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J Gen Physiol. 2018 Aug 6;150(8):1081-1105. doi: 10.1085/jgp.201812032. Epub 2018 Jul 23.

Structure, function, and allosteric modulation of NMDA receptors.

Author information

1
Department of Biomedical and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Center for Biomolecular Structure and Dynamics, University of Montana, Missoula, MT.
2
Department of Pharmacology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA.
3
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor, NY.
4
Departments of Neurobiology & Behavior and Biochemistry & Cell Biology, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY.
5
Department of Neuroscience, Physiology and Pharmacology, University College London, London, UK.
6
Department of Pharmacology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA strayne@emory.edu.

Abstract

NMDA-type glutamate receptors are ligand-gated ion channels that mediate a Ca2+-permeable component of excitatory neurotransmission in the central nervous system (CNS). They are expressed throughout the CNS and play key physiological roles in synaptic function, such as synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. NMDA receptors are also implicated in the pathophysiology of several CNS disorders and more recently have been identified as a locus for disease-associated genomic variation. NMDA receptors exist as a diverse array of subtypes formed by variation in assembly of seven subunits (GluN1, GluN2A-D, and GluN3A-B) into tetrameric receptor complexes. These NMDA receptor subtypes show unique structural features that account for their distinct functional and pharmacological properties allowing precise tuning of their physiological roles. Here, we review the relationship between NMDA receptor structure and function with an emphasis on emerging atomic resolution structures, which begin to explain unique features of this receptor.

PMID:
30037851
PMCID:
PMC6080888
[Available on 2019-02-06]
DOI:
10.1085/jgp.201812032

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