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Endocytosis of G Protein-Coupled Receptors and Their Ligands: Is There a Role in Metal Trafficking?

Katerina Christofides, Resmi Menon, Christopher E Jones
Cell Biochemistry and Biophysics 2018, 76 (3): 329-337
30022374
The prevalence of metal dysregulation in many neurodegenerative and neurocognitive disorders has compelled many studying such diseases to investigate the mechanisms underlying metal regulation in the central nervous system. Metal homoeostasis is often complex, with sophisticated, multilayered pathways in operation. G protein-coupled receptors are omnipresent on cell membranes and have intriguing mechanisms of endocytosis and trafficking that may be useful in metal homoeostasis. Indeed, many receptors and/or their cognate ligands are able to bind metals, and in many cases metals are considered to have neuromodulatory roles as a result of receptor binding. In this mini-review, we outline the structural and functional aspects of G protein-coupled receptors with a focus on the mechanisms leading to endocytosis and cellular trafficking. We further highlight how this may help in the trafficking of metal ions, notably copper.

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