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Nutrient Transport in the Mammary Gland: Calcium, Trace Minerals and Water Soluble Vitamins

  • Nicolas Montalbetti
  • Marianela G. Dalghi
  • Christiane Albrecht
  • Matthias A. Hediger
Article

Abstract

Milk nutrients are secreted by epithelial cells in the alveoli of the mammary gland by several complex and highly coordinated systems. Many of these nutrients are transported from the blood to the milk via transcellular pathways that involve the concerted activity of transport proteins on the apical and basolateral membranes of mammary epithelial cells. In this review, we focus on transport mechanisms that contribute to the secretion of calcium, trace minerals and water soluble vitamins into milk with particular focus on the role of transporters of the SLC series as well as calcium transport proteins (ion channels and pumps). Numerous members of the SLC family are involved in the regulation of essential nutrients in the milk, such as the divalent metal transporter-1 (SLC11A2), ferroportin-1 (SLC40A1) and the copper transporter CTR1 (SLC31A1). A deeper understanding of the physiology and pathophysiology of these transporters will be of great value for drug discovery and treatment of breast diseases.

Keywords

SLC transporters ABC transporters Calcium transporters and breast cancer 

Abbreviations

ABC

ATP-binding cassette

BCRP

Breast cancer resistance protein

CP

Ceruloplasmin

CTR

Copper transporter

Dcytb

Duodenal cytochrome b

DMT1

Divalent metal-ion transporter 1

ER

Endoplasmic reticulum

FPN

Ferroportin-1

HEP

Hepcidin

IRE

Iron-responsive element

IRP

Iron-regulatory proteins

MECs

Mammary epithelial cells

MRP

Multidrug resistance associated protein

PCFT

Proton-coupled folate transporter

PMCA

Plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase

RFC

Reduced folate carrier

RFVT

Riboflavin transporters

SERCA

Sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca2+- ATPase

SLC

Solute carrier

SMCT

Sodium-coupled monocarboxylate cotransporters

SMVT

Sodium-coupled multivitamin transporter

SPCA

Secretory pathway Ca2+-ATPase

STEAP

Six-transmembrane epithelial antigen of the prostate

SVCT

Sodium-coupled vitamin C transporter

TfR

Transferrin receptor-1

TRP

Transient receptor potential

ZIP

ZRT, IRT-like Protein

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, and Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research, NCCR TransCureUniversity of BernBernSwitzerland

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