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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2015, Article ID 716514, 19 pages
Review Article

Development of PET and SPECT Probes for Glutamate Receptors

Department of Hygienic Chemistry, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Nagasaki University, 1-14 Bunkyo-machi, Nagasaki 852-8521, Japan

Received 28 June 2014; Accepted 29 August 2014

Academic Editor: Masahiro Ono

Copyright © 2015 Takeshi Fuchigami 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.


L-Glutamate and its receptors (GluRs) play a key role in excitatory neurotransmission within the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). Impaired regulation of GluRs has also been implicated in various neurological disorders. GluRs are classified into two major groups: ionotropic GluRs (iGluRs), which are ligand-gated ion channels, and metabotropic GluRs (mGluRs), which are coupled to heterotrimeric guanosine nucleotide binding proteins (G-proteins). Positron emission tomography (PET) and single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging of GluRs could provide a novel view of CNS function and of a range of brain disorders, potentially leading to the development of new drug therapies. Although no satisfactory imaging agents have yet been developed for iGluRs, several PET ligands for mGluRs have been successfully employed in clinical studies. This paper reviews current progress towards the development of PET and SPECT probes for GluRs.