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J Med Chem. 2002 Jan 31;45(3):654-62.

Expansion of structure-activity studies of piperidine analogues of 1-[2-(diphenylmethoxy)ethyl]-4-(3-phenylpropyl)piperazine (GBR 12935) compounds by altering substitutions in the N-benzyl moiety and behavioral pharmacology of selected molecules.

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  • 1Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan 48202, USA.


A series of substituted N-benzyl analogues of the dopamine transporter (DAT) specific compound, 4-[2-(diphenylmethoxy)ethyl]-1-benzylpiperidine were synthesized and biologically characterized. Different 4'-alkyl, 4'-alkenyl, and 4'-alkynyl substituents were introduced in the phenyl ring of the benzyl moiety along with the replacement of the same phenyl ring by the isomeric alpha- and beta-naphthyl groups. Different polar substitutions at the 3'- and 4'-position were also introduced. Novel compounds were tested for their binding affinity at the dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine transporter systems in the brain by competing for [(3)H]WIN 35 428, [(3)H]citalopram, and [(3)H]nisoxetine, respectively. Selected compounds were also evaluated for their activity in inhibiting the uptake of [(3)H]dopamine. Binding results demonstrated that alkenyl and alkynyl substitutions at the 4'-position produced potent compounds in which compound 6 with a vinyl substitution was the most potent. In vivo evaluation of three selected compounds indicated that despite their high potency at the DAT, these compounds stimulated locomotor activity (LMA) less than cocaine when tested across similar dose ranges. In a drug discrimination study procedure, none of these three compounds generalized from cocaine in mice trained to discriminate 10 mg/kg cocaine from vehicle. In a 4 h time course LMA experiment, one of our previous lead piperidine derivatives (1a) showed considerable prolonged action. Thus, in this report, we describe a structure-activity relationship study of novel piperidine analogues assessed by both in vitro transporter assays and in vivo behavioral activity measurements.

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