Markus Rey

Actelion Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Allschwil, Basel-Landschaft, Switzerland

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Publications (12)40.48 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Aims The endothelin (ET) system is a tissular system, as the production of ET isoforms is mostly autocrine or paracrine. Macitentan is a novel dual ETA/ETB receptor antagonist with enhanced tissue distribution and sustained receptor binding properties designed to achieve a more efficacious ET receptor blockade. To determine if these features translate into improved efficacy in vivo, a study was designed in which rats with either systemic or pulmonary hypertension and equipped with telemetry were given macitentan on top of maximally effective doses of another dual ETA/ETB receptor antagonist, bosentan, which does not display sustained receptor occupancy and shows less tissue distribution. Methods After establishing dose–response curves of both compounds in conscious, hypertensive Dahl salt-sensitive and pulmonary hypertensive bleomycin-treated rats, macitentan was administered on top of the maximal effective dose of bosentan. Key Findings In hypertensive rats, macitentan 30 mg/kg further decreased mean arterial blood pressure (MAP) by 19 mmHg when given on top of bosentan 100 mg/kg (n = 9, p < 0.01 vs. vehicle). Conversely, bosentan given on top of macitentan failed to induce an additional MAP decrease. In pulmonary hypertensive rats, macitentan 30 mg/kg further decreased mean pulmonary artery pressure (MPAP) by 4 mmHg on top of bosentan (n = 8, p < 0.01 vs. vehicle), whereas a maximal effective dose of bosentan given on top of macitentan did not cause any additional MPAP decrease. Significance The add-on effect of macitentan on top of bosentan in two pathological models confirms that this novel compound can achieve a superior blockade of ET receptors and provides evidence for greater maximal efficacy.
    Life sciences 01/2014; · 2.56 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In preceding communications we summarized our medicinal chemistry efforts leading to the identification of potent, selective, and orally active S1P1 agonists such as the thiophene derivative 1. As a continuation of these efforts, we replaced the thiophene in 1 by a 2-, 3-, or 4-pyridine and obtained less lipophilic, potent, and selective S1P1 agonists (e.g., 2) efficiently reducing blood lymphocyte count in the rat. Structural features influencing the compounds' receptor affinity profile and pharmacokinetics are discussed. In addition, the ability to penetrate brain tissue has been studied for several compounds. As a typical example for these pyridine based S1P1 agonists, compound 53 showed EC50 values of 0.6 and 352 nM for the S1P1 and S1P3 receptor, respectively, displayed favorable PK properties, and penetrated well into brain tissue. In the rat, compound 53 maximally reduced the blood lymphocyte count for at least 24 h after oral dosing of 3 mg/kg.
    Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 12/2013; · 5.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Previously, we reported on the discovery of a novel series of bicyclo[3.1.0]hexane fused thiophene derivatives that serve as potent and selective S1P1 receptor agonists. Here, we discuss our efforts to simplify the bicyclohexane fused thiophene head. In a first step the bicyclohexane moiety could be replaced by a simpler, less rigid cyclohexane ring without compromising the S1P receptor affinity profile of these novel compounds. In a second step, the thiophene head was simplified even further by replacing the cyclohexane ring with an isobutyl group attached either to position 4 or position 5 of the thiophene. These structurally much simpler headgroups again furnished potent and selective S1P1 agonists (e.g., 87), which efficiently and dose dependently reduced the number of circulating lymphocytes upon oral administration to male Wistar rats. For several compounds discussed in this report lymphatic transport is an important route of absorption that may offer opportunities for a tissue targeted approach with minimal plasma exposure.
    Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 12/2013; · 5.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: From a high-throughput screening campaign aiming at the identification of novel S1P1 receptor agonists, the pyrazole derivative 2 emerged as a hit structure. Medicinal chemistry efforts focused not only on improving the potency of the compound but in particular also on resolving its inherent instability issue. This led to the discovery of novel bicyclo[3.1.0]hexane fused thiophene derivatives. Compounds with high affinity and selectivity for S1P1 efficiently reducing the blood lymphocyte count in the rat were identified. For instance, compound 85 showed EC50 values of 7 and 2880 nM on S1P1 and S1P3, respectively, had favorable pharmacokinetic properties in rat and dog, distributed well into brain tissue, and efficiently and dose dependently reduced the blood lymphocyte count in the rat. After oral administration to spontaneously hypertensive rats, the S1P1 selective compound 85 showed no effect on mean arterial blood pressure and affected the heart rate during the wake phase of the animals only.
    Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 11/2013; · 5.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ponesimod, a selective S1P1 receptor modulator, reduces the blood lymphocyte count in all tested species by preventing egress of T and B cells from thymus and peripheral lymphoid organs. In addition, ponesimod transiently affects heart rate and atrioventricular (AV) conduction in humans, effects not observed in mice, rats, and dogs with selective S1P1 receptor modulators, suggesting that the regulation of heart rate and rhythm is species dependent. In the present study, we used conscious guinea pigs implanted with a telemetry device to investigate the effects of single and multiple oral doses of ponesimod on ECG variables, heart rate, and blood pressure. Oral administration of ponesimod did not affect the sinus rate (P rate) but dose-dependently induced AV block type I to III. A single oral dose of 0.1 mg/kg had no effect on ECG variables, while a dose of 3 mg/kg induced AV block type III in all treated guinea pigs. Repeated oral dosing of 1 or 3 mg/kg ponesimod resulted in rapid desensitization, so that the second dose had no or a clearly reduced effect on ECG variables as compared with the first dose. Resensitization of the S1P1 receptor in the heart was concentration dependent. After desensitization had been induced by the first dose of ponesimod, the cardiac system remained desensitized as long as the plasma concentration was ≥75 ng/ml. By using a progressive up-titration regimen, the first-dose effect of ponesimod on heart rate and AV conduction was significantly reduced due to desensitization of the S1P1 receptor. In summary, conscious guinea pigs implanted with a telemetry device represent a useful model to study first-dose effects of S1P1 receptor modulators on heart rate and rhythm. This knowledge was translated to a dosing regimen of ponesimod to be tested in humans to avoid or significantly reduce the first-dose effects.
    PLoS ONE 01/2013; 8(9):e74285. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Starting from the structure of bosentan (1), we embarked on a medicinal chemistry program aiming at the identification of novel potent dual endothelin receptor antagonists with high oral efficacy. This led to the discovery of a novel series of alkyl sulfamide substituted pyrimidines. Among these, compound 17 (macitentan, ACT-064992) emerged as particularly interesting as it is a potent inhibitor of ET(A) with significant affinity for the ET(B) receptor and shows excellent pharmacokinetic properties and high in vivo efficacy in hypertensive Dahl salt-sensitive rats. Compound 17 successfully completed a long-term phase III clinical trial for pulmonary arterial hypertension.
    Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 08/2012; 55(17):7849-61. · 5.61 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Here we evaluated the ability of a new, dual blood-pressure telemetry transmitter to simultaneously measure pulmonary and systemic blood pressure and the electrocardiogram in rats. The transmitter was implanted in normotensive and monocrotaline-induced pulmonary hypertensive Wistar rats, with sensing catheters placed in the pulmonary artery (channel 1) and descending aorta (channel 2). Biopotential electrodes were positioned to record an apex-based lead II electrocardiogram. Pulmonary and systemic arterial blood pressure and electrocardiographic waveforms were recorded between 2 and 12 wk after implantation of the transmitter. During this period, pulmonary arterial pressure progressively increased in monocrotaline-treated compared with saline-treated rats. The pharmacologic response of rats to reference compounds was measured by using the transmitter to validate the technique and to evaluate the ability of the device to transmit changes in blood pressure and the electrocardiogram. Validation against 2 Millar high-fidelity blood-pressure catheters confirmed the accuracy of the blood pressure data recorded with the transmitter. In addition, local tolerance of the associated catheters was confirmed by histologic examination.
    Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science: JAALAS 01/2012; 51(2):231-8. · 1.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is a debilitating and often fatal disease characterized by a progressive increase in pulmonary vascular resistance that leads to right ventricular failure. Described in this unit is an in vivo model of monocrotaline-induced pulmonary hypertension in rats that can be used to assess the effects of antihypertensive agents on pulmonary artery pressure and right ventricular hypertrophy.
