Molecule of the Month: Vitamin D Receptor
Vitamin D helps regulate the use of calcium throughout the body
Exploring the Structure
Vitamin D Receptor (PDB entries 1db1 and 3m7r)
Vitamin deficiencies often cause disease, such as night blindness from lack of vitamin A or scurvy from lack of vitamin C. Vitamin D deficiency in young people can lead to rickets, causing the formation of weak bone structure. This can be caused in several ways: vitamin D can be missing from the diet, or the machinery for processing and sensing vitamin D hormone can be faulty. PDB entry 3m7r includes the hormone-binding domain of a mutant receptor that binds only weakly to the hormone, leading to a hereditary form of rickets. To compare this mutant receptor with the native receptor, click on the image for an interactive Jmol.
Topics for Further Discussion
- Researchers are working to develop molecules similar to vitamin D to use as drugs to cure vitamin D related diseases. You can find structures of many of these experimental molecules in the PDB.
- The vitamin D receptor is similar to other nuclear hormone receptors, such as the estrogen receptor. You can use the Compare Structures tool at the PDB to look for these similarities.
Related PDB-101 Resources
- Browse You and Your Health
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- I. Orlov, N. Rochel, D. Moras and B. P. Klaholz (2012) Structure of the full human RXR/VDR nuclear receptor heterodimer complex with its DR3 target DNA. EMBO Journal 31, 291-300.
- J. W. Pike, M. B. Meyer and K. A. Bishop (2012) Regulation of target gene expression by the vitamin D receptor - an update on mechanisms. Review of Endocrinology and Metabolic Disorders 13, 45-55.
- J. Zhu and H. F. DeLuca (2012) Vitamin D 25-hydroxylase - four decades of searching, are we there yet? Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics 523, 30-36.
- M. R. Haussler, C. A. Haussler, L. Bartik, G. K. Whitfield, J. C. Hsieh, S. Slater and P. W. Jurutka (2008) Vitamin D receptor: molecular signaling and actions of nutritional ligands in disease prevention. Nutrition Reviews 66, S98-S112.
November 2012, David Goodsellhttp://doi.org/10.2210/rcsb_pdb/mom_2012_11