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Nat Cell Biol. 2002 Mar;4(3):191-7.

Polycystin-2 is an intracellular calcium release channel.

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Department of Pharmacology, Yale University School of Medicine, 333 Cedar Street, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.


Polycystin-2, the product of the gene mutated in type 2 autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), is the prototypical member of a subfamily of the transient receptor potential (TRP) channel superfamily, which is expressed abundantly in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane. Here, we show by single channel studies that polycystin-2 behaves as a calcium-activated, high conductance ER channel that is permeable to divalent cations. Epithelial cells overexpressing polycystin-2 show markedly augmented intracellular calcium release signals that are lost after carboxy-terminal truncation or by the introduction of a disease-causing missense mutation. These data suggest that polycystin-2 functions as a calcium-activated intracellular calcium release channel in vivo and that polycystic kidney disease results from the loss of a regulated intracellular calcium release signalling mechanism.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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