Steroid-Induced Ocular Hypertension in Mice Is Differentially Reduced by Selective EP2, EP3, EP4, and IP Prostanoid Receptor Agonists

Int J Mol Sci. 2024 Mar 15;25(6):3328. doi: 10.3390/ijms25063328.


We tested five chemically and metabolically stable prostaglandin (PG) receptor agonists in a mouse model of dexamethasone-induced ocular hypertension (OHT). Whilst all compounds significantly (p < 0.05, ANOVA) lowered intraocular pressure (IOP) after twice-daily bilateral topical ocular dosing (5 µg/dose) over three weeks, the time course and magnitude of the responses varied. The onset of action of NS-304 (IP-PG receptor agonist) and rivenprost (EP4-PG receptor agonist) was slower than that of misoprostol (mixed EP2/EP3/EP4-PG receptor agonist), PF-04217329 (EP2-PG receptor agonist), and butaprost (EP2-PG receptor agonist). The rank order of IOP-lowering efficacies aligned with the onset of actions of these compounds. Peak IOP reductions relative to vehicle controls were as follows: misoprostol (74.52%) = PF-04217329 (74.32%) > butaprost (65.2%) > rivenprost (58.4%) > NS-304 (55.3%). A literature survey indicated that few previously evaluated compounds (e.g., latanoprost, timolol, pilocarpine, brimonidine, dorzolamide, cromakalim analog (CKLP1), losartan, tissue plasminogen activator, trans-resveratrol, sodium 4-phenyl acetic acid, etc.) in various animal models of steroid-induced OHT were able to match the effectiveness of misoprostol, PF-04217329 or butaprost. Since a common feature of the latter compounds is their relatively high affinity and potency at the EP2-PG receptor sub-type, which activates the production of intracellular cAMP in target cells, our studies suggest that drugs selective for the EP2-PG receptor may be suited to treat corticosteroid-induced OHT.

Keywords: Butaprost; EP2 receptor agonist; IOP; PF-04217329; ocular hypertension; steroid.

MeSH terms

  • Acetamides*
  • Acetates*
  • Animals
  • Mice
  • Misoprostol* / pharmacology
  • Misoprostol* / therapeutic use
  • Ocular Hypertension* / chemically induced
  • Ocular Hypertension* / drug therapy
  • Pyrazines*
  • Receptors, Prostaglandin
  • Receptors, Prostaglandin E, EP4 Subtype
  • Steroids
  • Sulfonamides*
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator


  • PF 04217329
  • selexipag
  • Misoprostol
  • Tissue Plasminogen Activator
  • Receptors, Prostaglandin
  • Receptors, Prostaglandin E, EP4 Subtype
  • Steroids
  • Acetamides
  • Acetates
  • Pyrazines
  • Sulfonamides