Neurochemistry is the study of neurochemicals, including neurotransmitters and other molecules such as psychopharmaceuticals and neuropeptides, that influence the function of neurons. This field within neuroscience examines how neurochemicals influence the operation of neurons, synapses, and neural networks. Neurochemists analyze the biochemistry and molecular biology of organic compounds in the nervous system, and their roles in such neural processes as cortical plasticity, neurogenesis, and neural differentiation.
In the 1950s, neurochemistry became a recognized scientific research discipline. The founding of neurochemistry as a discipline traces it origins to a series of "International Neurochemical Symposia", of which the first symposium volume published in 1954 was titled Biochemistry of the Developing Nervous System. These meetings led to the formation of the International Society for Neurochemistry and the American Society for Neurochemistry. These early gatherings discussed the tentative nature of possible neurotransmitter substances such as acetylcholine, histamine, substance P, and serotonin. By 1972, ideas were more concrete. Neurochemicals such as norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin were classified as "putative neurotransmitters in certain neuronal tracts in the brain."
- List of neurochemists
- Molecular neuroscience
- Neuroplasticity or Synaptic plasticity
- Signal transduction
- Agranoff, Bernard W. (22 July 2003). "History of Neurochemistry". Encyclopedia of Life Sciences. doi:10.1038/npg.els.0003465. Retrieved 13 November 2014.
- Siegel, George J.; Albers, R.W.; Brady, S.T.; Price, D.L. (2006). Basic Neurochemistry, 7th Ed. Academic Press. ISBN 0-12-088397-X.