Ion channels in digestive health and disease

Andrew P. Feranchak

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The field of ion channel research has grown tremendously since the first ion channel was cloned in the early 1980's. Techniques such as patch clamp recording and x-ray crystallography have revolutionized the study of ion channel biology, and newer techniques continue to be developed promising continued progress in clarifying the relationship between channel structure and function. Many channelopathies have been discovered and more will likely be described as the molecular identity of ion channels continues to be unraveled. As ion channels contribute to so many basic cellular processes, it is anticipated that elucidating their function and role will contribute to our basic understanding of human physiology. Additionally, understanding the complex regulation of these proteins will hopefully suggest new therapeutic interventions to treat many diseases. In the gastrointestinal system, targeting ion channels may provide treatment strategies for a number of disorders including motility disturbances, visceral pain syndromes, diarrheal illnesses, pancreatic disease, cholestasis, and liver injury associated with oxidative stress, ischemia/reperfusion, steatosis, and organ preservation injury to name just a few. There is still much work to be done to define the many ion channels of the gastrointestinal system, however it promises to be an exciting time with many rewards!

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)230-241
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2003

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Gastroenterology


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