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The sudden interruption of the increase of the concentration of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), determines an increase in neuronal activity. GABA withdrawal (GW) is a heuristic analogy, with withdrawal symptoms developed by other GABA receptor-agonists such as alcohol, benzodiazepines, and neurosteroids. GW comprises a model of neuronal excitability validated by electroencephalogram (EEG) in which high-frequency and high-amplitude spike-wave complexes appear. In brain slices, GW was identified by increased firing synchronization of pyramidal neurons and by changes in the active properties of the neuronal membrane. GW induces pre- and postsynaptic changes: a decrease in GABA synthesis/release, and the decrease in the expression and composition of GABAA receptors associated with increased calcium entry into the cell. GW is an excellent bioassay for studying partial epilepsy, epilepsy refractory to drug treatment, and a model to reverse or prevent the generation of abstinences from different drugs. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


E Calixto. GABA withdrawal syndrome: GABAA receptor, synapse, neurobiological implications and analogies with other abstinences. Neuroscience. 2016 Jan 28;313:57-72

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PMID: 26592722

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