Stereocontrolled synthesis and pharmacological evaluation of azetidine-2,3-dicarboxylic acids at NMDA receptors

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The four stereoisomers of azetidine-2,3-dicaroxylic acid (L-trans-ADC, L-cis-ADC, D-trans-ADC, and D-cis-ADC) were synthesized in a stereocontrolled fashion following two distinct strategies: one providing the two cis-ADC enantiomers and one giving access to the two trans-ADC enantiomers. The four azetidinic amino acids were characterized in a radioligand binding assay ([(3)H]CGP39653) at native NMDA receptors: L-trans-ADC showed the highest affinity (K(i)=10 microM) followed by the D-cis-ADC stereoisomer (21 microM). In contrast, the two analogues L-cis-ADC and D-trans-ADC were low-affinity ligands (>100 and 90 microM, respectively). Electrophysiological characterization of the ADC compounds at the four NMDA receptor subtypes NR1/NR2A, NR1/NR2B, NR1/NR2C, and NR1/NR2D expressed in Xenopus oocytes showed that L-trans-ADC displayed the highest agonist potency at NR1/NR2D (EC(50)=50 microM), which was 9.4-, 3.4-, and 1.9-fold higher than the respective potencies at NR1/NR2A-C. D-cis-ADC was shown to be a partial agonist at NR1/NR2C and NR1/NR2D with medium-range micromolar potencies (EC(50)=720 and 230 microM, respectively). A subsequent in silico ligand-protein docking study suggested an unusual binding mode for these amino acids in the agonist binding site.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)110-117
Publication statusPublished - 2009

ID: 10243665