Excitatory-inhibitory (E/I) balance is essential for normal neural development, behavior and cognition. E/I imbalance leads to a variety of neurological disorders, such as autism and schizophrenia. NMDA receptors (NMDARs) regulate AMPAR-mediated excitatory and GABAAR-mediated inhibitory synaptic transmission, suggesting that NMDARs play an important role in the establishment and maintenance of the E/I balance. In this review, we briefly introduced NMDARs, AMPARs and GABAARs, summarized the current studies on E/I balance mediated by NMDARs, and discussed the current advances in NMDAR-mediated AMPAR and GABAAR development. Specifically, we analyzed the role of NMDAR subunits in the establishment and maintenance of E/I balance, which may provide new therapeutic strategies for the recovery of E/I imbalance in neurological disorders.
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Life Sciences and Medicine