GABA and its receptors in the spinal cord

Trends Pharmacol Sci. 1996 Dec;17(12):457-62. doi: 10.1016/s0165-6147(96)01013-9.


The importance of the inhibitory neurotransmitter, GABA, within higher centres of the mammalian brain is unquestionable. However, its role within the spinal cord is of equal significance. There have been numerous studies over the past two decades that have established GABA as a neurotransmitter at both post- and presynaptic sites in the cord. Here, Marzia Malcangio and Norman Bowery review the current status of GABA in relation to nociception and skeletal muscle tone, and indicate that its contribution to spinal cord function should not be overlooked.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • GABA Antagonists / pharmacology*
  • Humans
  • Pain / drug therapy
  • Receptors, GABA / drug effects*
  • Receptors, GABA / physiology*
  • Spinal Cord / anatomy & histology
  • Spinal Cord / physiology*
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / physiology*


  • GABA Antagonists
  • Receptors, GABA
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid