Synaptic mechanism of pentylenetetrazole: selectivity for chloride conductance

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Science  26 Aug 1977:
Vol. 197, Issue 4306, pp. 912-914
DOI: 10.1126/science.887932


In the neurons of Aplysia californica pentylenetetrazole (2 millimolar) greatly reduced chloride-dependent responses to the iontophoresis of putative transmitters. At the same concentration, pentylenetetrazole caused less attenuation of the other iontophoretic responses and had minimal membrane effects. Several convulsants have been observed to have a similar selectivity for the chloride conductance. A common mechanism of convulsant action--reduction of transmitter-induced chloride conductances--is hypothesized.