The reactive plasticity of hippocampal ionotropic glutamate receptors in animal epilepsies

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Ionotropic glutamate receptors (iGluRs) mediate the synaptic and metabolic actions of glutamate. These iGluRs are classified within the α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA)-type, kainate-type, and N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-type functional receptor families. The iGluR assemblies are regulated by transcription, alternative splicing, and cytoplasmic post-translational modifications. The iGluR subunit proteins are transported from the endoplasmic reticulum, inserted into the synaptic membranes, and anchored at their action site by different scaffolding and interacting proteins. The functional properties of iGluRs depend on their subunit composition, the amino acid sequence of the protein domains, and the scaffolding proteins in the synaptic membranes. The iGluRs are removed from the membranes by enzymatic action and endocytosis. Hippocampal iGluRs are rearranged through the upregulation and downregulation of the subunits following deafferentation and epileptic seizures. The rearrangement of iGluRs and the alteration of their subunit composition transform neurons into “pathological” cells, determining the further plasticity or pathology of the hippocampal formation. In the present review, we summarize the expression of AMPA, kainate, and NMDA receptor subunits following deafferentation, repeated mild seizures, and status epilepticus. We compare our results to literature descriptions, and draw conclusions as to the reactive plasticity of iGluRs in the hippocampus.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1030
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2019


  • AMPA receptor
  • Epilepsy
  • Glutamate
  • Hippocampus
  • Kainate receptor
  • NMDA receptor
  • Neuronal plasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry

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