Dissecting mineralocorticoid receptor structure and function

Fraser M. Rogerson, Francine E. Brennan, Peter J. Fuller

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25 Citations (Scopus)


The molecular mechanisms by which aldosterone regulates epithelial sodium transport in the distal colon and the distal nephron remain to be fully elucidated. Aldosterone acts via the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) to induce the expression of genes whose products are involved in sodium transport. The structural basis of MR interactions with aldosterone has been examined by creating chimeras of the MR and the closely related glucocorticoid receptor; we have exploited differences in ligand-binding specificity to determine the region(s) of the MR that confer aldosterone-binding specificity. These findings have been related to a three-dimensional model of the MR based on the crystal structure of the progesterone receptor. These studies have been extended to include the characterisation of interactions between the N- and C-termini of the MR. We have characterised six genes that are regulated in vivo in the distal colon and/or kidney of the rat that are directly and acutely regulated by aldosterone administration: the three subunits of the epithelial sodium channel, serum and glucocorticoid-induced kinase, channel-inducing factor and K-ras2A. These studies provide insights into the molecular pathways that mediate aldosterone-induced amiloride-sensitive epithelial sodium transport.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)389-396
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Issue number2-5
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Aldosterone
  • Cortisol
  • Hypertension
  • Spironolactone

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