In the search for more selective A2-receptor agonists and on the basis that appropriate substitution at C2 is known to impart selectivity for A2 receptors, 2-alkynyladenosines 2a-d were resynthesized and evaluated in radioligand binding, adenylate cyclase, and platelet aggregation studies. Binding of [3H]NECA to A2 receptors of rat striatal membranes was inhibited by compounds 2a-d with Ki values ranging from 2.8 to 16.4 nM. 2-Alkynyladenosines also exhibited high-affinity binding at solubilized A2 receptors from human platelet membranes. Competition of 2-alkynyladenosines 2a-d for the antagonist radioligand [3H]DPCPX and for the agonist [3H]CCPA gave Ki values in the nanomolar range, and the compounds showed moderate A2 selectivity. In order to improve this selectivity, the corresponding 2-alkynyl derivatives of adenosine-5'-N-ethyluronamide 8a-d were synthesized and tested. As expected, the 5'-N-ethyluronamide derivatives retained the A2 affinity whereas the A1 affinity was attenuated, resulting in an up to 10-fold increase in A2 selectivity. A similar pattern was observed in adenylate cyclase assays and in platelet aggregation studies. A 30- to 45-fold selectivity for platelet A2 receptors compared to A1 receptors was found for compounds 8a-c in adenylate cyclase studies.