Northwestern University

Mon 4:00 PM

"Inside-out Pharmacology: Nicotine and, Perhaps, Psychiatric Drugs"

When: Monday, April 24, 2017
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM  

Where: Robert H Lurie Medical Research Center, Baldwin Auditorium, 303 E. Superior, Chicago, IL 60611 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Alexa Nash   312.503.4893

Group: Department of Pharmacology Seminars

Category: Lectures & Meetings


The Department of Pharmacology is pleased to welcome Dr. Henry Lester, Ph.D., Bren Professor, Division of Biology and Biological Engineering at the California Institute of Technology.

The following, is an overview of this seminar, as described by Dr. Lester:

Why should neuroscience extend pharmacokinetics to the subcellular level? Over the past decade, studies on nicotine addiction indicate that some of nicotine’s actions—especially the chronic effects—actually begin in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). There, nicotine becomes a pharmacological chaperone for its classical targets, nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. How much nicotine enters the ER? How fast? New subcellular biosensor tools provide movies of the process, showing that nicotine enters the ER within a few seconds after it appears near cells, then leaves just as quickly. We’ll explain how other nicotinic drugs act similarly—but how acetylcholine itself does not. We’ll survey the “downstream” cellular and circuit biology. We’ll ask you to critique the suggestion that such “inside-out” concepts of neural drug action also apply to the presently unexplained aspects of psychiatric and opioid drugs.

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