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Papers of the Week

Papers: 15 May 2021 - 21 May 2021

Animal Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2021 May 19

J Med Chem

Identification of an N-acylated- D Arg-Leu-NH 2 Dipeptide as a Highly Selective Neuropeptide FF1 Receptor Antagonist That Potently Prevents Opioid-Induced Hyperalgesia.


Quillet R, Schneider S, Utard V, Drieu la Rochelle A, Elhabazi K, Henningsen J B, Gizzi P, Schmitt M, Kugler V, Simonneaux V, Ilien B, Simonin F, Bihel F
J Med Chem. 2021 May 19.
PMID: 34008968.


RFamide-related peptide-3 (RFRP-3) and neuropeptide FF (NPFF) target two different receptor subtypes called neuropeptide FF1 (NPFF1R) and neuropeptide FF2 (NPFF2R) that modulate several functions. However, the study of their respective role is severely limited by the absence of selective blockers. We describe here the design of a highly selective NPFF1R antagonist called RF3286, which potently blocks RFRP-3-induced hyperalgesia in mice and luteinizing hormone release in hamsters. We then showed that the pharmacological blockade of NPFF1R in mice prevents the development of fentanyl-induced hyperalgesia while preserving its analgesic effect. Altogether, our data indicate that RF3286 represents a useful pharmacological tool to study the involvement of the NPFF1R/RFRP-3 system in different functions and different species. Thanks to this compound, we showed that this system is critically involved in the development of opioid-induced hyperalgesia, suggesting that NPFF1R antagonists might represent promising therapeutic tools to improve the use of opioids in the treatment of chronic pain.