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Peptides. 2004 Oct;25(10):1663-9.

Stanniocalcin 1 as a pleiotropic factor in mammals.

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Department of Oral Growth and Developmental Biology, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Hiroshima University, 1-2-3 Kasumi, Minami-ku, Hiroshima 734-8553, Japan.


Stanniocalcin (STC)1 is the mammalian homologue of STC which was originally identified as a calcium/phosphate-regulating hormone in bony fishes. STC1 is a homodimeric phosphoglycoprotein with few if any identified unique motifs in its structure with the exception of CAG repeats in the 5'-untranslated region. In contrast to fish STC which is expressed mainly in the corpuscles of Stannius, STC1 is expressed in a wide variety of tissues, but unexpectedly is not detected in the circulation under normal circumstances. Thus, STC1 may play an autocrine/paracrine rather than a classic endocrine role in mammals. Consistent with this, pleiotropic effects of STC1 have been postulated in physiological and measured in pathological situations. There is much current interest in identifying a specific STC1 receptor and putative signaling pathways to which it may be coupled. In this regard, STC1 may regulate intracellular calcium and/or phosphate (Pi) levels. In the skeletal system, for example, Pi uptake in bone-forming osteoblasts via a direct effect of STC1 on expression of the NaPi transporter Pit1 may contribute to bone formation. Here we review current understanding of the role of STC1 and its possible molecular mechanisms in the skeleton and elsewhere.

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