Electrophysiological Investigation of D-1/D-2 Receptor Interactions in the Substantia Nigra and Basal Ganglia
The potential for subtle pharmacological modulation of brain function through drugs selective for specific neurotransmitter receptor subtypes has prompted investigation of the roles of the different dopamine receptors in the CNS. Two clearly distinct dopamine receptor subtypes, D-1 and D-2 receptors, have been described. It has also been suggested that dopamine autoreceptors may constitute a third dopamine receptor subtype, significantly different from the D-2 receptors located on cells postsynaptic to the dopamine neurons. In recent studies, we have used neurophysiological techniques to determine how neuronal activity in the basal ganglia is affected by drugs believed selective for one or another of these receptor subtypes. These studies have raised some interesting issues with regard to the relative roles of the receptor subtypes and suggest that many factors may need to be considered in order to understand the mechanisms underlying a dopamine agonist’s net effect.
KeywordsDopamine Receptor Dopamine Agonist Globus Pallidus Dopamine Neuron Dopamine Cell
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