Heteromeric Solute Carriers: Function, Structure, Pathology and Pharmacology

Stephen J. Fairweather*, Nishank Shah, Stefan Brӧer

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    22 Citations (Scopus)


    Solute carriers form one of three major superfamilies of membrane transporters in humans, and include uniporters, exchangers and symporters. Following several decades of molecular characterisation, multiple solute carriers that form obligatory heteromers with unrelated subunits are emerging as a distinctive principle of membrane transporter assembly. Here we comprehensively review experimentally established heteromeric solute carriers: SLC3-SLC7 amino acid exchangers, SLC16 monocarboxylate/H+ symporters and basigin/embigin, SLC4A1 (AE1) and glycophorin A exchanger, SLC51 heteromer Ost α-Ost β uniporter, and SLC6 heteromeric symporters. The review covers the history of the heteromer discovery, transporter physiology, structure, disease associations and pharmacology – all with a focus on the heteromeric assembly. The cellular locations, requirements for complex formation, and the functional role of dimerization are extensively detailed, including analysis of the first complete heteromer structures, the SLC7-SLC3 family transporters LAT1-4F2hc, b0,+AT-rBAT and the SLC6 family heteromer B0AT1-ACE2. We present a systematic analysis of the structural and functional aspects of heteromeric solute carriers and conclude with common principles of their functional roles and structural architecture.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
    Number of pages115
    Publication statusPublished - 2021

    Publication series

    NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
    ISSN (Print)0065-2598
    ISSN (Electronic)2214-8019


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