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Nature. 2009 May 21;459(7245):347-55. doi: 10.1038/nature08143.

Unlocking the molecular secrets of sodium-coupled transporters.

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Vollum Institute, Oregon Health and Science University, 3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Road, Oregon 97239, USA.


Transmembrane sodium-ion gradients provide energy that can be harnessed by 'secondary transporters' to drive the translocation of solute molecules into a cell. Decades of study have shown that such sodium-coupled transporters are involved in many physiological processes, making them targets for the treatment of numerous diseases. Within the past year, crystal structures of several sodium-coupled transporters from different families have been reported, showing a remarkable structural conservation between functionally unrelated transporters. These atomic-resolution structures are revealing the mechanism of the sodium-coupled transport of solutes across cellular membranes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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