The endoplasmic reticulum: folding, calcium homeostasis, signaling, and redox control

Antioxid Redox Signal. Sep-Oct 2006;8(9-10):1391-418. doi: 10.1089/ars.2006.8.1391.

Abstract

The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) plays a major role in regulating synthesis, folding, and orderly transport of proteins. It is also essentially involved in various cellular signaling processes, primarily by its function as a dynamic Ca(2+) store. Compared to the cytosol, oxidizing conditions are found in the ER that allow oxidation of cysteine residues in nascent polypeptide chains to form intramolecular disulfide bonds. However, compounds and enzymes such as PDI that catalyze disulfide bonds become reduced and have to be reoxidized for further catalytic cycles. A number of enzymes, among them products of the ERO1 gene, appear to provide oxidizing equivalents, and oxygen appears to be the final oxidant in aerobic living organisms. Thus, protein oxidation in the ER is connected with generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Changes in the redox state and the presence of ROS also affect the Ca(2+) homeostasis by modulating the functionality of ER-based channels and buffering chaperones. In addition, a close relationship exists between oxidative stress and ER stress, which both may activate signaling events leading to a rebalance of folding capacity and folding demand or to cell death. Thus, redox homeostasis appears to be a prerequisite for proper functioning of the ER.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium / metabolism*
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / physiology*
  • Homeostasis
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Protein Folding*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*

Substances

  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Calcium