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Papers of the Week

Papers: 20 Jan 2024 - 26 Jan 2024

2024 Jan 21

Mol Pain


Long-term plasticity of NMDA GluN2B (NR2B) receptor in anterior cingulate cortical synapses.


Zhuo M


The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is a key cortical area for pain perception, emotional fear and anxiety. Cortical excitation is thought to be the major mechanism for chronic pain and its related emotional disorders such as anxiety and depression. GluN2B (or called NR2B) containing NMDA receptors play critical roles for such excitation. Not only does the activation of GluN2B contributes to the induction of the postsynaptic form of LTP (post-LTP), long-term upregulation of GluN2B subunits through tyrosine phosphorylation were also detected after peripheral injury. In addition, it has been reported that presynaptic NMDA receptors may contribute to the modulation of the release of glutamate from presynaptic terminals in the ACC. It is believed that inhibiting subtypes of NMDA receptors and/or downstream signaling proteins may serve as a novel therapeutic mechanism for future treatment of chronic pain, anxiety, and depression.