    Current protocols in pharmacology 09/2009; Chapter 5:Unit 5.56.
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    ABSTRACT: The dual endothelin receptor antagonist, bosentan, and the phosphodiesterase inhibitor, sildenafil, are efficacious in experimental and clinical pulmonary hypertension (PHT). The effects of bosentan, sildenafil, and their combination were evaluated in rats with monocrotaline (MCT)-induced PHT. A first group consisted of control rats with no MCT injection. Four other groups of rats received MCT subcutaneously and were assigned to receive no treatment, 300 mg/kg/day bosentan as food admix, 100 mg/kg/day sildenafil in drinking water, or their combination for 4 weeks. The doses of bosentan and sildenafil were the maximally effective doses based on a dose-range-finding study. Mortality was 0%, 53%, 11%, 11%, and 0%, respectively, in the five different groups. Bosentan and sildenafil significantly attenuated the increase in mean pulmonary arterial pressure, and the combination had an additional effect. Similarly, bosentan, sildenafil, and, to a greater extent, their combination significantly reduced right ventricular (RV) hypertrophy. Bosentan, but not sildenafil, decreased norepinephrine and BNP plasma concentrations, reduced kidney weight, and normalized systemic hemodynamics. In conclusion, bosentan and sildenafil are efficacious in rats with chronic PHT, and their combination shows an additional effect for decreasing pulmonary arterial pressure, reducing plasma catecholamines, maintaining body weight, and reducing mortality.
    Experimental Biology and Medicine 07/2006; 231(6):967-73. · 2.80 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Urotensin-II (U-II) is a cyclic peptide that acts through a specific G-protein-coupled receptor, UT receptor. Urotensin-II and UT receptors have been described in pancreas and kidney, but their function is not well understood. We studied the effects of chronic treatment of diabetic rats with the orally active selective U-II receptor antagonist palosuran. Streptozotocin treatment causes pancreatic beta-cell destruction and leads to the development of hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia, and renal dysfunction. Long-term treatment of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats with palosuran improved survival, increased insulin, and slowed the increase in glycemia, glycosylated hemoglobin, and serum lipids. Furthermore, palosuran increased renal blood flow and delayed the development of proteinuria and renal damage. The U-II system is unique in that it plays a role both in insulin secretion and in the renal complications of diabetes. Urotensin receptor antagonism might be a new therapeutic approach for the treatment of diabetes.
    Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 04/2006; 316(3):1115-21. · 3.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Urotensin-II (U-II) is a cyclic peptide now described as the most potent vasoconstrictor known. U-II binds to a specific G protein-coupled receptor, formerly the orphan receptor GPR14, now renamed urotensin receptor (UT receptor), and present in mammalian species. Palosuran (ACT-058362; 1-[2-(4-benzyl-4-hydroxy-piperidin-1-yl)-ethyl]-3-(2-methyl-quinolin-4-yl)-urea sulfate salt) is a new potent and specific antagonist of the human UT receptor. ACT-058362 antagonizes the specific binding of (125)I-labeled U-II on natural and recombinant cells carrying the human UT receptor with a high affinity in the low nanomolar range and a competitive mode of antagonism, revealed only with prolonged incubation times. ACT-058362 also inhibits U-II-induced calcium mobilization and mitogen-activated protein kinase phosphorylation. The binding inhibitory potency of ACT-058362 is more than 100-fold less on the rat than on the human UT receptor, which is reflected in a pD'(2) value of 5.2 for inhibiting contraction of isolated rat aortic rings induced by U-II. In functional assays of short incubation times, ACT-058362 behaves as an apparent noncompetitive inhibitor. In vivo, intravenous ACT-058362 prevents the no-reflow phenomenon, which follows renal artery clamping in rats, without decreasing blood pressure and prevents the subsequent development of acute renal failure and the histological consequences of ischemia. In conclusion, the in vivo efficacy of the specific UT receptor antagonist ACT-058362 reveals a role of endogenous U-II in renal ischemia. As a selective renal vasodilator, ACT-058362 may be effective in other renal diseases.
    Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 11/2004; 311(1):204-12. · 3.89 Impact Factor
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    JPET Fast Forward. Published on May. 01/2004; 14.