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Synthesis and κ-opioid receptor activity of furan-substituted salvinorin A analogues

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Abstract

The neoclerodane diterpene salvinorin A, found in the leaves of Salvia divinorum, is a potent κ-opioid receptor agonist, making it an attractive scaffold for development into a treatment for substance abuse. Although several successful semisynthetic studies have been performed to elucidate structure-activity relationships, the lack of analogues with substitutions to the furan ring of salvinorin A has prevented a thorough understanding of its role in binding to the κ-opioid receptor. Herein we report the synthesis of several salvinorin A derivatives with modified furan rings. Evaluation of these compounds in a functional assay indicated that sterically less demanding substitutions are preferred, suggesting the furan ring is bound in a congested portion of the binding pocket. The most potent of the analogues successfully reduced drug-seeking behavior in an animal model of drug-relapse without producing the sedation observed with other κ-opioid agonists.

Riley, A. P., Groer, C. E., Young, D., Ewald, A. W., Kivell, B. M., & Prisinzano, T. E. (2014). Synthesis and Kappa Opioid Receptor Activity of Furan-Substituted Salvinorin A Analogues. Journal of medicinal chemistry. https://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jm501521d
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