The large family of heterodimeric, transmembrane cell adhesion receptors, integrins mediate numerous functions in the immature and adult CNS. Integrins are described to modulate basic synaptic function and plasticity, and to modulate the activity of the two major excitatory ionotrophic receptor subclass, NMDA and AMPA receptors. We further addressed the role of integrin activation in the normal excitatory synaptic function by utilizing in vivo single-unit recordings combined with microiontophoretic drug application in the CA1 region of the rat. Cells were excited by alternating NMDA and AMPA ejection, while integrin activation was achieved by the ejection of an RGD sequence containing pentapeptide in low and high concentration. Low integrin activation resulted in increased NMDA and decreased AMPA induced firing rate, while high RGD concentration enhanced both types of elicited responses. The control pentapeptide, pentaglycine had no effect on NMDA or AMPA evoked firing rate in either low or high concentration. These results suggest a bidirectional, dose dependent action of integrin activation on basic synaptic transmission, which may underlie the long term synaptic plasticity changes modulated by integrins.