Neurotransmitters allow the nerve impulses or signals to travel across the synapse. A synapse is a small gap or junction between two neurons, or a neuron and a muscle cell. The credit for discovering the chemical transmission of nerve impulses goes to Sir Henry Dale (an English pharmacologist and physiologist) and Otto Loewi (a German pharmacologist). Both of them shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1936 for their work on neurotransmitters.
Types of Neurotransmitters
There are several types of neurotransmitters, and each one of them is responsible for some specific functions. Neurotransmitters are usually classified as amino acids, peptides, and monoamines.
The neurotransmitters that fall into the category of amino acids are:
✦ Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)
The most important monoamines or other biogenic amines that are considered as neurotransmitters are:
A large number of neurotransmitters fall into the category of peptides, of which a few important ones are:
✦ Opioid peptides
Apart from these, there are several other important neurotransmitters, such as acetylcholine, dopamine, adenosine, and nitric oxide. So far, about 50 neuroactive peptides have been discovered.
Sometimes, neurotransmitters are also classified as excitatory and inhibitory. This classification is based on their actions on the neurons. Excitatory neurotransmitters are those that excite the neurons and stimulate the brain, while inhibitory neurotransmitters are known for having a calming effect on the brain.
Because of the importance of these neurotransmitter we chart through kinesiology the percentage of each neurotransmitter to determine what is needed to produce more of the missing neurotransmitter or simply restocking the levels of it with particular products