Mammalian ABCG-transporters, sterols and lipids: To bind perchance to transport?

Ian D. Kerr, Ella Hutchison, Louise Gerard, Shereen M. Aleidi, Ingrid C. Gelissen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Members of the ATP binding cassette (ABC) transporter family perform a critical function in maintaining lipid homeostasis in cells as well as the transport of drugs. In this review, we provide an update on the ABCG-transporter subfamily member proteins, which include the homodimers ABCG1, ABCG2 and ABCG4 as well as the heterodimeric complex formed between ABCG5 and ABCG8. This review focusses on progress made in this field of research with respect to their function in health and disease and the recognised transporter substrates. We also provide an update on post-translational regulation, including by transporter substrates, and well as the involvement of microRNA as regulators of transporter expression and activity. In addition, we describe progress made in identifying structural elements that have been recognised as important for transport activity. We furthermore discuss the role of lipids such as cholesterol on the transport function of ABCG2, traditionally thought of as a drug transporter, and provide a model of potential cholesterol binding sites for ABCG2.

Original languageEnglish
Article number158860
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids
Issue number3
Early online date11 Dec 2020
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2021


  • ABC transporters
  • Cholesterol
  • Half-transporters
  • Lipids


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