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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Insecticide action at the GABA-gated chloride channel: recognition, progress, and prospects.

Three billion (3 x 10(9)) pounds of hexachlorocyclohexanes, polychlorobornanes, and chlorinated cyclodienes (such as lindane, toxaphene, and endosulfan, respectively) were used to control pest insects before their mode of action was established as blocking the GABA-gated chloride channel. With the restricted use or demise of these polychlorocycloalkanes (each approximately 50 to approximately 75% by weight of chlorine), the GABAergic system is for now an underutilized target of insecticide action. Newer compounds with outstanding potency at this receptor and as toxicants to houseflies are suitably-substituted 2,6,7-trioxabicyclo[2.2.2]-octanes, particularly the bicycloorthobenzoates, and 1,3-dithianes, including those with no halogenated substituents. Picrotoxinin analogs and alkynylphenyl-silatranes also act at this target but are of lower insecticidal activity. [3H]n-Propyl-ethynylbicycloorthobenzoate ([3H]EBOB) is for now the best radioligand for this insecticidally-relevant binding site in insects. Macrocyclic lactones such as the avermectins and moxidectin act at a different binding site to disrupt chloride flux and they have a different spectrum of insecticidal activity and no cross resistance with cyclodienes in houseflies. The search for new insecticides has provided the incentive and probes for a better understanding of the insect GABAergic system.[1]


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