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A group of spirocyclic tropanyl-Δ(2)-isoxazolines was synthesized exploiting the 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition of nitrile oxides to olefins. Their interaction with the dopamine and serotonin transporters (DAT and SERT, respectively) was evaluated through binding experiments. The majority of the compounds had no inhibitory effects (IC(50) >> 10 μM), while some had an IC(50) value in the range 5-10 μM (8a-c, 10b and 11c on DAT, 12b on SERT). Unexpectedly, one of the tertiary amines under investigation, that is 3'-methoxy-8-methyl-spiro{8-azabicyclo[3.2.1]octane-3,5'(4'H)-isoxazole 7a, was able to enhance at a concentration of 10 μM both [(3)H]citalopram and [(3)H]paroxetine binding to SERT in rat brain homogenate (up to 25%, due to an increase of B(max)) and [(3)H]serotonin uptake (up to 30%) in cortical synaptosomes. This peculiar pharmacological profile of 7a suggests it binds to an allosteric site on SERT, and positions derivative 7a as a very useful tool to investigate SERT machinery. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Clelia Dallanoce, Mara Canovi, Carlo Matera, Tiziana Mennini, Marco De Amici, Marco Gobbi, Carlo De Micheli. A novel spirocyclic tropanyl-Δ²-isoxazoline derivative enhances citalopram and paroxetine binding to serotonin transporters as well as serotonin uptake. Bioorganic & medicinal chemistry. 2012 Nov 1;20(21):6344-55

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PMID: 23022052

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