[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We document in vitro and in vivo effects of a novel, selective cannabinoid CB(1) receptor inverse agonist, Imidazole 24b (5-(4-chlorophenyl)-N-cyclohexyl-4-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-1-methyl-imidazole-2-carboxamide). The in vitro binding affinity of Imidazole 24b for recombinant human and rat CB(1) receptor is 4 and 10 nM, respectively. Imidazole 24b binds to human cannabinoid CB(2) receptor with an affinity of 297 nM; in vitro, it is a receptor inverse agonist at both cannabinoid CB(1) and CB(2) receptors as it causes a further increase of forskolin-induced cAMP increase. Oral administration of Imidazole 24b blocked CP-55940-induced hypothermia, demonstrating cannabinoid CB(1) receptor antagonist efficacy in vivo. Using ex vivo autoradiography, Imidazole 24b resulted in dose-dependent increases in brain cannabinoid CB(1) receptor occupancy (RO) at 2h post-dosing in rats, indicating that approximately 50% receptor occupancy is sufficient for attenuation of receptor agonist-induced hypothermia. Imidazole 24b administered to C57Bl/6 mice and to dietary-induced obese (DIO) Sprague-Dawley rats attenuated overnight food intake with a minimal effective dose of 10 mg/kg, p.o. Administration had no effect in cannabinoid CB(1) receptor-deficient mice. DIO rats were dosed orally with vehicle, Imidazole 24b (1, 3 or 10 mg/kg), or dexfenfluramine (3 mg/kg) for 2 weeks. At 3 mg/kg, Imidazole 24b reduced cumulative food intake, leading to a non-significant decrease in weight gain. Imidazole 24b at 10 mg/kg and dexfenfluramine treatment inhibited food intake and attenuated weight gain. These findings suggest that selective cannabinoid CB(1) receptor inverse agonists such as Imidazole 24b have potential for the treatment of obesity.
European Journal of Pharmacology 02/2008; 579(1-3):215-24. · 2.59 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Sulfonamide analogues of the potent CB1R inverse agonist taranabant were prepared and optimized for potency and selectivity for CB1R. They were variably more potent than the corresponding amide analogues. The most potent representative 22 had good pharmacokinetic and brain levels, but was modestly active in blocking CB1R agonist-mediated hypothermia.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The discovery of novel acyclic amide cannabinoid-1 receptor inverse agonists is described. They are potent, selective, orally bioavailable, and active in rodent models of food intake and body weight reduction. A major focus of the optimization process was to increase in vivo efficacy and to reduce the potential for formation of reactive metabolites. These efforts led to the identification of compound 48 for development as a clinical candidate for the treatment of obesity.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 01/2007; 49(26):7584-7. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Psychopathological disorders, and depression in particular, are strongly linked to eating attitude in obese patients. The identification of cannabinoid CB1 receptors (CB1Rs) in areas of the central nervous system (CNS) that have been implicated in regulation of mood and food intake suggests that these receptors may mediate such a behavioral link. The goal of this study was to evaluate CB1R modulation of antidepressant-like effects and food intake. For this purpose, 129/SVE and C57BL/6 male mice were acutely dosed intraperitoneally (i.p.) with the CB1R inverse agonist AM251 (3-30 mg/kg) and tested, respectively, in the tail-suspension test (TST) and in the forced-swim test (FST), which have been used widely as tests sensitive to antidepressant compounds. Like the antidepressant desipramine (DMI, 16 mg/kg), AM251 significantly reduced immobility at 10 mg/kg in the TST and at 1 and 10 mg/kg in the FST. Such a decrease of immobility was not accompanied by an increase in motor activity in the open field, suggesting that occupancy of CB1R by AM251 induced antidepressant-like effects. This was supported by two additional experiments. First, the co-administration of the CB1R agonist CP55940, at a dose that did not induce motor impairment or profound hypothermia (0.01 mg/kg), reversed effects of AM251 in the TST. Secondly, effects of AM251 in the FST were absent in CB1R knockout (KO) mice. In addition to an antidepressant-like effect, AM251 reduced fasting-induced hyperphagia over a comparable dose range. Taken together, these data suggest that regulation of mood and food intake might be obtained through inverse agonism of CB1R.