[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: [Arg(8)]vasopressin (AVP) produces vasoconstriction via V(1a) receptor (V(1a)R)-mediated vascular smooth muscle cell contraction and is being used to increase blood pressure in septic shock, a form of vasodilatory hypotension. However, AVP also induces V(2) receptor (V(2)R)-mediated antidiuresis, vasodilation, and coagulation factor release, all deleterious in septic shock. The V(1a)R agonist terlipressin (H-Gly(3)[Lys(8)]VP) also lacks selectivity vs the V(2)R and has sizably longer duration of action than AVP, preventing rapid titration of its vasopressor effect in the clinic. We designed and synthesized new short acting V(1a)R selective analogues of general structure [Xaa(2),Ile(3),Yaa(4),Zaa(8)]VP. The most potent and selective compounds in in vitro functional assays (e.g., [Phe(2),Ile(3),Asn(Me(2))(4),Orn(8)]VP (31), [Phe(2),Ile(3),Asn((CH(2))(3)OH)(4),Orn(8)]VP (34), [Phe(2),Ile(3),Hgn(4),Orn(iPr)(8)]VP (45), [Phe(2),Ile(3),Asn(Et)(4),Dab(8)]VP (49), [Thi(2),Ile(3),Orn(iPr)(8)]VP (59), [Cha(2),Ile(3),Asn(4),Orn(iPr)(8)]VP (68)) were tested by intravenous bolus in rats for duration of vasopressive action. Analogues 31, 34, 45, and 49 were as short-acting as AVP. Compound 45, FE 202158, is currently undergoing clinical trials in septic shock.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 06/2011; 54(13):4388-98. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: FE 202158, ([Phe(2),Ile(3),Hgn(4),Orn(iPr)(8)]vasopressin, where Hgn is homoglutamine and iPr is isopropyl), a peptidic analog of the vasoconstrictor hormone [Arg(8)]vasopressin (AVP), was designed to be a potent, selective, and short-acting vasopressin type 1a receptor (V(1a)R) agonist. In functional reporter gene assays, FE 202158 was a potent and selective human V(1a)R agonist [EC(50) = 2.4 nM; selectivity ratio of 1:142:1107:440 versus human vasopressin type 1b receptor, vasopressin type 2 receptor (V(2)R), and oxytocin receptor, respectively] contrasting with AVP's lack of selectivity, especially versus the V(2)R (selectivity ratio of 1:18:0.2:92; human V(1a)R EC(50) = 0.24 nM). This activity and selectivity profile was confirmed in radioligand binding assays. FE 202158 was a potent vasoconstrictor in the isolated rat common iliac artery ex vivo (EC(50) = 3.6 nM versus 0.8 nM for AVP) and reduced rat ear skin blood flow after intravenous infusion in vivo (ED(50) = 4.0 versus 3.4 pmol/kg/min for AVP). The duration of its vasopressor effect by intravenous bolus in rats was as short as AVP at submaximally effective doses. FE 202158 had no V(2)R-mediated antidiuretic activity in rats by intravenous infusion at its ED(50) for reduction of ear skin blood flow, in contrast with the pronounced antidiuretic effect of AVP. Thus, FE 202158 seems suitable for treatment of conditions where V(1a)R activity is desirable but V(2)R activity is potentially deleterious, such as vasodilatory hypotension in septic shock. In addition to the desirable selectivity profile, its short-acting nature should allow dose titration with rapid onset and offset of action to optimize vasoconstriction efficacy and safety.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 03/2011; 337(3):786-96. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Kappa-(kappa) opioid receptors are widely distributed in the periphery and activation results in antinociception; however supraspinal acting kappa-agonists result in unwanted side effects. Two novel, all d-amino acid, tetrapeptide kappa-opioid receptor agonists, FE 200665 and FE 200666, were identified and compared to brain penetrating (enadoline) and peripherally selective (asimadoline) kappa-agonists as potential analgesics lacking unwanted central nervous system (CNS) side effects. In vitro characterization was performed using radioligand binding and GTP gamma S binding. Antinociception was evaluated in both mice and rats. Rotarod tests were performed to determine motor impairment effects of the kappa-agonists. FE 200665 and FE 200666 showed high affinity for human kappa-opioid receptor 1 (Ki of 0.24 nM and 0.08 nM, respectively) and selectivity for human kappa-opioid receptor 1 (human kappa-opioid receptor 1/human mu-opioid receptor/human delta-opioid receptor selectivity ratios of 1/16,900/84,600 and 1/88,600/>1,250,000, respectively). Both compounds demonstrated agonist activity in the human kappa-opioid receptor 1 [35S]GTP gamma S binding assay (EC50 of 0.08 nM and 0.03 nM) and resulted in dose-related antinociception in the mouse writhing test (A50: 0.007 and 0.013 mg/kg, i.v., respectively). Markedly higher doses of FE 200665 and FE 200666 were required to induce centrally-mediated effects in the rotarod assay (548- and 182-fold higher doses, respectively), and antinociception determined in the mouse tail-flick assay (>1429- and 430-fold fold higher doses, respectively) after peripheral administration supporting a peripheral site of action. The potency ratios between central and peripheral activity suggest a therapeutic window significantly higher than previous kappa-agonists. Furthermore, FE 200665 has entered into clinical trials with great promise as a novel analgesic lacking unwanted side effects seen with current therapeutics.
