Cytosolic Ca2+ buffers

Cold Spring Harb Perspect Biol. 2010 Nov;2(11):a004051. doi: 10.1101/cshperspect.a004051. Epub 2010 Oct 13.


"Ca(2+) buffers," a class of cytosolic Ca(2+)-binding proteins, act as modulators of short-lived intracellular Ca(2+) signals; they affect both the temporal and spatial aspects of these transient increases in [Ca(2+)](i). Examples of Ca(2+) buffers include parvalbumins (α and β isoforms), calbindin-D9k, calbindin-D28k, and calretinin. Besides their proven Ca(2+) buffer function, some might additionally have Ca(2+) sensor functions. Ca(2+) buffers have to be viewed as one of the components implicated in the precise regulation of Ca(2+) signaling and Ca(2+) homeostasis. Each cell is equipped with proteins, including Ca(2+) channels, transporters, and pumps that, together with the Ca(2+) buffers, shape the intracellular Ca(2+) signals. All of these molecules are not only functionally coupled, but their expression is likely to be regulated in a Ca(2+)-dependent manner to maintain normal Ca(2+) signaling, even in the absence or malfunctioning of one of the components.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Buffers
  • Calbindin 1
  • Calbindin 2
  • Calbindins
  • Calcium / metabolism*
  • Calcium Signaling*
  • Cations, Divalent / metabolism
  • Cytosol / metabolism*
  • Homeostasis
  • Humans
  • Parvalbumins / metabolism
  • S100 Calcium Binding Protein G / metabolism


  • Buffers
  • CALB1 protein, human
  • CALB2 protein, human
  • Calbindin 1
  • Calbindin 2
  • Calbindins
  • Cations, Divalent
  • Parvalbumins
  • S100 Calcium Binding Protein G
  • S100G protein, human
  • Calcium