An oral, peripherally restricted CB1/CB2 agonist could provide an interesting approach to treat chronic pain by harnessing the analgesic properties of cannabinoids but without the well-known central side effects. γ-Carbolines are a novel class of potent mixed CB1/CB2 agonists characterized by attractive physicochemical properties including high aqueous solubility. Optimization of the series has led to the discovery of 29, which has oral activity in a rat inflammatory pain model and limited brain exposure at analgesic doses, consistent with a lower risk of CNS-mediated tolerability issues.
Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd.