I am a
Home I AM A Search Login

Papers of the Week

Papers: 3 Jul 2021 - 9 Jul 2021

Animal Studies, Pharmacology/Drug Development

2021 Jul 02

ACS Chem Neurosci

Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Partial Antagonist Polyamides from Tunicates and Their Predatory Sea Slugs.


Paguigan ND, Tun JO, Leavitt LS, Lin Z, Chase K, Dowell C, Deering-Rice CE, Lim AL, Karthikeyan M, Hughen RW, Zhang J, Peterson RT, Reilly CA, Light AR, Raghuraman S, McIntosh MJ, Olivera BM, Schmidt EW
ACS Chem Neurosci. 2021 Jul 02.
PMID: 34213884.


In our efforts to discover new drugs to treat pain, we identified molleamines A-E (-) as major neuroactive components of the sea slug, , and their prey, , tunicates. The chemical structures of molleamines were elucidated by spectroscopy and confirmed by the total synthesis of molleamines A () and C (). Synthetic completely blocked acetylcholine-induced calcium flux in peptidergic nociceptors (PNs) in the somatosensory nervous system. Compound affected neither the α7 nAChR nor the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors in calcium flux assays. In addition to nociceptors, partially blocked the acetylcholine-induced calcium flux in the sympathetic nervous system, including neurons from the superior cervical ganglion. Electrophysiology revealed a block of α3β4 (mouse) and α6/α3β4 (rat) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), with IC values of 1.4 and 3.1 μM, respectively. Molleamine C () is a partial antagonist, reaching a maximum block of 76-82% of the acetylcholine signal and showing no partial agonist response. Molleamine C () may thus provide a lead compound for the development of neuroactive compounds with unique biological properties.