Master Alpha 2 Receptor with Picmonic for Medicine

With Picmonic, facts become pictures. We've taken what the science shows - image mnemonics work - but we've boosted the effectiveness by building and associating memorable characters, interesting audio stories, and built-in quizzing.

Alpha 2 Receptor

Afro (2) Tutu Receptor
Picmonic
The alpha-2 adrenergic receptor is a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) associated with the Gi subunit. This subunit functions to inhibit the production of cAMP from ATP. Catecholamines like norepinephrine and epinephrine signal through this receptor which is classically located on vascular prejunctional terminals where it inhibits the release of norepinephrine in a form of negative feedback. Common effects of this receptor include suppression of sympathetic outflow, inhibition of insulin release from the pancreas, inhibition of lipolysis in adipose tissue, inhibition of aqueous humor production in the eye, as well an increase in platelet aggregation.
6 KEY FACTS
CHARACTERISTICS
Gi subunit
Gi-Joe-guy

The alpha-2 adrenergic receptor is a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) associated with the Gi subunit. This subunit functions to inhibit the production of cAMP from ATP.

Decrease Sympathetic Outflow
Down-arrow Simba-lion

This receptor is classically located on vascular prejunctional terminals, where it inhibits the release of norepinephrine in a form of negative feedback. Therefore, activation of this receptor leads to a decrease in sympathetic outflow.

Decrease Insulin Release
Down-arrow Insect-syringe

Release of insulin is strongly inhibited by norepinephrine, which leads to increased blood glucose levels during stress. Although norepinephrine weakly activates beta-2 adrenergic receptors which stimulate insulin release, there is a dominance of the role of the alpha-2 receptor, which decreases insulin release. This leads to an overall decrease of insulin release from the pancreas.

Decrease Lipolysis
Down-arrow Lip-lights

Lipolysis occurs when certain hormones that induce lipolysis trigger receptors that activate adenylate cyclase to increase production of cAMP, which activates lipases found in adipose tissue. Because activation of alpha-2 receptors inhibits the production of cAMP, activation of these receptors plays a role in decreasing lipolysis from adipose tissue as a part of negative feedback of the sympathetic pathway.

Increase Platelet Aggregation
Up-arrow Plates

Platelets, also called thrombocytes, are involved in hemostasis, leading to the formation of blood clots. Platelets aggregate using fibrinogen and von Willebrand factor, and are stimulated by ADP, thromboxane and alpha-2 receptor activation.

Decrease Aqueous Humor Production
Down-arrow Water from Eye-fountain

Stimulation of the alpha-2 adrenergic receptor inhibits the production of aqueous humor by the ciliary body in the eye. This is the reason that alpha-2 agonists such as brimonidine are used in the treatment of glaucoma where intraocular pressure is high due to excess aqueous humor production or reduced aqueous humor drainage.

Unlock all 6 facts & definitions with Picmonic Free!

JOIN FREE

Take the Alpha 2 Receptor Quiz

Picmonic's rapid review multiple-choice quiz allows you to assess your knowledge.

START QUIZ NOW

It's worth every penny

Our Story Mnemonics Increase Mastery and Retention

Memorize facts with phonetic mnemonics

Unforgettable characters with concise but impactful videos (2-4 min each)

Ace Your Medical (MD/DO) Classes & Exams with Picmonic:

Over 860,000 students use Picmonic’s picture mnemonics to improve knowledge, retention, and exam performance.

Choose the #1 Medical (MD/DO) student study app.

Picmonic for Medicine (MD/DO) covers information that is relevant to your entire Medical (MD/DO) education. Whether you’re studying for your classes or getting ready to conquer the USMLE Step 1, USMLE Step 2 CK, COMLEX Level 1, or COMLEX Level 2, we’re here to help.

Works better than traditional Medical (MD/DO) flashcards.

Research shows that students who use Picmonic see a 331% improvement in memory retention and a 50% improvement in test scores.