Beyond Ion Homeostasis: Hypomagnesemia, Transient Receptor Potential Melastatin Channel 7, Mitochondrial Function, and Inflammation

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As the second most abundant intracellular divalent cation, magnesium (Mg2+) is essential for cell functions, such as ATP production, protein/DNA synthesis, protein activity, and mitochondrial function. Mg2+ plays a critical role in heart rhythm, muscle contraction, and blood pressure. A significant decline in Mg2+ intake has been reported in developed countries because of the increased consumption of processed food and filtered/deionized water, which can lead to hypomagnesemia (HypoMg). HypoMg is commonly observed in cardiovascular diseases, such as heart failure, hypertension, arrhythmias, and diabetic cardiomyopathy, and HypoMg is a predictor for cardiovascular and all-cause mortality. On the other hand, Mg2+ supplementation has shown significant therapeutic effects in cardiovascular diseases. Some of the effects of HypoMg have been ascribed to changes in Mg2+ participation in enzyme activity, ATP stabilization, enzyme kinetics, and alterations in Ca2+, Na+, and other cations. In this manuscript, we discuss new insights into the pathogenic mechanisms of HypoMg that surpass previously described effects. HypoMg causes mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress, and inflammation. Many of these effects can be attributed to the HypoMg-induced upregulation of a Mg2+ transporter transient receptor potential melastatin 7 channel (TRMP7) that is also a kinase. An increase in kinase signaling mediated by HypoMg-induced TRPM7 transcriptional upregulation, independently of any change in Mg2+ transport function, likely seems responsible for many of the effects of HypoMg. Therefore, Mg2+ supplementation and TRPM7 kinase inhibition may work to treat the sequelae of HypoMg by preventing increased TRPM7 kinase activity rather than just altering ion homeostasis. Since many diseases are characterized by oxidative stress or inflammation, Mg2+ supplementation and TRPM7 kinase inhibition may have wider implications for other diseases by acting to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3920
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 2023

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  • cardiovascular diseases
  • inflammation
  • mitochondria
  • oxidative stress
  • therapeutics


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