European Journal of Pharmacology 04/2008; 583(1):62-72. · 2.59 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The side effects typically associated with the clinical profiles of opioid mu-receptor agonists have driven continuing efforts to identify novel efficacious analgesics, including agonists acting at opioid kappa receptors. Unfortunately, the therapeutic potential of kappa agonists seems limited by significant central nervous system side effects. Kappa opioid agonists, however, exhibit potent peripherally mediated antihyperalgesic and antinociceptive effects, suggesting that a peripherally acting kappa agonist may be efficacious in pain control with a more desirable safety profile than that associated with currently available opioids. Here, we report an all D-amino acid tetrapeptide characterized as a novel, highly selective kappa opioid receptor agonist. FE200041 (D-Phe-D-Phe-D-Nle-D-Arg-NH2) showed selectivity for the human kappa opioid receptor of greater than 30,000- and 68,000-fold versus human mu opioid receptor and human delta-opioid receptor receptors, respectively, and efficacious agonist activity using in vitro tissue assays. FE200041 produced local, peripheral antinociception in the hindpaw ipsilateral, but not contralateral, to injection. Antinociceptive effects of FE200041 in the mouse acetic acid writhing assay lasted over 60 min and were antagonized by naloxone and by selective kappa, but not mu, opioid receptor antagonists. FE200041 significantly inhibited acetic acid writhing and inhibited formalin-induced flinching in rats. FE200041 did not elicit sedation or motor impairment after systemic administration at a dose 10-fold higher than that needed to achieve antinociception. FE200041 is thus a potent peripherally restricted opioid kappa agonist with no demonstrable side effects typical of kappa agonists with central nervous system activity and with unprecedented selectivity for the opioid kappa receptor. The pharmacology of this compound suggests the possibility of therapeutic application.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 08/2004; 310(1):326-33. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Two dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPPIV, DPP4)-related proteins, DPP8 and DPP9, have been identified recently [Abbott, Yu, Woollatt, Sutherland, McCaughan, and Gorrell (2000) Eur. J. Biochem. 267, 6140-6150; Olsen and Wagtmann (2002) Gene 299, 185-193; Qi, Akinsanya, Riviere, and Junien (2002) Patent application WO0231134]. In the present study, we describe the cloning of DPP10, a novel 796-amino-acid protein, with significant sequence identity to DPP4 (32%) and DPP6 (51%) respectively. We propose that DPP10 is a new member of the S9B serine proteases subfamily. The DPP10 gene is located on the long arm of chromosome 2 (2q12.3-2q14.2), close to the DPP4 (2q24.3) and FAP (2q23) genes. The active-site serine residue is replaced by a glycine residue in DPP10, resulting in the loss of DPP activity. The serine residue is also replaced in DPP6, which lacks peptidase activity. DPP8 and DPP9 share an identical active site with DPP4 (Gly-Trp-Ser-Tyr-Gly). In contrast with the previous results suggesting that DPP9 is inactive, we show that DPP9 is a DPP, hydrolysing Ala-Pro-(7-amino-4-methyl-coumarin) with similar pH-specificity and protease-inhibitor-sensitivity to those of DPP4 and DPP8. Northern-blot analysis shows that whereas DPP8 and DPP9 are widely expressed, DPP10 is expressed mainly in the brain and pancreas. DPP6, which has the highest amino acid identity with DPP10, has been shown previously [Nadal, Ozaita, Amarillo, de Miera, Ma, Mo, Goldberg, Misumi, Ikehara, Neubert et al. (2003) Neuron 37, 449-461] to associate with A-type K(+) channel subunits, modulating their transport and function in somatodendritic compartments of neurons. It is possible that DPP10 is involved in similar functions in the brain. Elucidation of the physiological or pathophysiological role of DPP8, DPP9 and DPP10 and characterization of their structure-function relationships will add impetus to the development of inhibitor molecules for pharmacological or therapeutic use.