LY404187: a novel positive allosteric modulator of AMPA receptors

CNS Drug Rev. Fall 2002;8(3):255-82. doi: 10.1111/j.1527-3458.2002.tb00228.x.


LY404187 is a selective, potent and centrally active positive allosteric modulator of AMPA receptors. LY404187 preferentially acts at recombinant human homomeric GluR2 and GluR4 versus GluR1 and GluR3 AMPA receptors. In addition, LY404187 potentiates the flip splice variant of these AMPA receptors to a greater degree than the flop splice variant. In both recombinant and native AMPA receptors, potentiation by LY404187 displays a unique time-dependent growth that appears to involve a suppression of the desensitization process of these ion channels. LY404187 has been shown to enhance glutamatergic synaptic transmission both in vitro and in vivo. This augmentation of synaptic activity is due to the direct potentiation of AMPA receptor function, as well as an indirect recruitment of voltage-dependent NMDA receptor activity. Enhanced calcium influx through NMDA receptors is known to be a critical step in initiating long-term modifications in synaptic function (e.g., long-term potentiation, LTP). These modifications in synaptic function may be substrates for certain forms of memory encoding. Consistent with a recruitment of NMDA receptor activity, LY404187 has been shown to enhance performance in animal models of cognitive function requiring different mnemonic processes. These data suggest that AMPA receptor potentiators may be therapeutically beneficial for treating cognitive deficits in a variety of disorders, particularly those that are associated with reduced glutamatergic signaling such as schizophrenia. In addition, LY404187 has been demonstrated to be efficacious in animal models of behavioral despair that possess considerable predictive validity for antidepressant activity. Although the therapeutic efficacy of AMPA receptor potentiators in these and other diseases will ultimately be determined in the clinic, evidence suggests that the benefit of these compounds will be mediated by multiple mechanisms of action. These mechanisms include direct enhancement of AMPA receptor function, secondary mobilization of intracellular signaling cascades, and prolonged modulation of gene expression.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Action Potentials / drug effects
  • Allosteric Regulation
  • Animals
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / drug therapy
  • Depression / drug therapy
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists / chemistry
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists / pharmacology*
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists / therapeutic use
  • Hippocampus / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Maze Learning / drug effects
  • Memory Disorders / drug therapy
  • Mice
  • Prefrontal Cortex / drug effects
  • Rats
  • Receptors, AMPA / agonists*
  • Schizophrenia / drug therapy
  • Sulfonamides / chemistry
  • Sulfonamides / pharmacology*
  • Sulfonamides / therapeutic use
  • Synaptic Transmission / drug effects


  • Excitatory Amino Acid Agonists
  • LY 404187
  • Receptors, AMPA
  • Sulfonamides