Endocrinology and Metabolism

CaSR-mediated interactions between calcium and magnesium homeostasis in mice

Stephen J. Quinn, Alex R. B. Thomsen, Ogo Egbuna, Jian Pang, Khanjan Baxi, David Goltzman, Martin Pollak, Edward M. Brown


Calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) homeostasis are interrelated and share common regulatory hormones, including parathyroid hormone (PTH) and vitamin D. However, the role of the calcium-sensing receptor (CaSR) in Mg homeostasis in vivo is not well understood. We sought to investigate the interactions between Mg and Ca homeostasis using genetic mouse models with targeted inactivation of PTH (PTH KO) or both PTH and the calcium-sensing receptor (CaSR) (double knockout, DKO). Serum Mg is lower in PTH KO and DKO mice than in WT mice on standard chow, whereas supplemental dietary Ca leads to equivalent Mg levels for all three genotypes. Mg loading increases serum Mg in all genotypes; however, the increase in serum Mg is most pronounced in the DKO mice. Serum Ca is increased with Mg loading in the PTH KO and DKO mice but not in the WT mice. Here, too, the hypercalcemia is much greater in the DKO mice. Serum and especially urinary phosphate are reduced during Mg loading, which is likely due to intestinal chelation of phosphate by Mg. Mg loading decreases serum PTH in WT mice and increases serum calcitonin in both WT and PTH KO mice but not DKO mice. Furthermore, Mg loading elevates serum 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D in all genotypes, with greater effects in PTH KO and DKO mice, possibly due to reduced levels of serum phosphorus and FGF23. These hormonal responses to Mg loading and the CaSR's role in regulating renal function may help to explain changes in serum Mg and Ca found during Mg loading.

  • calcium-sensing receptor
  • calcium
  • magnesium
  • parathyroid hormone
  • 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3
  • calcitonin
  • osteocalcin
  • alkaline phosphatase
  • deoxypyridinoline
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