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Identification of a Potent Tryptophan-Based TRPM8 Antagonist With in Vivo Analgesic Activity

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posted on 2018-06-25, 00:00 authored by Alessia Bertamino, Nunzio Iraci, Carmine Ostacolo, Paolo Ambrosino, Simona Musella, Veronica Di Sarno, Tania Ciaglia, Giacomo Pepe, Marina Sala, Maria Virginia Soldovieri, Ilaria Mosca, Sara Gonzalez-Rodriguez, Asia Fernandez-Carvajal, Antonio Ferrer-Montiel, Ettore Novellino, Maurizio Taglialatela, Pietro Campiglia, Isabel Gomez-Monterrey
TRPM8 has been implicated in nociception and pain and is currently regarded as an attractive target for the pharmacological treatment of neuropathic pain syndromes. A series of analogues of N,N′-dibenzyl tryptamine 1, a potent TRPM8 antagonist, was prepared and screened using a fluorescence-based in vitro assay based on menthol-evoked calcium influx in TRPM8 stably transfected HEK293 cells. The tryptophan derivative 14 was identified as a potent (IC50 0.2 ± 0.2 nM) and selective TRPM8 antagonist. In vivo, 14 showed significant target coverage in both an icilin-induced WDS (at 1–30 mg/kg s.c.) and oxaliplatin-induced cold allodynia (at 0.1–1 μg s.c.) mice models. Molecular modeling studies identified the putative binding mode of these antagonists, suggesting that they could influence an interaction network between the S1–4 transmembrane segments and the TRP domains of the channel subunits. The tryptophan moiety provides a new pharmacophoric scaffold for the design of highly potent modulators of TRPM8-mediated pain.