Catecholaminergic Receptor Sites

Catecholamine receptors are proteins embedded in the plasma membrane of a neuron. Activation of these receptors by catecholamines can produce excitatory and/or inhibitory responses. In many cases, receptor number is increased or decreased as an adaptive response. For example, blockage of dopamine receptors by antipsychotic drugs, which are dopamine receptor antagonists, often results in a compensatory increase in the number of receptors. Many types of catecholamine receptors respond to one of the three catecholamines.

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