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Neurotransmitter Chart

Neurotransmitter Function Effect of Deficit Effect of Surplus Drugs given

Excitatory: Alzheimer’s Disease Severe Muscle Spasms Alzheimer’s - Aricept
Released by motor neurons. Stimulates
muscle contraction; involved in attention,
memory, learning and general intellectual
Inhibitory: Parkinson’s Disease Schizophrenia Parkinson’s – Sinemet
Dopamine (DA) pleasurable sensations involved in voluntary Drug Addiction
movement, attention, and learning Schizophrenia – Thorazine,

Inhibitory: Depression, Autism Depression – SSRI’s such

moods and emotional states, hunger mood disorders as Prozac, Zoloft
regulation of sleep and wakefulness
(arousal) SNRI’s – Duloxetine

Autism – None
Excitatory: Mental disorders, Anxiety
Used for arousal in the flight/fight response, especially depression
Norepinephrine (NE)
modulation of mood, plays a role in learning
and memory retrieval
GABA Inhibitory: Anxiety, seizures, Sleep and eating Anxiety – Ativan, Xanax,
(gamma-aminobutyric helps to offset excitatory messages and tremors, and insomnia disorders Klonipin
regulate daily sleep-wake cycles
acid) Sleep - Ambien

Inhibitory: Body experiences pain Body may not give Opiate based analgesics
Endorphins involved in pain perception and positive adequate warning about attach to these receptors
emotions. Similar to opiate family of drugs. pain. Artificial highs
Excitatory: Too much glutamate Some mood stabilizers
Used in memory, learning, movement. Helps (and too little GABA) may affect glutamate -
Glutamate messages cross the synapse more efficiently associated with epileptic UNCERTAIN