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We describe the pharmacological profile in rats and monkeys of degarelix (FE200486), a member of a new class of long-acting gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) antagonists. At single subcutaneous injections of 0.3 to 10 microg/kg in rats, degarelix produced a dose-dependent suppression of the pituitary-gonadal axis as revealed by the decrease in plasma luteinizing hormone (LH) and testosterone levels. Duration of LH suppression increased with the dose: in the rat, significant suppression of LH lasted 1, 2, and 7 days after a single subcutaneous injection of degarelix at 12.5, 50, or 200 microg/kg, respectively. Degarelix fully suppressed plasma LH and testosterone levels in the castrated and intact rats as well as in the ovariectomized rhesus monkey for more than 40 days after a single 2-mg/kg subcutaneous injection. In comparative experiments, degarelix showed a longer duration of action than the recently developed GnRH antagonists abarelix, ganirelix, cetrorelix, and azaline B. The in vivo mechanism of action of degarelix was consistent with competitive antagonism, and the prolonged action of degarelix was paralleled by continued presence of radioimmunoassayable degarelix in the general circulation. In contrast to cetrorelix and similarly to ganirelix and abarelix, degarelix had only weak histamine-releasing properties in vitro. These results demonstrate that the unique and favorable pharmacological properties of degarelix make it an ideal candidate for the management of sex steroid-dependent pathologies requiring long-term inhibition of the gonadotropic axis.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 05/2002; 301(1):95-102. · 3.89 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A series of antagonists of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) of the general formula Ac-D2Nal-D4Cpa-D3Pal-Ser-4Aph/4Amf(P)-D4Aph/D4Amf(Q)-Leu-ILys-Pro-DAla-NH2 was synthesized, characterized, and screened for duration of inhibition of luteinizing hormone release in a castrated male rat assay. Selected analogues were tested in a reporter gene assay (IC50 and pA2) and an in vitro histamine release assay. P and Q contain urea/carbamoyl functionalities designed to increase potential intra- and intermolecular hydrogen bonding opportunities for structural stabilization and peptide/receptor interactions, respectively. These substitutions resulted in analogues with increased hydrophilicity and a lesser propensity to form gels in aqueous solution than azaline B [Ac-D2Nal-D4Cpa-D3Pal-Ser-4Aph(Atz)-D4Aph(Atz)-Leu-ILys-Pro-DAla-NH2 with Atz = 3'-amino-1H-1',2',4'-triazol-5'-yl, 5], and in some cases they resulted in a significant increase in duration of action after subcutaneous (s.c.) administration. Ac-D2Nal-D4Cpa-D3Pal-Ser-4Aph(L-hydroorotyl)-D4Aph(carbamoyl)-Leu-ILys-Pro-DAla-NH2 (acetate salt is FE200486) (31) and eight other congeners (20, 35, 37, 39, 41, 45-47) were identified that exhibited significantly longer duration of action than acyline [Ac-D2Nal-D4Cpa-D3Pal-Ser-4Aph(Ac)-D4Aph(Ac)-Leu-ILys-Pro-DAla-NH2] (6) when administered subcutaneously in castrated male rats at a dose of 50 microg in 100 microL of phosphate buffer. No correlation was found between retention times on a C18 reverse phase column using a triethylammonium phosphate buffer at pH 7.0 (a measure of hydrophilicity) or affinity in an in vitro human GnRH report gene assay (pA2) and duration of action. FE200486 was selected for preclinical studies, and some of its properties were compared to those of other clinical candidates. In the intact rat, ganirelix, abarelix, azaline B, and FE200486 inhibited plasma testosterone for 1, 1, 14, and 57 days, respectively, at 2 mg/kg s.c. in 5% mannitol (injection volume = 20 microL). Based on the information that 31, 33, 35 and 37 were significantly shorter acting than acyline or azaline B after intravenous administration (100 microg/rat), we surmised that the very long duration of action of the related FE200486 (for example) was likely due to unique physicochemical properties such as solubility in aqueous milieu, comparatively low propensity to form gels, and ability to diffuse at high concentrations in a manner similar to that described for slow release formulations of peptides. Indeed, in rats injected s.c. with FE200486 (2 mg/kg), plasmatic concentrations of FE200486 remained above 5 ng/mL until day 41, and the time after which they dropped below 3 ng/mL and plasma LH levels started rising until full recovery was reached at day 84 with levels of FE200486 hovering around 1 ng/mL. Additionally, FE200486 was less potent at releasing histamine from isolated rat mast cells than any of the GnRH antagonists presently described in preclinical reports.
Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 03/2001; 44(3):453-67. · 5.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The synthesis of a new class of oxytocin antagonists, with significantly modified C-terminal part, is described. The chemistry of the Mitsunobu reaction was applied to obtain the key derivatives. In spite of the extensive modifications of previously described compound F792, the peptides retain biological activity as oxytocin antagonists.