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Pharmacological profiling an abundantly expressed schistosome serotonergic GPCR identifies nuciferine as a potent antagonist. Int J Parasitol Drugs Drug Resist 2016 12;6(3):364-370 PMID: 27397763 PMCID: PMC5196489


5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) is a key regulator of muscle contraction in parasitic flatworms. In Schistosoma mansoni, the myoexcitatory action of 5-HT is effected through activation of a serotonergic GPCR (Sm.5HTR), prioritizing pharmacological characterization of this target for anthelmintic drug discovery. Here, we have examined the effects of several aporphine alkaloids on the signaling activity of a heterologously expressed Sm.5HTRconstruct using a cAMP biosensor assay. Four structurally related natural products - nuciferine, D-glaucine, boldine and bulbocapnine - were demonstrated to block Sm.5HTRevoked cAMP generation with the potency of GPCR blockade correlating well with the ability of each drug to inhibit contractility of schistosomule larvae. Nuciferine was also effective at inhibiting both basal and 5-HT evoked motility of adult schistosomes. These data advance our understanding of structure-affinity relationships at Sm.5HTR, and demonstrate the effectiveness of Sm.5HTRantagonists as hypomotility-evoking drugs across different parasite life cycle stages.

Author List

Chan JD, Acharya S, Day TA, Marchant JS


Jonathan S. Marchant PhD Chair, Professor in the Cell Biology, Neurobiology and Anatomy department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
Schistosoma mansoni
Serotonergic Neurons
Serotonin Antagonists

View this publication's entry at the Pubmed website PMID: 27397763
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