[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Ghrelin, through action on its receptor, GH secretagogue receptor type 1a (GHS-R1a), exerts a variety of metabolic functions including stimulation of appetite and weight gain and suppression of insulin secretion. In the present study, we examined the effects of novel small-molecule GHS-R1a antagonists on insulin secretion, glucose tolerance, and weight loss. Ghrelin dose-dependently suppressed insulin secretion from dispersed rat islets. This effect was fully blocked by a GHS-R1a antagonist. Consistent with this observation, a single oral dose of a GHS-R1a antagonist improved glucose homeostasis in an ip glucose tolerance test in rat. Improvement in glucose tolerance was attributed to increased insulin secretion. Daily oral administration of a GHS-R1a antagonist to diet-induced obese mice led to reduced food intake and weight loss (up to 15%) due to selective loss of fat mass. Pair-feeding experiments indicated that weight loss was largely a consequence of reduced food intake. The impact of a GHS-R1a antagonist on gastric emptying was also examined. Although the GHS-R1a antagonist modestly delayed gastric emptying at the highest dose tested (10 mg/kg), delayed gastric emptying does not appear to be a requirement for weight loss because lower doses produced weight loss without an effect on gastric emptying. Consistent with the hypothesis that ghrelin regulates feeding centrally, the anorexigenic effects of potent GHS-R1a antagonists in mice appeared to correspond with their brain exposure. These observations demonstrate that GHS-R1a antagonists have the potential to improve the diabetic condition by promoting glucose-dependent insulin secretion and promoting weight loss.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Selective activation of the neuropeptide Y (NPY)2 receptor to suppress appetite provides a promising approach to obesity management. A selective NPY2 polyethylene glycol-conjugated (PEGylated) peptide agonist is described that consists of a peptide core corresponding to residues 13 to 36 of human peptide YY (PYY) and a nonpeptidic moiety (2-mercaptonicotinic acid) at the peptide N terminus that is derivatized with 20-kDa monomethoxypolyethylene glycol. The PEGylated peptide elicits a dose-dependent reduction in food intake in lean C57BL/6 mice and Wistar rats that persists for 72 and 48 h, respectively. The effect on food intake in lean C57BL/6 mice is blocked by the selective NPY2 antagonist BIIE0246 (N-[(1S)-4-[(aminoiminomethyl)amino]-1-[[[2-(3,5-dioxo-1,2-diphenyl-1,2,4-triazolidin-4-yl)ethyl]amino]carbonyl]butyl]-1-[2-[4-(6,11-dihydro-6-oxo-5H-dibenz[b,e]azepin-11-yl)-1-piperazinyl]-2-oxoethyl]-cyclopentaneacetamide formate). A dose-dependent reduction in body weight in diet-induced obese (DIO) mice is seen following daily dosing for 14 days. The reduction in body weight is sustained following dosing for 40 days, and it is accompanied by an increase in plasma adiponectin. Improvements in glucose disposal and in plasma insulin and glucose levels that are risk factors for type II diabetes are observed following once-daily subcutaneous dosing in DIO mice. The results provide evidence from two animal species that the long-acting selective NPY2 peptide agonist has potential for obesity management.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 12/2007; 323(2):692-700. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The peptide hormone ghrelin is the endogenous ligand for the type 1a growth hormone secretagogue receptor (GHS-R1a) and the only currently known circulating appetite stimulant. GHS-R1a antagonism has therefore been proposed as a potential approach for obesity treatment. More recently, ghrelin has been recognized to also play a role in controlling glucose-induced insulin secretion, which suggests another possible benefit for a GHS-R1a antagonist, namely, the role as an insulin secretagogue with potential value for diabetes treatment. In our laboratories, piperidine-substituted quinazolinone derivatives were identified as a new class of small-molecule GHS-R1a antagonists. Starting from an agonist with poor oral bioavailability, optimization led to potent, selective, and orally bioavailable antagonists. In vivo efficacy evaluation of selected compounds revealed suppression of food intake and body weight reduction as well as glucose-lowering effects mediated by glucose-dependent insulin secretion.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 11/2007; 50(21):5202-16. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A series of indane acetic acid derivatives were prepared which show a spectrum of activity as insulin sensitizers and PPAR-alpha and PPAR-delta ligands. In vivo data are presented for insulin sensitizers with selectivity for PPAR-delta over PPAR-alpha.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Modulation of cAMP levels has been linked to insulin secretion in preclinical animal models and in humans. The high expression of PDE-10A in pancreatic islets suggested that inhibition of this enzyme may provide the necessary modulation to elicit increased insulin secretion. Using an HTS approach, we have identified quinoline-based PDE-10A inhibitors as insulin secretagogues in vitro. Optimized compounds were evaluated in vivo where improvements in glucose tolerance and increases in insulin secretion were measured.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Compounds that simultaneously activate the three peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) subtypes alpha, gamma, and delta hold potential to address the adverse metabolic and cardiovascular conditions associated with diabetes and the metabolic syndrome. We recently identified the indanylacetic acid moiety as a well-tunable PPAR agonist head group. Here we report the synthesis and structure-activity relationship (SAR) studies of novel aryl tail group derivatives that led to a new class of potent PPAR pan agonists. While most of the tail group modifications imparted potent PPAR delta agonist activity, improvement of PPAR alpha and gamma activity required the introduction of new heterocyclic substituents that were not known in the PPAR literature. Systematic optimization led to the discovery of 4-thiazolyl-phenyl derivatives with potent PPAR alpha/gamma/delta pan agonistic activity. The lead candidate from this series was found to exhibit excellent ADME properties and superior therapeutic potential compared to known PPAR gamma activating agents by favorably modulating lipid levels in hApoA1 mice and hyperlipidemic hamsters, while normalizing glucose levels in diabetic rodent models.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 04/2007; 50(5):984-1000. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Type 2 diabetes is characterized by reduced insulin secretion from the pancreas and overproduction of glucose by the liver. Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) promotes glucose-dependent insulin secretion from the pancreas, while glucagon promotes glucose output from the liver. Taking advantage of the homology between GLP-1 and glucagon, a GLP-1/glucagon hybrid peptide, dual-acting peptide for diabetes (DAPD), was identified with combined GLP-1 receptor agonist and glucagon receptor antagonist activity. To overcome its short plasma half-life DAPD was PEGylated, resulting in dramatically prolonged activity in vivo. PEGylated DAPD (PEG-DAPD) increases insulin and decreases glucose in a glucose tolerance test, evidence of GLP-1 receptor agonism. It also reduces blood glucose following a glucagon challenge and elevates fasting glucagon levels in mice, evidence of glucagon receptor antagonism. The PEG-DAPD effects on glucose tolerance are also observed in the presence of the GLP-1 antagonist peptide, exendin(9-39). An antidiabetic effect of PEG-DAPD is observed in db/db mice. Furthermore, PEGylation of DAPD eliminates the inhibition of gastrointestinal motility observed with GLP-1 and its analogues. Thus, PEG-DAPD has the potential to be developed as a novel dual-acting peptide to treat type 2 diabetes, with prolonged in vivo activity, and without the GI side-effects.
Journal of Endocrinology 03/2007; 192(2):371-80. · 4.06 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Modulation of PPAR activities represents an attractive approach for the treatment of diabetes with associated cardiovascular complications. The indanylacetic acid structural motif has proven useful in the generation of potent and tunable PPAR ligands. Modification of the substituents on the linker and the heterocycle tail group allowed for the modulation of the selectivity at the different receptor subtypes. Compound 33 was evaluated in vivo, where it displayed the desired reduction of glucose levels and increase in HDL levels in various animal models.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: VPAC2P-PEG is a VPAC2 receptor agonist peptide that acts as a glucose-dependent insulin secretagogue. Proteolysis by DPPIV may contribute to the in vivo clearance of VPAC2P-PEG. Here, the N-terminus of VPAC2P-PEG is modified by N-terminal acetylation to impart DPPIV resistance. The acetylated peptide, Ac-VPAC2P-PEG, is a selective and potent VPAC2 agonist, resistant to DPPIV proteolysis, and exhibits substantially improved half-life and glucose disposal in rodents. Ac-VPAC2P-PEG has therapeutic potential for diabetes management.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 01/2007; 49(25):7545-8. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The closely related peptides glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) and glucagon have opposing effects on blood glucose. GLP-1 induces glucose-dependent insulin secretion in the pancreas, whereas glucagon stimulates gluconeogenesis and glycogenolysis in the liver. The identification of a hybrid peptide acting as both a GLP-1 agonist and a glucagon antagonist would provide a novel approach for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Toward this end a series of hybrid peptides made up of glucagon and either GLP-1 or exendin-4, a GLP-1 agonist, was engineered. Several peptides that bind to both the GLP-1 and glucagon receptors were identified. The presence of glucagon sequence at the N terminus removed the dipeptidylpeptidase IV cleavage site and increased plasma stability compared with GLP-1. Targeted mutations were incorporated into the optimal dual-receptor binding peptide to identify a peptide with the highly novel property of functioning as both a GLP-1 receptor agonist and a glucagon receptor antagonist. To overcome the short half-life of this mutant peptide in vivo, while retaining dual GLP-1 agonist and glucagon antagonist activities, site-specific attachment of long chained polyethylene glycol (PEGylation) was pursued. PEGylation at the C terminus retained the in vitro activities of the peptide while dramatically prolonging the duration of action in vivo. Thus, we have generated a novel dual-acting peptide with potential for development as a therapeutic for type 2 diabetes.
