Encyclopedia of Signaling Molecules

2018 Edition
| Editors: Sangdun Choi

ABCA Transporters

  • Esther E. Biswas-FissEmail author
  • Albtool Alturkestani
  • Jazzlyn Jones
  • Joscelyn Korth
  • Stephanie Affet
  • Malissa Ha
  • Subhasis Biswas
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-67199-4_166
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The ABCA subfamily form an intriguing group of transporters whose function relates to lipid homeostasis. Although in several instances, such as with the ABCA6-like subgroup, the exact cellular function and mechanism of action remain unknown, their important physiological role is underscored by the often severe diseases that result from mutations in their genes. Prospects for future research relate back to the degree in which each transporter is understood. For relatively well-characterized transporters such as ABCA1 and ABCA4, a significant amount is known about the prospective ligand and a well-established link between a given monogenic disorder and mutations in the transporter encoding gene exists. Genetic testing for ABCA1, ABCA4, ABCA3,ABCA7, and ABCA12 disease associated variants is available in laboratories in the United States and abroad. For these transporters current and future research aimed at understanding the genotype phenotype (biochemical as well as clinical) correlation is important, so that more accurate prognoses and specific therapies may be implemented. Ultimately, the development of transport assays which can analyze the actual transport event itself, for both mutant and wild type proteins, will need to be developed in order to determine the precise effect of a given mutation on transporter function. In the case of less well understood transporters, such as the ABCA6-like subgroup, fundamental research is required to determine the identity of the transport ligand and how this relates to human health and disease. Finally, defining the role of protein-protein interactions in ABCA proteins is necessary in order to determine the synergistic relationships between the other members of the ABCA and/or ABC protein family as well as to define a given ABCA proteome. Perhaps, the recent identification of ABCA transporters in plants may provide us with additional model systems. Undoubtedly, the roadmap of ABCA disease-associated variants provides scientists and clinicians with a wealth of clues to uncover the secrets of this important class of ABC transporters.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Esther E. Biswas-Fiss
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Albtool Alturkestani
    • 1
  • Jazzlyn Jones
    • 1
  • Joscelyn Korth
    • 1
  • Stephanie Affet
    • 3
  • Malissa Ha
    • 3
  • Subhasis Biswas
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, College of Health SciencesUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA
  2. 2.Department of Molecular BiologyRowan University School of Osteopathic MedicineStratfordUSA
  3. 3.Department of Bioscience Technologies, Program in Biotechnology, JSHPThomas Jefferson UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA
  4. 4.Department of Molecular BiologyRowan UniversityStratfordUSA