Neuron function question

Kalman Rubinson kr4 at nyu.edu
Fri Oct 24 14:03:32 EST 2003


On Fri, 24 Oct 2003 18:39:45 GMT, "David Todtman"
<dtodtmanREMOVETHHIS at shaw.ca> wrote:

>Kal,
>It is very helpful to have your response.
>
>I think you are correct about my need to get a more explicit text.
>
>Can you note for me how a receptor is caused to be up-regulated or
>down-regulated?  I would think that molecule/receptor binding is a 'digital'
>function.  I.e., if the ligand molecule encounters a fitting receptor it
>either binds or does not.  One cannot have a partial bind or a 'bigger
>bind.'  Eh?  Does the internal portion of the receptor, in up-regulation,
>release more of its chemical?

1.  Any receptor-mediated mechanism might be modulated by co-factors
or by other cellular mechanisms (like other metabotropic receptor
events).  In general though, you might think of it as a population
effect.  If more (or fewer) are simultaneously activated or serially
activated, the internal effect can be modulated proportionately

>Also, back to the question of ionotropic vs metabotropic functions, is
>dopamine an example of a ligand that causes (mostly) metabotropic change?

Yes but DA has a number of different receptors which do different
things.

>Again, the responses to my questions are very helpful to me.

Good.

>  (This is interesting stuff.)

I agree.

KR







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