Massachusetts General Hospital Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine - Pain and Neurosciences Research
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Research Overview

Critical Care Research

Pain and Neurosciences Research

Biomedical Innovation

Ethics and Health Policy

Clinical Research

Grant Funding


Henry K. Beecher Pharmacology Laboratory

Summary Science Features

GABAA Receptors and Etomidate (supported by NIH grant P01GM58448):  Etomidate is a general anesthetic drug that has attractive characteristics for exploring its mechanism in detail.  In the context of a Program Project Grant with collaborators Keith Miller (director) and Doug Raines at Mass General, Jon Cohen at Harvard Medical School, and Richard Olsen at UCLA, we are investigating both how and where etomidate affects its most important molecular targets GABAA receptors.  In this project, we are also investigating other potent general anesthetics such as long-chain alcohols and propofol.

The GABAA Receptor Gamma Subunit and Volatile Anesthetics  (supported by NIH grant R01GM866724):  Volatile anesthetics, like etomidate, positively modulate GABAA receptors as well as glycine receptors.  This research project emerged from a study we published in the past, and focuses on the role of the gamma subunit of GABAA receptors in volatile anesthesia. 

Serotonin Type 3 Receptors and Anesthetics  (supported by NIH grant P01GM58448):  A major hurdle in studies of anesthetic interactions with ligand-gated ion channels is the lack of purified homogeneous membrane protein for photolabeling, binding, and biochemical studies.  5HT3A receptors represent a model where we have succeeded in producing large amounts of expressed receptor protein in cultured cells.

Office Information

Department of Anesthesia,
Critical Care and Pain Medicine
Gray-Bigelow 444
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114

Public Transportation Access: Yes
Disabled Access: Yes