Even though the protein has been identified earlier, its function was unknown until recently. In 2005, it was discovered that STIM1 functions as a calcium sensor in the endoplasmic reticulum. Upon activation of the IP3 receptor, the calcium concentration in the endoplasmic reticulum decreases, which is sensed by STIM1, via its EF hand domain. STIM1 activates the "store-operated" ORAI1 calcium ion channels in the plasma membrane, via intracellular STIM1 movement, clustering under plasma membrane and protein protein interaction with ORAI isoforms.2-Aminoethoxydiphenyl borate (2-APB) and 4-chloro-3-ethylphenol (4-CEP) cause STIM1 clustering in a cell and prevent STIM1 moving toward plasma membrane.
^Williams RT, Senior PV, Van Stekelenburg L, Layton JE, Smith PJ, Dziadek MA (May 2002). "Stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1), a transmembrane protein with growth suppressor activity, contains an extracellular SAM domain modified by N-linked glycosylation". Biochim Biophys Acta1596 (1): 131–7. doi:10.1016/S0167-4838(02)00211-X. PMID11983428.