Unless otherwise stated all data on this page refer to the human proteins. Gene information is provided for human (Hs), mouse (Mm) and rat (Rn).


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CFTR, a 12TM, ABC transporter-type protein, is a cAMP-regulated epithelial cell membrane Cl- channel involved in normal fluid transport across various epithelia. Of the 1700 mutations identified in CFTR, the most common is the deletion mutant ΔF508 (a class 2 mutation) which results in impaired trafficking of CFTR and reduces its incorporation into the plasma membrane causing cystic fibrosis (reviewed in [3]). Channels carrying the ΔF508 mutation that do traffic to the plasma membrane demonstrate gating defects. Thus, pharmacological restoration the function of the ΔF508 mutant would require a compound that embodies ‘corrector’ (i.e. facilitates folding and trafficking to the cell surface) and ‘potentiator’ (i.e. promotes opening of channels at the cell surface) activities [3]. In addition to acting as an anion channel per se, CFTR may act as a regulator of several other conductances including inhibition of the epithelial Na channel (ENaC), calcium activated chloride channels (CaCC) and volume regulated anion channel (VRAC), activation of the outwardly rectifying chloride channel (ORCC), and enhancement of the sulphonylurea sensitivity of the renal outer medullary potassium channel (ROMK2), (reviewed in [7]). CFTR also regulates TRPV4, which provides the Ca2+ signal for regulatory volume decrease in airway epithelia [2]. The activities of CFTR and the chloride-bicarbonate exchangers SLC26A3 (DRA) and SLC26A6 (PAT1) are mutually enhanced by a physical association between the regulatory (R) domain of CFTR and the STAS domain of the SCL26 transporters, an effect facilitated by PKA-mediated phosphorylation of the R domain of CFTR [5].

Channels and Subunits

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How to cite this family page

Database page citation:

CFTR. Accessed on 30/05/2016. IUPHAR/BPS Guide to PHARMACOLOGY,

Concise Guide to PHARMACOLOGY citation:

Alexander SPH, Kelly E, Marrion N, Peters JA, Benson HE, Faccenda E, Pawson AJ, Sharman JL, Southan C, Davies JA and CGTP Collaborators (2015) The Concise Guide to PHARMACOLOGY 2015/16: Other ion channels. Br J Pharmacol. 172: 5942-5955.