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Cell Physiol Biochem. 2014;34(3):966-80. doi: 10.1159/000366313. Epub 2014 Aug 27.

Anoctamin 1 is apically expressed on thyroid follicular cells and contributes to ATP- and calcium-activated iodide efflux.

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Medical Genetics Unit, Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences (DIMEC), University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy.



Iodide efflux from thyroid cells into the follicular lumen is essential for the synthesis of thyroid hormones, however, the pathways mediating this transport have only been partially identified. A calcium-activated pathway of iodide efflux has long been recognized, but its molecular identity unknown. Anoctamin 1 (ANO1) is a calcium-activated chloride channel (CaCC), and this study aims to investigate its contribution to iodide fluxes in thyroid cells.


RT-PCR, immunohistochemistry, and live cell imaging with the fluorescent halide biosensor YFP-H148Q/I152L were used to study the expression, localization and function of ANO1 in thyroid cells.


ANO1 mRNA was detected in human thyroid tissue and FRTL-5 thyrocytes, and ANO1 protein was localized to the apical membrane of follicular cells. ATP induced a transient loss of iodide from FRTL-5 cells that was dependent on the mobilization of intracellular calcium, and was inhibited by CaCC/ANO1 inhibitors and siRNA against ANO1. Calcium-activated iodide efflux was also observed in CHO cells over-expressing the Sodium Iodide Symporter (NIS) and ANO1.


ANO1 in thyrocytes functions as a calcium-activated channel mediating iodide efflux, and may contribute to the rapid delivery of iodide into the follicular lumen for the synthesis of thyroid hormones following activation by calcium-mobilizing stimuli.

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