Radioligand Binding Assays

  • S. J. Enna
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 72)


Early work aimed at examining the properties of chemical transmission focused on presynaptic events such as neurotransmitter synthesis, degradation, accumulation and release. In contrast, because of technical limitations, less information was obtained in regard to the biochemical events associated with neurotransmitter receptors. This situation has changed dramatically in the recent years due to the development of techniques which make possible the identification and characterization of these sites. One of the more powerful methods for this purpose has been the radioligand binding assay (Yamamura et al, 1978). With this procedure it is possible to label selectively that portion of the synaptic membrane to which the neurotransmitter must attach in order to alter cellular activity. Because of its simplicity and power, the radioligand binding assay has become one of the more popular tools in neurobiological research. Using this procedure it is possible to study receptor site number, kinetic characteristics, pharmacological properties, and their relationship to other membrane components. Moreover, binding assays have been useful in examining the effects of drugs and disease on neurotransmitter receptors, and the procedure has been adapted for use as a simple and sensitive analytical method for measuring the concentration of neurotransmitters and drugs.


Binding Assay Neurotransmitter Receptor Synaptic Membrane Ligand Binding Assay Radioreceptor Assay 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. J. Enna
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Pharmacology and of Neurobiology and AnatomyUniversity of Texas Medical School at HoustonHoustonUSA

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