GABA(B) receptors as potential therapeutic targets

Vacher, Claire-Marie and Bettler, Bernhard. (2003) GABA(B) receptors as potential therapeutic targets. Current drug targets. CNS and neurological disorders, Vol. 2, no. 4. pp. 248-259.

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Official URL: http://edoc.unibas.ch/dok/A5262252

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gamma-Aminobutyric acid-B (GABA(B)) receptors are broadly expressed in the nervous system and have been implicated in a wide variety of neurological and psychiatric disorders. To date the only GABA(B) drug on the market is the agonist baclofen (Lioresal((R))) that is used to treat severe spasticity of cerebral and spinal origin. In addition baclofen is effective in animal models for many central and peripheral disorders, but side-effects and the development of tolerance prohibited a more widespread use of this drug in man. Similarly GABA(B) antagonists show great therapeutic promise but their shortcomings, e.g. the lack of brain penetration or some proconvulsive potential, prevented clinical development. The cloning of GABA(B) receptors in 1997 revived interest in these receptors as drug targets. The long-awaited availability of the tools that were necessary to develop more selective and safer drugs stimulated an impressive activity in the field. The demonstration that GABA(B) receptors needed to heteromerize for function provided new insights into the structure of G-protein coupled receptors in general and enabled to identify allosteric GABA(B) drugs. Gene knockout mice revealed neuronal systems that are under tonic GABA(B) control and therefore best suited for therapeutic intervention. Significant advances were made in clarifying the relationship between GABA(B) receptors and the receptors for gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB), a drug of abuse. Here we provide and update on the molecular composition, the physiology and the pharmacology of GABA(B) receptors and discuss to what extent our current knowledge influences ongoing and future drug discovery efforts.
Faculties and Departments:03 Faculty of Medicine > Departement Biomedizin > Division of Physiology > Molecular Neurobiology Synaptic Plasticity (Bettler)
UniBasel Contributors:Bettler, Bernhard
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Bentham Science Publishers
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:22 Mar 2012 14:26
Deposited On:22 Mar 2012 13:51

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