NMDA: A Key Brain Cell Receptor (image) Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Share Print E-Mail Caption This overall view of the NMDA receptor shows its hot air balloon-like shape. Much of the "balloon" portion protrudes from the surface of glutamate neurons. It engages with signals coming from outside the cell. The "basket" portion the at the bottom lies well below the cell membrane, in the cytoplasm. It forms the terminal end of the receptor's ion channel. NMDA dysfunction is implicated in depression, schizophrenia and Alzheimer's disease, among others. Credit Furukawa Lab, CSHL Usage Restrictions please give credit Share Print E-Mail Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.