ABC transporters in the CNS - An inventory

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

101 Scopus citations


In the present review we provide a summary of ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters in the central nervous system (CNS). Our review is focused on transporters of the ABC A, B, C, D, and G families that have been detected in the cells of the neurovascular unit/blood-brain barrier including brain capillary endothelial cells, pericytes, astrocytes, and neurons, as well as in other brain cells, such as microglia, oligodendrocytes, and choroid plexus epithelial cells. In this review, we provide an overview, organized by ABC family, of transporter expression, localization, and function. We summarize recent findings on ABC transporter regulation in the CNS and address the role of ABC transporters in CNS diseases including brain cancer, seizures/epilepsy, and Alzheimer's disease. Finally, we discuss new therapeutic strategies focused on ABC transporters in CNS disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)656-673
Number of pages18
JournalCurrent Pharmaceutical Biotechnology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2011


  • ABCB1
  • ABCC
  • ABCG2
  • Blood-brain barrier
  • Breast cancer resistance protein
  • CNS
  • Multidrug resistanceassociated protein
  • P-glycoprotein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Pharmaceutical Science


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