Dysregulation of the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), a potent vasodilator, is directly implicated in the pathogenesis of migraine. CGRP binds to and signals through the CGRP receptor (CGRP-R), a heterodimer containing the calcitonin receptor-like receptor (CLR), a class B GPCR, and RAMP1, a receptor activity-modifying protein. We have solved the crystal structure of the CLR/RAMP1 N-terminal ectodomain heterodimer, revealing how RAMPs bind to and potentially modulate the activities of the CLR GPCR subfamily. We also report the structures of CLR/RAMP1 in complex with the clinical receptor antagonists olcegepant (BIBN4096BS) and telcagepant (MK0974). Both drugs act by blocking access to the peptide-binding cleft at the interface of CLR and RAMP1. These structures illustrate, for the first time, how small molecules bind to and modulate the activity of a class B GPCR, and highlight the challenges of designing potent receptor antagonists for the treatment of migraine and other class B GPCR-related diseases.
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