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Trends Neurosci. 1996 Aug;19(8):339-45.

News on glutamate receptors in glial cells.

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Abteilung Neurophysiologie, Friedrich-Schiller Universität Jena, Germany.


Glutamate (Glu) receptors convey most of the excitatory synaptic transmission in the mammalian CNS. Distinct Glu-receptor genes and different subtypes of glutamate-activated channels are expressed ubiquitously throughout the developing and mature brain in the two major macroglial cell types, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. These glial receptors are found in acutely isolated cells and in brain slices, and are therefore functional in vivo. Glutamate receptors in glial cells are activated during neuronal activity, and their activation modulates gene expression in astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. The proliferation and differentiation of glial precursor cells are also regulated by activation of Glu receptors, suggesting that the excitatory transmitter might be one of the environmental signals that regulate glial-cell development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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