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J Med Chem. 2009 Feb 12;52(3):675-87. doi: 10.1021/jm8009469.

Indene-based scaffolds. 2. An indole-indene switch: discovery of novel indenylsulfonamides as 5-HT6 serotonin receptor agonists.

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Laboratori de Química Orgànica, Departament de Farmacologia i Química Teraputica, Universitat de Barcelona, Avda. Joan XXIII s/n, E-08028 Barcelona, Spain.


Scaffold selection involving an indole-to-indene core change led to the discovery of a series of indenylsulfonamides that act as 5-HT6 serotonin receptor agonists. The variety of the targeted ligands and their synthetic complexity required multistep synthetic approaches. The novel indenylsulfonamides exhibited variable binding affinities for the 5-HT6 receptor, and the in vitro primary binding profiles of the preferred compounds revealed them to be 5-HT6 receptor agonists with Ki values > or =4.5 nM. The structural changes responsible for enhancing the affinities indicated a directing effect modulated by the nature of the indene core, the substitution at the aminoethyl side chain, and especially by the aryl(heteroaryl)sulfonyl group on the indene 5-position. A representative of the family, the N-(inden-5-yl)imidazothiazole-5-sulfonamide (43), exhibited a high affinity and functioned as a potent full agonist for the 5-HT6 receptor (Ki = 4.5 nM, EC50 = 0.9 nM, Emax = 98%).

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