Seven transmembrane receptors: a brief personal retrospective

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2007 Apr;1768(4):748-55. doi: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2006.11.001. Epub 2006 Nov 10.


Receptors have fascinated biologists for more than a century and they have fascinated me for the entirety of my own research career. The seven transmembrane receptors, also known as G protein coupled receptors, represent the largest of the several families of plasma membrane receptors, comprising more than a thousand genes and regulating virtually all known physiological processes in mammals. Moreover, they represent one of the commonest targets of currently used drugs. I have spent the entirety of my research career working on these receptors. Here I set down some personal reflections on the evolution of the field during the past 35 years, hanging the thread of the story on some of the work from my own laboratory.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • History, 20th Century
  • Pharmacology / history*
  • Physiology / history*
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / chemistry
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / genetics
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / history*
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism


  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled