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Neuronal TRP channels: thermometers, pathfinders and life-savers

Authors
Journal
Trends in Neurosciences
0166-2236
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
31
Issue
6
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.tins.2008.03.002
Disciplines
  • Biology
  • Chemistry

Abstract

Cation channels of the TRP superfamily are widely expressed in the nervous system, and important progress has been made in elucidating the gating properties and physiological roles of neuronal TRPs. Recent studies have firmly established the role of temperature-sensitive TRPs (thermoTRPs) as the principal molecular thermometers in the peripheral sensory system, and provided the first molecular insight into the mechanisms underlying the exquisite thermo- and chemosensitivity of these channels. Moreover, accumulating evidence implicates TRP channels in the development of the central nervous system. In particular, Ca 2+ influx via TRPC channels appears to be a critical component of the signalling cascade that mediates the guidance of growth cones and survival of neurons in response to chemical cues such as neurotrophins or Netrin-1.

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