A rare autoimmune disorder popularized by the autobiography and movie "Brain on Fire" is triggered by an attack on NMDA receptors. The disease occurs when antibodies attack NMDA receptors in the brain, leading to memory loss, intellectual changes, seizures, and death.
A new study clarifies the mechanism behind how ketamine works as an antidepressant. Researchers say there is evidence to suggest ketamine binds to NMDA receptors, instead of opioid receptors. Reducing the belief that ketamine is an opioid may make patients with depression more open to using the treatment.
Bilirubin, a bile pigment most commonly associated with jaundice in newborns, appears to have neuroprotective properties. A new study in mice reveals bilirubin may protect the brain against oxidative stress.
A single shot of ketamine administered to heavy drinkers following reactivation of their drinking memories led to a rapid decrease in the urge to drink. The effect lasted for over nine months.
NMDA receptor hypofunction is involved in the reduction of sleep spindles and delta oscillations, which appear in the brain during deep natural sleep. Findings confirm the role NMDA receptors play in sleep disorders that accompany psychotic states.
Familial hemiplegic migraine type 2 (FHM2) causes a malfunction of astrocytes in the cingulate cortex. Manipulating astrocytes in the cingulate cortex reversed the disfunction, preventing an increase in migraine-like symptoms in mice carrying the FHM2 defect.