Acetylcholine Receptor Related Genes Expressed in the Nervous System
In this report, we describe how the cDNA probes encoding the four subunits of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (AChR) from Torpedo electroplax (1) have been used to isolate and begin the study of the corresponding genes in the avian genome. In addition, we show that the set of genes encoding the AChR at the avian neuromuscular junction can be used to isolate related genes, some or all of which are transcribed in the peripheral and central nervous system and encode transmembrane proteins whose functions are as yet unknown. We speculate that these novel proteins are involved in synaptic transmission or in its regulation. It is likely that several sets of AChR-related proteins are specifically synthesized to serve different functions at different levels in the nervous system: the genes that encode them form a large family whose members have not been all identified yet.
KeywordsAcetylcholine Alpha3 Human Alpha
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