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Eur J Pharmacol. 2001 Mar 2;414(2-3):135-43.

Inhibitory effects of SR141716A on G-protein activation in rat brain.

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Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and Institute for Drug and Alcohol Studies, Virginia Commonwealth University Medical College of Virginia, 1112 East Clay St., Box 980524, 23298, Richmond, VA, USA.


N-(piperidin-1-yl)-5-(4-chlorophenyl)-1-(2,4-dichlorophenyl)-4-methyl-1H-pyrazole-3-carboxamide hydrochloride (SR141716A), a cannabinoid CB(1) receptor antagonist, has inverse agonist effects in cannabinoid CB(1) receptor-expressing cell lines, brain and peripheral organs. These studies characterized SR141716A-inhibited G-protein activity by measuring [35S]GTPgammaS binding. Maximal inhibition of basal [35S]GTPgammaS binding in cerebellar membranes was 50%. The EC(50) value for inhibition of [35S]GTPgammaS binding was 4.4 microM, whereas the K(e) for inhibition of R(+)-[2,3-dihydro-5-methyl-3-[(morpholinyl)methyl]pyrrolo[1,2,3-de]-1,4-benzoxazinyl]-(1-naphthalenyl)methanone mesylate (WIN 55,212-2)-stimulated [35S]GTPgammaS binding was 0.6 nM. [35S]GTPgammaS autoradiography was used to examine the regional specificity of SR141716A inhibition. SR141716A inhibited basal [35S]GTPgammaS binding in all regions examined, with inhibition ranging from approximately 20% in caudate-putamen to 40% in hippocampus. These studies demonstrate that SR141716A is a competitive antagonist at nanomolar concentrations, whereas it inhibits basal receptor-mediated G-protein activity at micromolar concentrations. These data suggest that the apparent inverse agonist effect is either not cannabinoid CB(1) receptor-specific or that SR141716A is binding to different sites on the cannabinoid CB(1) receptor to produce inverse agonist versus competitive antagonist effects.

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