Research Topic

Pharmacological Aspects of Ligand-gated Ion Channels as Targets of Natural and Synthetic Agents

About this Research Topic

In the central and peripheral nervous system, as well as in their effectors (heart, muscles, vessels), neurotransmitters target postsynaptic receptors with high affinity and specificity, resulting in the transmission of excitatory or inhibitory information.

When these receptors are coupled to an ion channel, they are called ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs). These receptors have been studied for decades because their functions are crucial in cellular communication and they are involved in many significant neuropathologies, including genetic channelopathies that affect the nervous system.

In addition, these receptors are the target of chemicals synthesized for therapeutic and phytosanitary purposes, but also of natural molecules derived from animal or plant toxins. All of them modulate the receptors’ activity and restore - or disrupt - their physiological functions.

Moreover, increasingly important works show that these LGICs are also the target of synthetic pesticide agents, which are originally supposed to specifically act on invertebrate targets but, however, have shown to have the capacity to disrupt non-target system receptors.

This Research Topic is open to authors working on the pharmacology of ionotropic receptors (namely GABA, acetylcholine, glutamate, ATP, glycine, serotonin) and the modulation of their activity by insecticide molecules, natural toxins, anxiolytics, and others, acting as agonists, antagonists or allosteric modulators.

The purpose of this Research Topic is to gather recent advances on LGICs at multiple scales (in silico to in vivo) using different approaches (electrophysiology, cell biology, biochemistry, molecular modeling, genetic animal models etc.) to highlight their function and dysfunction in the context of physiological processes, as well as associated pathologies or acute and chronic intoxications. Original Research articles, Review articles and as short communications are welcome.


Keywords: LGICs, Toxins, Insecticides, Anxiolytics, Allosteric modulation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

In the central and peripheral nervous system, as well as in their effectors (heart, muscles, vessels), neurotransmitters target postsynaptic receptors with high affinity and specificity, resulting in the transmission of excitatory or inhibitory information.

When these receptors are coupled to an ion channel, they are called ligand-gated ion channels (LGICs). These receptors have been studied for decades because their functions are crucial in cellular communication and they are involved in many significant neuropathologies, including genetic channelopathies that affect the nervous system.

In addition, these receptors are the target of chemicals synthesized for therapeutic and phytosanitary purposes, but also of natural molecules derived from animal or plant toxins. All of them modulate the receptors’ activity and restore - or disrupt - their physiological functions.

Moreover, increasingly important works show that these LGICs are also the target of synthetic pesticide agents, which are originally supposed to specifically act on invertebrate targets but, however, have shown to have the capacity to disrupt non-target system receptors.

This Research Topic is open to authors working on the pharmacology of ionotropic receptors (namely GABA, acetylcholine, glutamate, ATP, glycine, serotonin) and the modulation of their activity by insecticide molecules, natural toxins, anxiolytics, and others, acting as agonists, antagonists or allosteric modulators.

The purpose of this Research Topic is to gather recent advances on LGICs at multiple scales (in silico to in vivo) using different approaches (electrophysiology, cell biology, biochemistry, molecular modeling, genetic animal models etc.) to highlight their function and dysfunction in the context of physiological processes, as well as associated pathologies or acute and chronic intoxications. Original Research articles, Review articles and as short communications are welcome.


Keywords: LGICs, Toxins, Insecticides, Anxiolytics, Allosteric modulation


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

30 August 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

30 August 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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