Synonyms: A4 nicotinic receptor,Acetylcholine receptor alpha 4 neural,Acetylcholine receptor neuronal nicotinic alpha 4 subunit,ACH 4,ACH4,ACHA4,AChR,Acra 4,Acra4,Alpha4 nAChR,BFNC,Cholinergic receptor nicotinic alpha 4,Cholinergic receptor nicotinic alpha polypeptide 4,CHRNA 4,CHRNA4,EBN 1,EBN,EBN1,NACHR,NACRA 4,NACRA4,Neuronal acetylcholine receptor subunit alpha-4,Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor alpha 4 subunit
Background: This gene encodes a nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, which belongs to a superfamily of ligand-gated ion channels that play a role in fast signal transmission at synapses. These pentameric receptors can bind acetylcholine, which causes an extensive change in conformation that leads to the opening of an ion-conducting channel across the plasma membrane. This protein is an integral membrane receptor subunit that can interact with either nAChR beta-2 or nAChR beta-4 to form a functional receptor. Mutations in this gene cause nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy type 1. Polymorphisms in this gene that provide protection against nicotine addiction have been described. Alternative splicing results in multiple transcript variants.