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Biomed Pharmacother. 2016 Oct;83:439-449. doi: 10.1016/j.biopha.2016.07.002. Epub 2016 Jul 15.

The emerging roles of human trace amines and human trace amine-associated receptors (hTAARs) in central nervous system.

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Department of Pharmacology, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009, China. Electronic address:
School of basic medicine and clinical pharmacy, China Pharmaceutical University, Nanjing 210009, China.


Human trace amines (TAs) are endogenous compounds, previously almost ignored in human pathology for many reasons (difficulty of their measurement in biological fluids, unknown receptors for elusive amines), are now considered to play a significant role in synaptic transmission within the central nervous system (CNS) acting as neuromodulators. The recent discovery of a novel family of G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) that includes individual members that are highly specific for TAs indicates a potential role for TAs as vertebrate neurotransmitters or neuromodulators, although the majority of these GPCRs so far have not been demonstrated to be activated by TAs. Human trace amine receptors (including TAAR1 TAAR2 TAAR5 TAAR6 TAAR8 TAAR9) are expressed in the brain and play significant physiological and neuropathological roles by activation of trace amines. We herein discuss the recent findings that provide insights into the functional roles of human trace amines (including P-Octopamine, β phenylethylamine, Tryptamine, Tyramine, Synephrine, 3-Iodothyronamine, 3-Methoxytyramine, N-Methyltyramine, N-Methylphenethylamine) in brain. Furthermore, we discuss the known functions of human trace amine receptors in brain.


Human trace amine associated receptors (TAARs); Human trace amines (TAs); Neuromodulators; Neurotransmitters

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