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Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2008 Oct;295(4):F867-76. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.90264.2008. Epub 2008 May 14.

Biology of claudins.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, Division of Nephrology, 2025 Zonal Ave, RMR 406, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA.


Claudins are a family of tight junction membrane proteins that regulate paracellular permeability of epithelia, likely by forming the lining of the paracellular pore. Claudins are expressed throughout the renal tubule, and mutations in two claudin genes are now known to cause familial hypercalciuric hypomagnesemia with nephrocalcinosis. In this review, we discuss recent advances in our understanding of the physiological role of various claudins in normal kidney function, and in understanding the fundamental biology of claudins, including the molecular basis for selectivity of permeation, claudin interactions in tight junction formation, and regulation of claudins by protein kinases and other intracellular signals.

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