Key Ligand-Gated Ion Channels in CNS Drug Discovery

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15 October 2015

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Ion channel structure, function and involvement in disease have been exquisitely detailed by traditional electrophysiological and molecular biological methods. However, as therapeutic targets, ion channels have lagged behind other classes, such as enzymes and G protein-coupled receptors, due primarily to a lack of high-throughput technology adaptable to modern screening methods. Ligand-gated ion channels (i.e., ion-conducting receptors that are activated by endogenous chemical signals such as neurotransmitters) are particularly challenging targets due to multiple subunit composition and complex modulatory mechanisms. Recent developments in automated electrophysiological platforms, in combination with more traditional methods, provide the tools for screening, profiling and mechanism-of-action studies in ligand-gated ion channels.

This webinar focuses on studies of neurotransmitter-activated ion channels as well as GABAA, NMDA, and nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, in that they are validated therapeutic targets in several neurological disorders.


  • Glenn E. Kirsch, PhD, Associate Director, Pharmacology & Program Management, Charles River
  • Mike Ackley, PhD, Associate Director, In Vitro Pharmacology, Sage Therapeutics

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