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Assembly and trafficking of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors NEIL S. MILLAR & PATRICIA C. HARKNESS
 

Summary: Assembly and trafficking of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors
(Review)
NEIL S. MILLAR & PATRICIA C. HARKNESS
Department of Pharmacology, University College London, London, UK
(Received 30 November 2007 and in revised form 25 February 2008)
Abstract
Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are members of an extensive super-family of neurotransmitter-gated ion
channels. In humans, nAChRs are expressed within the nervous system and at the neuromuscular junction and are
important targets for pharmaceutical drug discovery. They are also the site of action for neuroactive pesticides in insects and
other invertebrates. Nicotinic receptors are complex pentameric transmembrane proteins which are assembled from a large
family of subunits; seventeen nAChR subunits (a1-a10, b1-b4, g, d and o) have been identified in vertebrate species. This
review will discuss nAChR subunit diversity and factors influencing receptor assembly and trafficking.
Keywords: Nicotinic receptor, acetylcholine receptor, assembly, trafficking
Introduction
Nicotinicacetylcholinereceptors(nAChRs)aremem-
bers of a super-family of ligand-gated ion channels
which also includes receptors for the neurotransmit-
ters adenosine triphosphate (ATP), g-aminobutyric
acid (GABA), glutamate, glycine and 5-hydroxytryp-
tamine (5-HT) [1,2]. Nicotinic receptors are also

  

Source: Alford, Simon - Department of Biological Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine