Chemistry and physics of lipids

Effect of local anesthetics on serotonin1A receptor function.

PMID 27825964


The fundamental mechanism behind the action of local anesthetics is still not clearly understood. Phenylethanol (PEtOH) is a constituent of essential oils with a pleasant odor and can act as a local anesthetic. In this work, we have explored the effect of PEtOH on the function of the hippocampal serotonin1A receptor, a representative neurotransmitter receptor belonging to the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) family. Our results show that PEtOH induces reduction in ligand binding to the serotonin1A receptor due to lowering of binding affinity, along with a concomitant decrease in the degree of G-protein coupling. Analysis of membrane order using the environment-sensitive fluorescent probe DPH revealed decrease in membrane order with increasing PEtOH concentration, as evident from reduction in rotational correlation time of the probe. Analysis of results obtained shows that the action of local anesthetics could be attributed to the combined effects of specific interaction of the receptor with anesthetics and alteration of membrane properties (such as membrane order). These results assume relevance in the perspective of anesthetic action and could be helpful to achieve a better understanding of the possible role of anesthetics in the function of membrane receptors.

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DPH, ≥98% (HPLC)