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J Biochem. 2000 May;127(5):717-22.

The function of vitamin D receptor in vitamin D action.

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Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences, The University of Tokyo, Yayoi-cho, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo, 113-0032, Japan.


Vitamin D has roles in a variety of biological actions such as calcium homeostasis, cell proliferation and cell differentiation to many target tissues. Most of these biological actions of vitamin D are now considered to be exerted through the nuclear vitamin D receptor (VDR)-mediated control of target genes. VDR belongs to the nuclear hormone receptor superfamily and acts as a ligand-inducible transcription factor. For the ligand-induced transactivation of VDR, coactivator complexes have recently been shown to be essential. The function of VDR as a ligand-induced transcription factor is overviewed, and the phenotype of VDR gene knock-out mice and the VDR-mediated transcriptional and negative regulation of the key enzyme in vitamin D biosynthesis are also described, based mainly on our recent findings, to gain a better understanding of the function of VDR in the transcriptional control of vitamin D target genes.

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