Estrogen Receptor beta (ER beta) is a nuclear hormone receptor which is highly homologous to ER alpha. It functions as a ligand-activated transcription factor, binding to estrogens and activation expression of reporter genes containing estrogen response elements (ERE) in an estrogen-dependent manner (1). Studies have shown ER beta play a role in modulation of the effects of ER alpha, possibly by inhibiting the transcription activation of ER alpha (2). ER beta is expressed in many tissues, including human thymus, spleen, ovary and testis. It is also highly expressed in endothelial and vascular smooth muscles cells, and the expression of ER beta in these areas has a positive correlation with increased coronary artery plaque (3).
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