Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Hum Genet. 2002 Jul;71(1):66-73. Epub 2002 May 24.

A novel member of a zinc transporter family is defective in acrodermatitis enteropathica.

Author information

Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Department of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, 94143, USA.


The rare inherited condition acrodermatitis enteropathica (AE) results from a defect in the absorption of dietary zinc. Recently, we used homozygosity mapping in consanguineous Middle Eastern kindreds to localize the AE gene to an approximately 3.5-cM region on 8q24. In this article, we identify a gene, SLC39A4, located in the candidate region and, in patients with AE, document mutations that likely lead to the disease. The gene encodes a histidine-rich protein, which we refer to as "hZIP4," which is a member of a large family of transmembrane proteins, some of which are known to serve as zinc-uptake proteins. We show that Slc39A4 is abundantly expressed in mouse enterocytes and that the protein resides in the apical membrane of these cells. These findings suggest that the hZIP4 transporter is responsible for intestinal absorption of zinc.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center