Acutely isolated rat central neurons were recorded by whole-cell voltage-clamp and responses to a class of excitatory amino acid N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) were examined. Rapid application of NMDA evoked inward current consisted of a fast initial peak followed by a sustained component. Glycine potentiated both initial and desensitized states of the NMDA response with identical concentration-dependence. The initial response, but not the sustained component, was abolished when low concentration of NMDA was pre-applied, and glycine could not reverse the desensitization. This evidence suggests that the NMDA receptor desensitization is sensitive to NMDA but not to glycine, and support the hypothesis that glycine initiates the activation of NMDA receptors rather than that glycine prevents desensitization at NMDA receptors in these cells.
- Allosteric regulation
- Central nervous system neuron
- Excitatory amino acid
- Ion channel
- Whole-cell voltage-clamp