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Current time:0:00Total duration:6:36

Video transcript

in this video I want to talk about the types of neurotransmitter receptors neurons are often referred to as excitatory or inhibitory but more accurately it's the synapse that's excitatory or inhibitory and even more specifically it's the combination of the neurotransmitter that's released at the synapse and the receptor that' binds to on the postsynaptic membrane because many neurotransmitters can bind to multiple types of receptors so that the neurotransmitter can sometimes be excitatory and it can sometimes be inhibitory to the target cell so that this axon terminal might be releasing this neurotransmitter here at the synapse and perhaps when it binds to this purple receptor that causes an excitatory potential in the target cell but if it binds to this orange receptor on the postsynaptic membrane that would cause inhibition of the target cell would cause an inhibitory potential when the target cell is another neuron excitatory or inhibitory synapses can be scattered around all over the surface of the neuron or there are many neurons where the dendrites are receiving predominantly excitatory synapses so that there can be a large number of neurons synapsing on the dendrites and releasing neurotransmitters that will cause depolarizations in the dendrites so let me just draw a little purple pluses in here to represent that these are excitatory synapses and then many neurons like this will have more inhibitory synapses on the soma so I'll just draw some little orange minus signs here to represent these er could be inhibitory synapses on the soma and then often neurons have synapses on their axon terminals so that other axon terminals are synapsing on the axon terminal of the target neuron and these will often be a mix of excitatory and inhibitory synapses and there's a big variety in how the synapses are set up on neurons and there would be a mix of some excitatory and inhibitory synapses at all these locations but for neurons that are set up like this kind of a general way of thinking about how information would flow through the neuron is that they can receive lots of excitatory input through the dendrites causing depolarizations to spread down the Dendera it's into the soma but then if these neurons are inhibiting the soma that can block those depolarizations from reaching the trigger zone to trigger an action potential and then when action potentials are conducted from the trigger zone down the axon to the axon terminal the excitatory and inhibitory synapses on the axon terminal can increase or decrease the amount of neurotransmitter that is released when an action potential reaches the axon terminal so that there can be fine-tuning of the output of the neuron at multiple levels all the way from dendrites through the soma and the actual individual axon terminals can have their output turned up or turned down in response to the information flowing in from all these synapses so that one way you can categorize synapses is if they're predominantly excitatory or predominantly inhibitory but there are some other big differences in neurotransmitter receptors and how they pass information from neural transmitters in the chemical synapse to the target cell so let me just draw a big axon terminal here that's releasing neurotransmitter into the synaptic cleft and this will be the postsynaptic membrane of the target cell and I'm going to try the two big types of neurotransmitter receptors here let me draw this one in gray it's a little receptor to bind at a neurotransmitter and I'll draw this other one and yellow over here with its little pocket to buy into its neurotransmitter so this first type of neurotransmitter receptor is called ionotropic io no tropic and iona tropic neurotransmitter receptors are ligand gated ion channels so they have ion right in the name and when their ligand binds to the receptor which in this case is their neurotransmitter they open and allow certain ions to pass and when the neurotransmitter leaves the receptor then they close and they don't let ions pass through anymore the iona tropic neurotransmitter receptors cause graded potentials when they are activated which have a rapid effect on the potential of the nearby membrane that is brief and local the target cell will usually be excited if the activated ionotropic neurotransmitter receptor allows sodium or calcium ions to pass because they will usually flow into the neuron bringing their positive charges in and causing depolarization or the ionotropic neurotransmitter receptor will usually cause inhibition of the target cell if it allows chloride or potassium ions to pass chloride ions will usually flow into the neuron bringing negative charges in making it more negative inside and potassium ions will usually flow out of the neuron carrying their positive charges outside and also making it more negative inside now the other big class of neurotransmitter receptors are called metabotropic metabotropic and these are not ion channels instead when their neurotransmitter binds to the receptor they activate second messengers inside the neuron and there are a number of different types of second messenger systems that can be activated by metabotropic neurotransmitter receptors and these second messengers can do a lot of different things they can go and affect the behavior of ion channels causing them to be more or less active or they can change the activity of proteins inside the neuron and some can even affect the activity of genes and change the pattern of gene expression inside of neurons when these metabotropic neurotransmitter receptors are activated the response of the target cell occurs more slowly than it does with activation of ionotropic neurotransmitter receptors but the effects may be larger and they may be more widespread because there can be amplification through these second messenger systems the effects of activation of these second messenger systems by metabotropic receptors may involve just brief excitation or inhibition of the target cell or it may cause longer-lasting changes to how the target cell behaves either when it's at rest or when it's responding the input