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Endocr Rev. 2011 Dec;32(6):755-97. doi: 10.1210/er.2010-0027. Epub 2011 Aug 23.

The extended granin family: structure, function, and biomedical implications.

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Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA.


The chromogranins (chromogranin A and chromogranin B), secretogranins (secretogranin II and secretogranin III), and additional related proteins (7B2, NESP55, proSAAS, and VGF) that together comprise the granin family subserve essential roles in the regulated secretory pathway that is responsible for controlled delivery of peptides, hormones, neurotransmitters, and growth factors. Here we review the structure and function of granins and granin-derived peptides and expansive new genetic evidence, including recent single-nucleotide polymorphism mapping, genomic sequence comparisons, and analysis of transgenic and knockout mice, which together support an important and evolutionarily conserved role for these proteins in large dense-core vesicle biogenesis and regulated secretion. Recent data further indicate that their processed peptides function prominently in metabolic and glucose homeostasis, emotional behavior, pain pathways, and blood pressure modulation, suggesting future utility of granins and granin-derived peptides as novel disease biomarkers.

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