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J Med Chem. 2002 Oct 10;45(21):4589-93.

Design and pharmacology of N-[(3R)-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinolinium- 3-ylcarbonyl]-(1R)-1-(4-chlorobenzyl)- 2-[4-cyclohexyl-4-(1H-1,2,4-triazol- 1-ylmethyl)piperidin-1-yl]-2-oxoethylamine (1), a potent, selective, melanocortin subtype-4 receptor agonist.

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Department of Chemistry, Merck & Co., Inc., P.O. Box 2000, Rahway, New Jersey 07065-0900, USA.


Synthetic and natural peptides that act as nonselective melanocortin receptor agonists have been found to be anorexigenic and to stimulate erectile activity. We report the design and development of 1, a potent, selective (1184-fold vs MC3R, 350-fold vs MC5R), small-molecule agonist of the MC4 receptor. Pharmacological testing confirms the food intake lowering effects of MC4R agonism and suggests another role for the receptor in the stimulation of erectile activity.

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