Metabotropic glutamate receptors: Beyond the regulation of synaptic transmission

Ferdinando Nicoletti, Giuseppe Battaglia, Marianna Storto, Richard T. Ngomba, Luisa Iacovelli, Antonietta Arcella, Roberto Gradini, Patrizio Sale, Liborio Rampello, Teresa De Vita, Roberto Di Marco, Daniela Melchiorri, Valeria Bruno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Metabotropic glutamate (mGlu) receptors are G-protein coupled receptors activated by glutamate, the major excitatory neurotransmitter of the CNS. A growing body of evidence suggests that the function of mGlu receptors is not restricted to the regulation of synaptic transmission. mGlu receptors are expressed in a variety of peripheral cells, including inter alia hepatocytes, pancreatic cells, osteoblasts and immune cells. Within the immunological synapses, mGlu receptors expressed by T cells might contribute to the vast array of signals generated by the antigen-presenting cells. mGlu receptors are also found in embryonic and neural stem cells. This suggests their involvement in the pathophysiology of brain tumors, which likely originates from cancer stem cells similar to neural stem cells. Ligands of mGlu3 and mGlu4 receptors are potential candidates for the experimental treatment of malignant gliomas and medulloblastomas, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Issue numberSUPPL 1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2007


  • Allosteric modulators
  • Antigen presenting cells
  • Brain tumors
  • Immunological synapse
  • Metabotropic glutamate receptors
  • Stem cells

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Endocrine and Autonomic Systems
  • Psychology(all)

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