Journal of Biological Chemistry 06/2006; 281(18):12506-15. · 4.65 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A previously described VPAC2-selective agonist, BAY 55-9837 (peptide HSDAVFTDNYTRLRKQVAAKKYLQSIKNKRY), had several limitations with respect to its potential as an insulin secretagogue for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. These limitations were primarily poor stability in aqueous buffer and short duration of action in vivo. In this report, we describe a series of novel analogs of BAY 55-9837 that were designed around the likely degradation mechanisms and structure-activity relationship of this peptide with a view to overcoming its limitations. These analogs were tested for improved liquid stability and retention of VPAC2-selective binding and activation, as well as prolonged activity in vivo. Although several degradation mechanisms were possible based on the degradation pattern, it was determined that deamidation at the two asparagines (N9 and N28) was the major instability determinant. Changing these two asparagines to glutamines did not negatively affect VPAC2-selective binding and activation. The double glutamine mutein analog, BAY(Q9Q28), retained full VPAC2 activity and selectivity while displaying no significant degradation when stored at 40 degrees C for 4 weeks. This is in contrast to BAY 55-9837, which showed greater than 80% degradation when stored at 40 degrees C for 2 weeks. A cysteine was added to the C terminus of BAY(Q9Q28), followed by site-specific cysteine conjugation with a 22- or 43-kDa polyethylene glycol (PEG) to yield BAY(Q9Q28C32)PEG22 or BAY(Q9Q28C32)PEG43, respectively. These PEGylated peptides retain the ability to selectively bind and activate the VPAC2 receptor and have prolonged glucose-lowering activity in vivo.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 01/2006; 320(2):900-906. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Elevation of plasma free fatty acids has been linked with insulin resistance and diabetes. Inhibition of lipolysis may provide a mechanism to decrease plasma fatty acids, thereby improving insulin sensitivity. Hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL) is a critical enzyme involved in the hormonally regulated release of fatty acids and glycerol from adipocyte lipid stores, and its inhibition may thus improve insulin sensitivity and blood glucose handling in type 2 diabetes. In rat adipocytes, forskolin-activated lipolysis was blocked by in vitro addition of a potent and selective HSL inhibitor or by prior treatment of the animals themselves. Antilipolytic effects also were demonstrated in overnight-fasted mice, rats, and dogs with species-dependent effects on plasma free fatty acid levels but with similar reductions in plasma glycerol being observed in all species. Inhibition of HSL also reduced hyperglycemia in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats. The data support a connection between adipose tissue lipolysis and plasma glucose levels.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 01/2006; 315(3):1396-402. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating peptide (PACAP) and vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) activate two shared receptors, VPAC1 and VPAC2. Activation of VPAC1 has been implicated in elevating glucose output, whereas activation of VPAC2 may be involved in insulin secretion. A hypothesis that a VPAC2-selective agonist would enhance glucose disposal by stimulating insulin secretion without causing increased hepatic glucose production was tested using a novel selective agonist of VPAC2. This agonist, BAY 55-9837, was generated through site-directed mutagenesis based on sequence alignments of PACAP, VIP, and related analogs. The peptide bound to VPAC2 with a dissociation constant (K(d)) of 0.65 nmol/l and displayed >100-fold selectivity over VPAC1. BAY 55-9837 stimulated glucose-dependent insulin secretion in isolated rat and human pancreatic islets, increased insulin synthesis in purified rat islets, and caused a dose-dependent increase in plasma insulin levels in fasted rats, with a half-maximal stimulatory concentration of 3 pmol/kg. Continuous intravenous or subcutaneous infusion of the peptide reduced the glucose area under the curve following an intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test. The peptide had effects on intestinal water retention and mean arterial blood pressure in rats, but only at much higher doses. BAY 55-9837 may be a useful therapy for the treatment of type 2 diabetes.