In recent years, it has been recognized that there is a metabolic coupling between the cytosol, ER/SR and mitochondria. In this cross-talk, mitochondrial Ca2+ homeostasis and ATP production and supply play a major role. The primary transporter of adenine nucleotides, Ca2+and other metabolites into and out of mitochondria is the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC) located at the outer mitochondrial membrane, at a crucial position in the cell. VDAC has been established as a key player in mitochondrial metabolite and ion signaling and it has also been proposed that VDAC is present in extramitochondrial membranes. Thus, regulation of VDAC, as the main interface between mitochondrial and cellular metabolism, by other molecules is of utmost importance. This article reviews localization and function of VDAC, and focuses on VDAC as a skeletal muscle sarcoplasmic reticulum channel. The regulation of VDAC activity by associated proteins and by inhibitors is also presented. Several aspects of the physiological relevance of VDAC to Ca2+ homeostasis and mitochondria-mediated apoptosis will be discussed.
The Journal of Membrane Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Jan 1, 2005
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