Expert Reviews in Molecular Medicine

 



Review Article

PAR-2: structure, function and relevance to human diseases of the gastric mucosa


Atsufumi Kawabata a1c1
a1 Department of Pathophysiology and Therapeutics, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kinki University, 3-4-1 Kowakae, Higashi-Osaka 577-8502, Japan.

Abstract

PAR-2 (protease-activated receptor 2), a G-protein-coupled receptor activated by certain serine proteases such as trypsin and tryptase, is now considered a physiologically important molecule and also a novel target for drug development. PAR-2 is widely distributed in the mammalian body, especially throughout the alimentary system. PAR-2 plays various roles in the alimentary, circulatory, respiratory and neuronal systems. In the gastric mucosa, PAR-2 modulates multiple functions and exerts mucosal cytoprotection mainly by activating sensory neurons. Thus, PAR-2 would appear to be a therapeutic target for treatment of gastric mucosal injury. Agonists and/or antagonists for PAR-2 might also be applicable to the clinical treatment of patients with inflammatory diseases in other organs.


Key Words: protease-activated receptor (PAR); trypsin; tryptase; G-protein-coupled receptor; gastric mucosal cytoprotection; pepsin; acid secretion; mucus; sensory neuron; peptic ulcer.

Correspondence:
c1 Department of Pathophysiology and Therapeutics, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Kinki University, 3-4-1 Kowakae, Higashi-Osaka 577-8502, Japan. Tel: +81 6 6721 2332; Fax: +81 6 6730 1394; E-mail: kawabata@phar.kindai.ac.jp