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Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2012;2012:1374-7. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2012.6346194.

Influence of ionotropic receptor location on their dynamics at glutamatergic synapses.

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Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Southern California, 1042 Downey Way, DRB Building, Los Angeles, CA 90089-111, USA.


In this paper we study the effects of the location of ionotropic receptors, especially AMPA and NMDA receptors, on their function at excitatory glutamatergic synapses. As few computational models only allow to evaluate the influence of receptor location on state transition and receptor dynamics, we present an elaborate computational model of a glutamatergic synapse that takes into account detailed parametric models of ionotropic receptors along with glutamate diffusion within the synaptic cleft. Our simulation results underscore the importance of the wide spread distribution of AMPA receptors which is required to avoid massive desensitization of these receptors following a single glutamate release event while NMDA receptor location is potentially optimal relative to the glutamate release site thus, emphasizing the contribution of location dependent effects of the two major ionotropic receptors to synaptic efficacy.

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