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Pharmacol Ther. 1997;73(2):121-46.

The glycine receptor.

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  • 1School of Physiology and Pharmacology, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.


The inhibitory glycine receptor (GlyR) is a member of the ligand-gated ion channel receptor superfamily. The GlyR comprises a pentameric complex that forms a chloride-selective transmembrane channel, which is predominantly expressed in the spinal cord and brain stem. We review the pharmacological and physiological properties of the GlyR and relate this information to more recent insights that have been obtained through the cloning and recombinant expression of the GlyR subunits. We also discuss insights into our understanding of GlyR structure and function that have been obtained by the genetic characterisation of various heritable disorders of glycinergic neurotransmission.

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