Send to

Choose Destination
Nature. 1991 Jun 27;351(6329):745-8.

Cloning of a cDNA for a glutamate receptor subunit activated by kainate but not AMPA.

Author information

Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, La Jolla, California 92037.


Fast excitatory transmission in the vertebrate central nervous system is mediated mainly by L-glutamate. On the basis of pharmacological, physiological and agonist binding properties, the ionotropic glutamate receptors are classified into NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate), AMPA (alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-isoxazole-4-propionate) and kainate subtypes. Sequence homology between complementary DNA clones encoding non-NMDA glutamate receptor subunits reveals at least two subunit classes: the GluR1 to GluR4 class and the GluR5 class. Here we report the cloning and expression of a functional rat glutamate receptor subunit cDNA, GluR6, which has a very different pharmacology from that of the GluR1-GluR4 class. Receptors generated from the GluR1-GluR4 class have a higher apparent affinity for AMPA than for kainate. When expressed in Xenopus oocytes the homomeric GluR6 receptor is activated by kainate, quisqualate and L-glutamate but not by AMPA, and the apparent affinity for kainate is higher than for receptors from the GluR1-GluR4 class. Desensitization of the receptor was observed with continuous application of agonist. The homomeric GluR6 glutamate receptor exhibits an outwardly rectifying current-voltage relationship. In situ hybridizations reveal a pattern of GluR6 gene expression reminiscent of the binding pattern obtained with [3H]kainate.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group
Loading ...
Support Center