Developmentally regulated serotonin 5-HT2B receptors

Int J Dev Neurosci. 2001 Jul;19(4):365-72. doi: 10.1016/s0736-5748(01)00022-3.


Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) binds to numerous cognate receptors to initiate its biological effects. In this review, we have focused on the 5-HT2B receptor to address how signaling and expression of this receptor is specifically implicated in embryonic development and adult health and disease. Transduction of the 5-HT2B signaling is complex, including phospholipase C and A2 stimulation, cGMP production and a mitogenic signal that integrates the tyrosine kinase-signaling pathway. Furthermore, 5-HT, through the 5-HT2B receptors, has the ability to control serotonergic differentiation of committed neuron-like cells. In addition, 5-HT2B receptors are actively involved in the transient action of 5-HT during embryonic morphogenesis. Our recent data presented the first genetic evidence that 5-HT via 5-HT2B receptors regulates cardiac embryonic development and adult functions and suggested that this receptor subtype may be involved in other physiopathological situations. In particular, 5-HT-dependent molecular mechanisms may be involved in embryonic development and postnatal maturation of the enteric nervous system. Also, the involvement of the 5-HT2B receptor in the vascular growth often observed in hypertension is likely. These probably result from reactivation of developmentally regulated receptors in pathological situations. Finally, embryonic functions of 5-HT2 receptors observed in Drosophila gastrulation suggest evolutionary conserved mechanisms.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium / physiology
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Drosophila melanogaster / embryology
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics
  • Embryonic and Fetal Development
  • Enteric Nervous System / embryology
  • Enteric Nervous System / growth & development
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Fetal Heart / growth & development
  • Fetal Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Fetal Proteins / genetics
  • Fetal Proteins / physiology
  • Gastrula
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental*
  • Guanosine Triphosphate / physiology
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / genetics
  • Hypertension / metabolism
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System / physiology
  • Mammals / physiology
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Morphogenesis
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / physiology
  • Protein Kinase C / physiology
  • Receptor, Serotonin, 5-HT2B
  • Receptors, Serotonin / biosynthesis
  • Receptors, Serotonin / genetics
  • Receptors, Serotonin / physiology*
  • Serotonin / physiology
  • Signal Transduction
  • Species Specificity
  • Type C Phospholipases / physiology


  • Fetal Proteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Receptor, Serotonin, 5-HT2B
  • Receptors, Serotonin
  • Serotonin
  • Guanosine Triphosphate
  • Protein Kinase C
  • Type C Phospholipases
  • Calcium