerosis. Archetypal SOCs called calcium release-activated channels (CRACs) are composed of Orai1 proteins and are stimulated by the endo/sarcoplasmic reticulum Ca2+ sensor stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1) following store depletion. In contrast, this review focuses on proposals that canonical transient receptor potential (TRPC) channels composed of a heteromeric TRPC1/C5 molecular template, with TRPC1 conferring activation by store depletion, mediate SOCs in native contractile VSMCs. In particular, it summarizes our recent findings which describe a novel activation pathway of these TRPC1-based SOCs, in which protein kinase C (PKC)-dependent TRPC1 phosphorylation and phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PIP2) are obligatory for channel opening. This PKC- and PIP2-mediated gating mechanism is regulated by the PIP2-binding protein myristoylated alanine-rich C kinase (MARCKS) and is coupled to store depletion by TRPC1-STIM1 interactions which induce Gq/PLCβ1 activity. Interestingly, the biophysical properties and activation mechanisms of TRPC1-based SOCs in native contractile VSMCs are unlikely to involve Orai1. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessReview
TRPC Channels: Dysregulation and Ca2+ Mishandling in Ischemic Heart Disease
Cells 2020, 9(1), 173; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010173 - 10 Jan 2020
Abstract
Transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels are ubiquitously expressed in excitable and non-excitable cardiac cells where they sense and respond to a wide variety of physical and chemical stimuli. As other TRP channels, TRPC channels may form homo or heterotetrameric ion channels, and [...] Read more.
Transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels are ubiquitously expressed in excitable and non-excitable cardiac cells where they sense and respond to a wide variety of physical and chemical stimuli. As other TRP channels, TRPC channels may form homo or heterotetrameric ion channels, and they can associate with other membrane receptors and ion channels to regulate intracellular calcium concentration. Dysfunctions of TRPC channels are involved in many types of cardiovascular diseases. Significant increase in the expression of different TRPC isoforms was observed in different animal models of heart infarcts and in vitro experimental models of ischemia and reperfusion. TRPC channel-mediated increase of the intracellular Ca2+ concentration seems to be required for the activation of the signaling pathway that plays minor roles in the healthy heart, but they are more relevant for cardiac responses to ischemia, such as the activation of different factors of transcription and cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis, and angiogenesis. In this review, we highlight the current knowledge regarding TRPC implication in different cellular processes related to ischemia and reperfusion and to heart infarction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessReview
Post-Translational Modification and Natural Mutation of TRPC Channels
Cells 2020, 9(1), 135; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010135 - 07 Jan 2020
Abstract
Transient Receptor Potential Canonical (TRPC) channels are homologues of Drosophila TRP channel first cloned in mammalian cells. TRPC family consists of seven members which are nonselective cation channels with a high Ca2+ permeability and are activated by a wide spectrum of stimuli. [...] Read more.
Transient Receptor Potential Canonical (TRPC) channels are homologues of Drosophila TRP channel first cloned in mammalian cells. TRPC family consists of seven members which are nonselective cation channels with a high Ca2+ permeability and are activated by a wide spectrum of stimuli. These channels are ubiquitously expressed in different tissues and organs in mammals and exert a variety of physiological functions. Post-translational modifications (PTMs) including phosphorylation, N-glycosylation, disulfide bond formation, ubiquitination, S-nitrosylation, S-glutathionylation, and acetylation play important roles in the modulation of channel gating, subcellular trafficking, protein-protein interaction, recycling, and protein architecture. PTMs also contribute to the polymodal activation of TRPCs and their subtle regulation in diverse physiological contexts and in pathological situations. Owing to their roles in the motor coordination and regulation of kidney podocyte structure, mutations of TRPCs have been implicated in diseases like cerebellar ataxia (moonwalker mice) and focal and segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS). The aim of this review is to comprehensively integrate all reported PTMs of TRPCs, to discuss their physiological/pathophysiological roles if available, and to summarize diseases linked to the natural mutations of TRPCs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessReview
TRPC Channels in the SOCE Scenario
Cells 2020, 9(1), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010126 - 05 Jan 2020
Abstract
Transient receptor potential (TRP) proteins form non-selective Ca2+ permeable channels that contribute to the modulation of a number of physiological functions in a variety of cell types. Since the identification of TRP proteins in Drosophila, it is well known that these [...] Read more.
Transient receptor potential (TRP) proteins form non-selective Ca2+ permeable channels that contribute to the modulation of a number of physiological functions in a variety of cell types. Since the identification of TRP proteins in Drosophila, it is well known that these channels are activated by stimuli that induce PIP2 hydrolysis. The canonical TRP (TRPC) channels have long been suggested to be constituents of the store-operated Ca2+ (SOC) channels; however, none of the TRPC channels generate Ca2+ currents that resemble ICRAC. STIM1 and Orai1 have been identified as the components of the Ca2+ release-activated Ca2+ (CRAC) channels and there is a body of evidence supporting that STIM1 is able to gate Orai1 and TRPC1 in order to mediate non-selective cation currents named ISOC. STIM1 has been found to interact to and activate Orai1 and TRPC1 by different mechanisms and the involvement of TRPC1 in store-operated Ca2+ entry requires both STIM1 and Orai1. In addition to the participation of TRPC1 in the ISOC currents, TRPC1 and other TRPC proteins might play a relevant role modulating Orai1 channel function. This review summarizes the functional role of TRPC channels in the STIM1–Orai1 scenario. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessReview
Structure–Function Relationship and Physiological Roles of Transient Receptor Potential Canonical (TRPC) 4 and 5 Channels
Cells 2020, 9(1), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010073 - 27 Dec 2019
Abstract
The study of the structure–function relationship of ion channels has been one of the most challenging goals in contemporary physiology. Revelation of the three-dimensional (3D) structure of ion channels has facilitated our understanding of many of the submolecular mechanisms inside ion channels, such [...] Read more.
The study of the structure–function relationship of ion channels has been one of the most challenging goals in contemporary physiology. Revelation of the three-dimensional (3D) structure of ion channels has facilitated our understanding of many of the submolecular mechanisms inside ion channels, such as selective permeability, voltage dependency, agonist binding, and inter-subunit multimerization. Identifying the structure–function relationship of the ion channels is clinically important as well since only such knowledge can imbue potential therapeutics with practical possibilities. In a sense, recent advances in the understanding of the structure–relationship of transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels look promising since human TRPC channels are calcium-permeable, non-selective cation channels expressed in many tissues such as the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, kidney, heart, vasculature, and brain. TRPC channels are known to regulate GI contractility and motility, pulmonary hypertension, right ventricular hypertrophy, podocyte injury, seizure, fear, anxiety-like behavior, and many others. In this article, we tried to elaborate recent findings of Cryo-EM (cryogenic-electron microscopy) based structural information of TRPC 4 and 5 channels and domain-specific functions of the channel, such as G-protein mediated activation mechanism, extracellular modification of the channel, homo/hetero-tetramerization, and pharmacological gating mechanisms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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Open AccessReview
TRPC Channels in Proteinuric Kidney Diseases
Cells 2020, 9(1), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9010044 - 23 Dec 2019
Abstract
Over a decade ago, mutations in the gene encoding TRPC6 (transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily C, member 6) were linked to development of familial forms of nephrosis. Since this discovery, TRPC6 has been implicated in the pathophysiology of non-genetic forms of kidney [...] Read more.
Over a decade ago, mutations in the gene encoding TRPC6 (transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily C, member 6) were linked to development of familial forms of nephrosis. Since this discovery, TRPC6 has been implicated in the pathophysiology of non-genetic forms of kidney disease including focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), diabetic nephropathy, immune-mediated kidney diseases, and renal fibrosis. On the basis of these findings, TRPC6 has become an important target for the development of therapeutic agents to treat diverse kidney diseases. Although TRPC6 has been a major focus for drug discovery, more recent studies suggest that other TRPC family members play a role in the pathogenesis of glomerular disease processes and chronic kidney disease (CKD). This review highlights the data implicating TRPC6 and other TRPC family members in both genetic and non-genetic forms of kidney disease, focusing on TRPC3, TRPC5, and TRPC6 in a cell type (glomerular podocytes) that plays a key role in proteinuric kidney diseases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue TRPC Channels)
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