N-phenylpiperazine analogs can bind selectively to the D3 versus the D2 dopamine receptor subtype despite the fact that these two D2-like dopamine receptor subtypes exhibit substantial amino acid sequence homology. The binding for a number of these receptor subtype selective compounds was found to be consistent with their ability to bind at the D3 dopamine receptor subtype in a bitopic manner. In this study, a series of the 3-thiophenephenyl and 4-thiazolylphenyl fluoride substituted N-phenylpiperazine analogs were evaluated. Compound 6a was found to bind at the human D3 receptor with nanomolar affinity with substantial D3 vs. D2 binding selectivity (approximately 500-fold). Compound 6a was also tested for activity in two in-vivo assays: (1) a hallucinogenic-dependent head twitch response inhibition assay using DBA/2J mice and (2) an L-dopa-dependent abnormal involuntary movement (AIM) inhibition assay using unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine lesioned (hemiparkinsonian) rats. Compound 6a was found to be active in both assays. This compound could lead to a better understanding of how a bitopic D3 dopamine receptor selective ligand might lead to the development of pharmacotherapeutics for the treatment of levodopa-induced dyskinesia (LID) in patients with Parkinson's disease.
Keywords: D2-like dopamine receptors; D3 dopamine receptor subtype; G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR); bitopic ligands; dopamine receptor subtype selective ligands.