How receptor mosaics decode transmitter signals. Possible relevance of cooperativity

Trends Biochem Sci. 2005 Apr;30(4):188-93. doi: 10.1016/j.tibs.2005.02.010.


It has been demonstrated that receptor-receptor interactions between G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) occur at the plasma-membrane level. It has also been shown that clustering of GPCRs in aggregates or receptor mosaics (RMs) results in the reciprocal modulation of their binding and decoding characteristics. It is hypothesized that cooperativity plays an important part in the decoding of signals processed by RMs of GPCRs. Thus, the binding of the ligand at one receptor alters the likelihood of the same ligand binding at the next site, in the case of RMs, formed by identical receptors and/or by iso-receptors (receptors that bind the same ligand).

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Allosteric Regulation
  • Animals
  • Binding Sites
  • Dopamine / metabolism
  • Glutamic Acid / metabolism
  • Ligands
  • Neurons / metabolism
  • Protein Binding
  • Receptor Aggregation*
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Synapses / metabolism
  • Synaptic Transmission / physiology


  • Ligands
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
  • Glutamic Acid
  • Dopamine