What does this gene do?

Magnesium is the fourth most abundant essential mineral found in the body. It supports the function of cells, tissues and organs by acting as a co-factor for 300 enzymes in the body. This means that it contributes to all 300 of these metabolic processes.

These enzymes play an essential role in:

  • Developing and maintaining the health of bones and teeth
  • The metabolism of your macronutrients namely carbohydrates, fats and proteins
  • May support healthy glucose metabolism.
  • Growth and death of cells and tissues
  • Maintenance of healthy muscle function, including your heart.
  • Energy production within cells
  • Needed for the functioning of nerve cells that control muscle movement
  • Used for production of parathyroid hormone, indirectly regulate calcium in the body

The majority of magnesium is found in on the surface of the bone, here it is thought to help control levels in the body. Magnesium is also found in other areas of the body such as muscles, soft tissues and cell fluids. If poor there is poor dietary intake of magnesium it can worsen symptoms of specific chronic condition like type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and migraines. Dietary sources are about 30-40% of magnesium.

The balance of magnesium is primarily regulated by intestinal absorption and excretion by the kidneys.

The TRPM6 gene provides instructions for the production of a protein, that  acts as a channel. This channel allows the flow of charged atoms of magnesium into cells and tiny amounts of charged calcium atoms.

The channel is found in a structure in the kidneys, the lungs, the surface lining of the large intestine and testes in males. The TRPM6 channel functions to regulate magnesium in the body. If the body needs extra magnesium, the TRPM6 allows the increased absorption of magnesium in the intestine and filters more magnesium through the kidneys. If the body has enough or too much magnesium, the TRPM6 channel will allow magnesium to be excreted from the kidney via urine. To a smaller extent the channel assists in regulating calcium.

The T allele is the risk allele,  and is associated with lower levels of magnesium in the blood and increases risk for hypomagnesemia by 20%.

The TT genotype is observed in the general population at over 90%.

Disclaimer: Please consult with a healthcare professional before any action of supplementation is taken

Other genes that work together: ATP2B1 genotype, this is a common variant along with TRPM6 gene variant that is associated with altered levels of magnesium and hypomagnesemia.


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