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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 3728096, 18 pages
Review Article

Acid-Sensing Ion Channels as Potential Therapeutic Targets in Neurodegeneration and Neuroinflammation

Instituto de Fisiología, Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Puebla, 14 sur 6301, CU, San Manuel, 72570 Puebla, PUE, Mexico

Correspondence should be addressed to Enrique Soto

Received 26 March 2017; Revised 29 July 2017; Accepted 13 August 2017; Published 19 September 2017

Academic Editor: Maria Rosaria Catania

Copyright © 2017 Audrey Ortega-Ramírez et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are a family of proton-sensing channels that are voltage insensitive, cation selective (mostly permeable to Na+), and nonspecifically blocked by amiloride. Derived from 5 genes (ACCN1–5), 7 subunits have been identified, 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3, 4, and 5, that are widely expressed in the peripheral and central nervous system as well as other tissues. Over the years, different studies have shown that activation of these channels is linked to various physiological and pathological processes, such as memory, learning, fear, anxiety, ischemia, and multiple sclerosis to name a few, so their potential as therapeutic targets is increasing. This review focuses on recent advances that have helped us to better understand the role played by ASICs in different pathologies related to neurodegenerative diseases, inflammatory processes, and pain.