Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
[Online ahead of print]

Preclinical Pharmacological Evaluation of the Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase Inhibitor BIA 10-2474


Preclinical Pharmacological Evaluation of the Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase Inhibitor BIA 10-2474

Maria-João Bonifácio et al. Br J Pharmacol.


Background and purpose: In 2016, one person died and four others had mild-to-severe neurological symptoms during a phase I trial of the fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH) inhibitor BIA 10-2474.

Experimental approach: Pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic studies were performed with BIA 10-2474, PF-04457845 and JNJ-42165279 using mice, rats and human FAAH expressed in COS cells. Selectivity was evaluated by activity-based protein profiling (APBB) in rats. BIA 10-2474 effect in stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRSP) was investigated.

Key results: BIA 10-2474 was 10-fold less potent than PF-04457845 in inhibiting human FAAH in situ but inhibited mouse brain and liver FAAH with ED50 values of 13.5 and 6.2 μg·kg-1 , respectively. Plasma and brain BIA 10-2474 levels were consistent with in situ potency and neither BIA 10-2474 nor its metabolites accumulated following repeat administration. FAAH and α/β-hydrolase domain containing 6 were the primary targets of BIA 10-2474 and, at higher exposure levels, ABHD11, PNPLA6, PLA2G15, PLA2G6 and androgen-induced protein 1. At 100 mg·kg-1 for 28 days, the level of several lipid species containing arachidonic acid increased. Daily treatment of SHRSP with BIA 10-2474 did not affect mortality rate or increased the incidence of haemorrhage or oedema in surviving animals.

Conclusions and implications: BIA 10-2474 potently inhibits FAAH in vivo, similarly to PF-04457845 and interacts with a number of lipid processing enzymes, some previously identified in human cells as off-targets particularly at high levels of exposure. These interactions occurred at doses used in toxicology studies, but the implication of these off-targets in the clinical trial accident remains unclear.

Similar articles

See all similar articles



    1. Alexander, S. P. H., Keely, E., Mathie, A., Peter, J. A., Veale, E. L., Armstrong, J. H., … GTP collaborators (2019). The Concise Guide to pharmacology 2019/2020: Introduction and other protein target. British Journal of Pharmacology, 176, S1-S20.
    1. Arber, C. E., Li, A., Houlden, H., & Wray, S. (2016). Review: Insights into molecular mechanisms of disease in neurodegeneration with brain iron accumulation: Unifying theories. Neuropathology and Applied Neurobiology, 42, 220-241.
    1. Bachovchin, D. A., & Cravatt, B. F. (2012). The pharmacological landscape and therapeutic potential of serine hydrolases. Nature Reviews. Drug Discovery, 11, 52-68.
    1. Beliaev, A., Ferreira Humberto, S., Learmonth David, A., Bonifácio Maria, J., Torrão, L., Pires Nuno, M., … Kiss, L. E. (2016). Synthesis and structure-activity relationships of ionizable 1,3,4-oxadiazol-2(3H)-ones as peripherally selective FAAH inhibitors with improved aqueous solubility. Pure and Applied Chemistry, 88, 341-347.
    1. Benjamini, Y., & Hochberg, Y. (1995). Controlling the false discovery rate: A practical and powerful approach to multiple testing. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series B (Methodological), 57, 289-300.

LinkOut - more resources