Oestrogens are important sex hormones central to health and disease in both genders that have protective effects on the cardiovascular and metabolic systems. These hormones act in complex ways via both genomic and non-genomic mechanisms. The genomic mechanisms are relatively well characterized, whereas the non-genomic ones are only beginning to be explored. Two oestrogen receptors (ER), ER alpha and ER beta, have been described that act as nuclear transcription factors but can also associate with the plasma membrane and influence cytosolic signalling. ERa has been shown to mediate both anti-atherogenic effects and pro-survival effects in pancreatic beta-cells. In recent years, a third membrane-bound ER has emerged, G protein-coupled receptor 30 or G protein-coupled oestrogen receptor 1 (GPER1), which mediates oestrogenic responses in cardiovascular and metabolic regulation. Both GPER1 knock-out models and pharmacological agents are now available to study GPER1 function. These tools have revealed that GPER1 activation may have several beneficial effects in the cardiovascular system including vasorelaxation, inhibition of smooth muscle cell proliferation, and protection of the myocardium against ischaemia/reperfusion injury, and in the metabolic system including stimulation of insulin release and protection against pancreatic beta-cell apoptosis. Thus, GPER1 is emerging as a candidate therapeutic target in both cardiovascular and metabolic disease.
- Farmakologi och toxikologi