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Diabetes. 2004 Feb;53 Suppl 1:S12-8.

Structure, activation, and biology of calpain.

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Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology, Tokyo, Japan.


Variation in the calpain 10 gene has recently been shown to be associated with type 2 diabetes by positional cloning. Since then, studies on calpain 10 have been started in correlation with diabetes and insulin-mediated signaling. In this review, the activation mechanism of calpain by calcium ions, which is essential to understand its physiological functions, is discussed on the basis of recent X-ray structural analyses. Further, special features of the structure of calpain 10 that differ from those of typical micro - or m-calpain used in most studies are summarized together with discussion of the physiological function of calpain with respect to type 2 diabetes.

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