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University of Hawaii: Neurotransmission


Today’s lecture costs 61 minutes.  We seem to be running out of lectures from this dude.  If so we’ll move on. 



The neuron is the basic cell of the nervous system.   Signals out are efferent, in are afferent.  APs cause NT release from the synaptic terminals.  NTs are stored in packets called vesicles. 

The space is the synapse between the terminal and the muslce/organ/neuron.  Membrane bound protein receptors on the post-synaptic terminal. 

There are ACh, dopamine, Nor, Epi, Serotonin, and GABA. 


Acetyl CoA is made by mt as a part of energy transfer.  Lecithin has fatty acids that contain choline.  The Na/K pump is used to get choline into the cell.  Hemicholiniums block this mechanism. 

Neuromuscular junctions use ACh and are nicotinic receptors.  Myasthenia gravis causes weakness by blocking ACh receptors with antibodies Y. 

Parasympathetic smooth muscle is also affected by ACh.  It’s receptor type is muscarinic. 


Tyrosine makes dopamine makes nor makes epi.  Used in ANS signaling.  Sympathetic smooth muscle movement by epi and nor, receptor type is alpha and beta. 

catecholamines=dop nor epi

To remove NT, pump it out or break it down.  ACh esterases breaks down ACh in the synapse.  Block AE, get more ACh in the synapse.  SSRIs – Block uptake pumps, more sero in synapse. 


Opening ion channels causes a voltage change across the membrane.  It’s an instant on/off switch.

Secondary messenger activation allows complex chemical reactions to occur.  Gradual metabolic change. 

receptor regulation, metabolism, DNA from cAMP activation.

CAMP is a secondary messenger.

Phosphodiesterase removes cAMP.  DPE Caffeine increases cAMP. 

Ionotropics open ion channels.  Metabotropics activate secondary messenger systems. 

Na/K pumps work by Na out, K in, fueled by ATP.

Serum is ECF.  In the ECF, the value of Na is 135, K is 3. 

An AP is a wave of voltage change from the opening and closing of ion channels.  Na in, K out.  opening Ca channels allows NT release. 

Botulism is caused by botulinum; 1 ug is lethal.  Blocks nerve function causing respiratory and musculoskeletal paralysis. 

ACh = choline + acetate

Cholinomimetics mimic ACh – nicotine, muscarine.  Block AE. 

MAO breaks down catecholamines.



Tissues: nervous, muscular, connective, epithelial

Epithelial: simple/stratified/pseudo   cuboidal/columnar/squamous

Categories: Uncategorized
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