Synthesis and biological activities of dynorphin A analogues with opioid antagonist properties

J Med Chem. 1986 Oct;29(10):1913-7. doi: 10.1021/jm00160a019.


Dynorphin A, which displays a wide variety of physiological effects, binds to opioid receptors preferentially at the kappa receptor type. kappa-selective antagonists would be very useful as pharmacological and biochemical probes to study and better understand the action of dynorphin A at its preferred receptor. However, the development of such molecules has been elusive, and very few are known at this time. Taking these features into account, we have synthesized by the solid-phase procedure several analogues of dynorphin A containing various D-amino acid substitutions. The binding properties of the peptides have been examined at three main opioid binding sites (mu, delta, and kappa) and their kappa selectivity determined. Their biological activities have been tested in three specific pharmacological assays for agonist and/or antagonist properties. Introduction of D-Trp substitution leads to analogues, in particular [D- Trp2,8,D-Pro10]-, [D-Trp5,8,D-Pro10]-, and [D-Trp2,4,8,D-Pro10]dynorphin(1-11), showing antagonist properties in the isolated rabbit vas deferens preparation, a kappa specific bioassay. The antagonism against dynorphin A is weak, as indicated by the observed Ke values (433, 199, and 293 nM, respectively), and not very selective (kappa vs. mu). Such peptide analogues derived from the endogenous ligand and endowed with antagonist properties are the first ones reported to date and could open a promising way in designing more potent and selective kappa opioid antagonists.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dynorphins / chemical synthesis*
  • Dynorphins / metabolism
  • Dynorphins / pharmacology
  • Guinea Pigs
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Narcotic Antagonists / chemical synthesis*
  • Narcotic Antagonists / metabolism
  • Narcotic Antagonists / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Receptors, Opioid / drug effects*
  • Receptors, Opioid, kappa
  • Receptors, Opioid, mu
  • Structure-Activity Relationship


  • Narcotic Antagonists
  • Receptors, Opioid
  • Receptors, Opioid, kappa
  • Receptors, Opioid, mu
  • Dynorphins