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Br J Pharmacol. 2013 Jan;168(1):151-62. doi: 10.1111/j.1476-5381.2012.02115.x.

[Dmt1]N/OFQ(1-13)-NH2: a potent nociceptin/orphanin FQ and opioid receptor universal agonist.

Author information

1
Department of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, Section of Pharmacology, University of Ferrara, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE:

Intrathecally (i.t.) administered nociceptin/orphanin FQ (N/OFQ) evokes antinociceptive effects in rodents. Recent studies in monkeys demonstrated that i.t. co-application of N/OFQ and morphine elicits synergistic antinociceptive actions suggesting mixed N/OFQ peptide (NOP) and μ opioid receptor agonists as innovative spinal analgesics. Thus, novel N/OFQ related peptides were synthesized in order to identify and pharmacologically characterize a mixed NOP/ μ opioid receptor agonist.

EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH:

The following in vitro assays were used: calcium mobilization in cells expressing the human NOP or classical opioid receptors and chimeric G proteins, receptor and [(35)S]-GTPγS binding, [(35)S]-GTPγS binding in rat spinal cord membranes, guinea pig ileum bioassay. In vivo experiments were performed in monkeys using the tail withdrawal assay.

KEY RESULTS:

From calcium mobilization studies [Dmt(1)]N/OFQ(1-13)-NH(2) was selected as the most potent and least selective compound. The mixed NOP/opioid full agonist activity and high affinity of [Dmt(1)]N/OFQ(1-13)-NH(2) was confirmed at human recombinant receptors in receptor binding, calcium mobilization and/or [(35)S]-GTPγS binding studies, at rat spinal cord receptors in [(35)S]-GTPγS binding experiments, and at guinea pig receptors inhibiting neurogenic contractions in the ileum. In vivo in the tail withdrawal assay in monkeys i.t. [Dmt(1) ]N/OFQ(1-13)-NH(2) was able to elicit robust and long-lasting antinociceptive effects.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS:

Collectively, these results demonstrate that [Dmt(1)]N/OFQ(1-13)-NH(2) behaves as NOP/opioid receptor universal agonist and substantiate the suggestion that such mixed ligands are worthy of development as innovative spinal analgesics.

PMID:
22827708
PMCID:
PMC3570011
DOI:
10.1111/j.1476-5381.2012.02115.x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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