Emerging roles of protease-activated receptors (PARs) in the modulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity

Rachel Price, Nicola Biagio Mercuri, Ada Ledonne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Protease-activated receptors (PARs) are a class of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) with a unique mechanism of activation, prompted by a proteolytic cleavage in their N-terminal domain that uncovers a tethered ligand, which binds and stimulates the same receptor. PARs subtypes (PAR1- 4) have well-documented roles in coagulation, hemostasis, and inflammation, and have been deeply investigated for their function in cellular survival/degeneration, while their roles in the brain in physiological conditions remain less appreciated. Here, we describe PARs’ effects in the modulation of neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity. Available evidence, mainly concerning PAR1-mediated and PAR2-mediated regulation of glutamatergic and GABAergic transmission, supports that PARs are important modulators of synaptic efficacy and plasticity in normal conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number869
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2 2021


  • GABA
  • Glutamate
  • Matrix metalloproteases
  • Protease-activated receptors
  • Serine proteases
  • Synaptic plasticity
  • Synaptic transmission

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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