[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Metabotropic glutamate receptor 7 (mGluR7) remains the most elusive of the eight known mGluRs primarily because of the limited availability of tool compounds to interrogate its potential therapeutic utility. The discovery of N,N'-dibenzhydrylethane-1,2-diamine dihydrochloride (AMN082) as the first orally active, brain-penetrable, mGluR7-selective allosteric agonist by Mitsukawa and colleagues (Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 102:18712-18717, 2005) provides a means to investigate this receptor system directly. AMN082 demonstrates mGluR7 agonist activity in vitro and interestingly has a behavioral profile that supports utility across a broad spectrum of psychiatric disorders including anxiety and depression. The present studies were conducted to extend the in vitro and in vivo characterization of AMN082 by evaluating its pharmacokinetic and metabolite profile. Profiling of AMN082 in rat liver microsomes revealed rapid metabolism (t(1/2) < 1 min) to a major metabolite, N-benzhydrylethane-1,2-diamine (Met-1). In vitro selectivity profiling of Met-1 demonstrated physiologically relevant transporter binding affinity at serotonin transporter (SERT), dopamine transporter (DAT), and norepinephrine transporter (NET) (323, 3020, and 3410 nM, respectively); whereas the parent compound AMN082 had appreciable affinity at NET (1385 nM). AMN082 produced antidepressant-like activity and receptor occupancy at SERT up to 4 h postdose, a time point at which AMN082 is significantly reduced in brain and plasma while the concentration of Met-1 continues to increase in brain. Acute Met-1 administration produced antidepressant-like activity as would be expected from its in vitro profile as a mixed SERT, NET, DAT inhibitor. Taken together, these data suggest that the reported in vivo actions of AMN082 should be interpreted with caution, because they may involve other mechanisms in addition to mGluR7.
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 07/2011; 338(1):345-52. DOI:10.1124/jpet.110.177378 · 3.97 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Substituted pyridazino[4,5-b]indolizines were identified as potent and selective PDE4B inhibitors. We describe the structure-activity relationships generated around an HTS hit that led to a series of compounds with low nanomolar affinity for PDE4B and high selectivity over the PDE4D subtype.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cysteine-dependant aspartyl protease (caspase) activation has been implicated as a part of the signal transduction pathway leading to apoptosis. It has been postulated that caspase-3 inhibition could attenuate cell damage after an ischemic event and thereby providing for a novel neuroprotective treatment for stroke. As part of a program to develop a small molecule inhibitor of caspase-3, a novel series of 3,4-dihydropyrimido(1,2-a)indol-10(2H)-ones (pyrimidoindolones) was identified. The synthesis, biological evaluation and structure-activity relationships of the pyrimidoindolones are described.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We identified small molecule NTS1R agonist compounds through virtual screening of the corporate database using a ROCS approach that searches multi-conformer representations efficiently. As a starting point for the ROCS search, we used the known NTS1R selective antagonist, SR-48527, based on the hypothesis that NT agonists and antagonists might share similar binding regions. Conformations were expanded and selected as database search queries based on a cluster analysis. The search provided us with virtual hits that were tested in intracellular calcium mobilization assays of NTS1R agonist and antagonist activities measured in FLIPR format as well as in [(3)H]NT competition binding studies. The results indicated that two initial hits produced partial agonist activity with potency in the moderate micromolar range.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Activation of the caspase family of cysteine proteases results in the deregulation of cellular homeostasis and apoptosis. This deregulation is a key factor in the development of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and cancer. Thus, the caspases are important drug targets for the therapeutic intervention of a number of pathological states involving inflammation and apoptosis. In this article, we report the results of inhibition kinetics and binding studies utilizing fluorescence spectroscopy and isothermal titration calorimetry to characterize the mechanism of interaction of caspase-3 with three different classes of inhibitors: peptidomimetics, isatins, and pyrimidoindolones. The peptidomimetics and pyrimidoindolones bind to both active sites of the caspase-3 homodimer with equal affinity and favorable enthalpic and entropic binding contributions. Enzyme activity is abolished when both active sites are occupied with the above inhibitors. In contrast, the isatins bind to caspase-3 with significant heat release (-12 kcal/mol) and negative entropy. In addition, enzyme activity is abolished upon isatin binding to one active site of the homodimer resulting in half-site reactivity. Our studies provide important mechanistic insight into inhibitor interactions with caspase-3 and a way to characterize inhibitor interactions that may not be readily apparent from the crystal structure.