Development of small molecular tools for the cellular study of adenosine receptors

Lochner, Martin; Hemmings, Jennifer Luise; Knight, Anthony; Frenguelli, Bruno G.; Ladds, Graham (15 June 2015). Development of small molecular tools for the cellular study of adenosine receptors (Unpublished). In: Challenges in Chemical Biology (ISACS16). ETH Zürich, Hönggerberg, Switzerland. 15.06.-18.06.2015.

The adenosine receptors are members of the G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) family which represents the largest class of cell-surface proteins mediating cellular communication. As a result, GPCRs are formidable drug targets and it is estimated that approximately 30% of the marketed drugs act through members of this receptor class. There are four known subtypes of adenosine receptors: A1, A2A, A2B and A3. The adenosine A1 receptor, which is the subject of this presentation, mediates the physiological effects of adenosine in various tissues including the brain, heart, kidney and adipocytes. In the brain for instance, its role in epilepsy and ischemia has been the focus of many studies. Previous attempts to study the biosynthesis, trafficking and agonist-induced internalisation of the adenosine A1 receptor in neurons using fluorescent protein-receptor fusion constructs have been hampered by the sheer size of the fluorescent protein (GFP) that ultimately affected the function of the receptor. We have therefore initiated a research programme to develop small molecule fluorescent agonists that selectively activate the adenosine A1 receptor. Our probe design is based on the endogenous ligand adenosine and the known unselective adenosine receptor agonist NECA. We have synthesised a small library of non-fluorescent adenosine derivatives that have different cyclic and bicyclic moieties at the 6 position of the purine ring and have evaluated the pharmacology of these compounds using a yeast-based assay. This analysis revealed compounds with interesting behaviour, i.e. exhibiting subtype-selectivity and biased signalling, that can be potentially used as tool compounds in their own right for cellular studies of the adenosine A1 receptor. Furthermore, we have also linked fluorescent dyes to the purine ring and discovered fluorescent compounds that can activate the adenosine A1 receptor.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)


08 Faculty of Science > Departement of Chemistry and Biochemistry

UniBE Contributor:

Lochner, Martin and Hemmings, Jennifer Luise


500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
500 Science > 540 Chemistry




Martin Lochner

Date Deposited:

25 Jun 2015 14:41

Last Modified:

25 Jun 2015 14:41


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