Regulation of neuronal T-type calcium channels

Trends Pharmacol Sci. 2009 Jan;30(1):32-40. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2008 Nov 29.


T-type calcium channels are critically important for regulating neuronal excitability, both in the central and peripheral nervous system, and are essential mediators of hormone secretion. Conversely, T-type channel hyperactivity has been linked to neurological disorders such as absence epilepsy and neuropathic pain. Hence, it is critical to understand the cellular mechanisms that control T-type channel activity, including means of altering expression patterns of the channels, activation of intracellular messenger cascades that directly affect channel activity, and the regulation of alternate splicing of T-type channel genes. Although there is substantial literature dealing with regulation of native T-type channels, the underlying molecular mechanism have only recently been addressed. Here, we highlight recent advances in our understanding of T-type channel regulation, and their implications for brain function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / physiology
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Calcium Channels, T-Type / chemistry
  • Calcium Channels, T-Type / physiology*
  • Calcium Signaling / physiology
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Neurons / chemistry
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Protein Isoforms / chemistry
  • Protein Isoforms / physiology


  • Calcium Channels, T-Type
  • Protein Isoforms