GABA receptors

Authored by: G. Smart Trevor

Handbook of Ion Channels

Print publication date:  February  2015
Online publication date:  February  2015

Print ISBN: 9781466551404
eBook ISBN: 9781466551428
Adobe ISBN:


 Download Chapter



A functional central nervous system (CNS) relies, at a simplistic level, on the interplay between neuronal excitation that is punctuated, at appropriate times, by neuronal inhibition. For limiting the extent and duration of neuronal excitability, inhibition is important and this is mediated largely by inhibitory neurotransmitters such as GABA and glycine. These transmitters rapidly increase the membrane conductance to anions, effectively shunting excitatory activity. Overall, GABA is the ubiquitous and predominant inhibitory transmitter throughout the CNS, while glycine assumes greater significance in the brainstem and spinal cord (Lynch, 2004; Betz and Laube, 2006; Bowery and Smart, 2006). To cause inhibition, GABA activates specific ionotropic GABAA receptors that are Cl-permeable ligand-gated channels and metabotropic receptors (classified as GABAB receptors that signal via G protein activation to numerous downstream effectors). In this chapter, the focus is on the GABAA receptor family (Rabow et al., 1996; Sieghart and Sperk, 2002; Olsen and Sieghart, 2009).

Search for more...
Back to top

Use of cookies on this website

We are using cookies to provide statistics that help us give you the best experience of our site. You can find out more in our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.