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J Med Chem. 2012 Jul 26;55(14):6352-62. doi: 10.1021/jm300305c. Epub 2012 Jul 16.

Synthesis and evaluation of aryl-naloxamide opiate analgesics targeting truncated exon 11-associated μ opioid receptor (MOR-1) splice variants.

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  • 1Molecular Pharmacology and Chemistry Program, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10065, USA.


3-Iodobenzoylnaltrexamide 1 (IBNtxA) is a potent analgesic acting through a novel receptor target that lack many side-effects of traditional opiates composed, in part, of exon 11-associated truncated six transmembrane domain MOR-1 (6TM/E11) splice variants. To better understand the SAR of this drug target, a number of 4,5-epoxymorphinan analogues were synthesized. Results show the importance of a free 3-phenolic group, a phenyl ring at the 6 position, an iodine at the 3'or 4' position of the phenyl ring, and an N-allyl or c-propylmethyl group to maintain high 6TM/E11 affinity and activity. 3-Iodobenzoylnaloxamide 15 (IBNalA) with a N-allyl group displayed lower δ opioid receptor affinity than its naltrexamine analogue, was 10-fold more potent an analgesic than morphine, elicited no respiratory depression or physical dependence, and only limited inhibition of gastrointestinal transit. Thus, the aryl-naloxamide scaffold can generate a potent analgesic acting through the 6TM/E11 sites with advantageous side-effect profile and greater selectivity.

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