Author(s): Harris RA
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Abstract Similarities and differences in the actions of alcohols, barbiturates and benzodiazepines on GABA-activated chloride channels are reviewed. This question has been approached using behavioral measures, the uptake of 36Cl- by isolated brain membranes and the function of GABA-activated chloride channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes using brain mRNA. Although drugs from all three classes augment GABA-dependent chloride conductances, there are a number of differences between these drugs. Studies of genetic differences in sensitivity to sedative drugs and development of tolerance and cross-tolerance between these drugs indicate that actions of ethanol are similar (but not identical) to those of benzodiazepines but are quite different from those of pentobarbital.
This article was published in Alcohol
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy