Genetic manipulations of GABAA receptor in mice make inhibition exciting

Stefano Vicini, Pavel Ortinski

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


The inhibitory neurotransmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) plays an important role in brain development and behavior. GABAA receptor subunits knock-out and knock-in mice have proven that GABAA receptors are involved in control of motor coordination, learning, and memory and play a role in anxiety, panic, and epileptogenesis. In addition, these receptors are involved in the molecular mechanisms of action of many drugs and participate actively in cortical plasticity. The use of genetically engineered mice has perhaps never been as successful as in understanding the importance of the heterogeneity of GABAA receptors. We review these findings and speculate on the new directions that the use of mice with altered expression of GABAA receptor subunits may provide.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-120
Number of pages12
JournalPharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2004


  • Benzodiazepine
  • GABA
  • Inhibitory synapses
  • Knock-in
  • Knock-out
  • Neurosteroids
  • Transgenic mice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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