Yuting Chen, Qingqing Wu, Zhengsheng Jin, Yanlan Qin, Fancui Meng* and Guilong Zhao* Pages 5097 - 5112 ( 16 )
Background: Neuropathic pain (NP) is a complex symptom related to nerve damage. The discovery of new drugs for treating chronic NP has been continuing for several decades, while more progress is still needed because of the unsatisfactory efficacy and the side effects of the currently available drugs. Among all the approved drugs for chronic NP, voltage- gated calcium channel (VGCC) α2δ subunit ligands, also known as gabapentinoids, are among the first-line treatment and represent a class of efficacious and relatively safe therapeutic agents. However, new strategies are still needed to be explored due to the unsatisfied response rate.
Objective: The aim of the study is to review the latest status of the discovery and development of gabapentinoids for the treatment of chronic NP by covering both the marketed and the preclinical/clinical ones. Moreover, it aims to analyze the structure-activity relationship (SAR) of gabapentinoids to facilitate the future design of structurally novel therapeutic agents targeting the VGCC α2δ subunit.
Methods: We searched PubMed Central, Embase, Cochrane Library, Web of Science, Scopus, and Espacenet for the literature and patents on diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain, postherpetic neuralgia, fibromyalgia, voltage-gated calcium channel α2δ subunit and related therapeutic agents from incipient to June 10, 2021. The SAR of gabapentinoids was analyzed by pharmacophore modeling using the Phase module in the Schrödinger suite.
Results: A variety of gabapentinoids were identified as VGCC α2δ ligands that have ever been under development to treat chronic NP. Among them, four gabapentinoids are marketed, one is in the active late clinical trials, and eight have been discontinued. Pharmacophore models were generated using the phase module in the Schrödinger suite, and common pharmacophores were predicted based on pharmacophoric features and analyzed.
Conclusion: The latest progress in the discovery and development of gabapentinoids for the treatment of chronic NP was reviewed. Moreover, the structure-activity relationship (SAR) of gabapentinoids has been analyzed by pharmacophore modeling, which will be valuable for the future design of structurally novel therapeutic agents targeting the VGCC α2δ subunit.
Voltage-gated calcium channel, α2δ subunit, neuropathic pain, structure-activity relationship (SAR), pharmacophore modeling, gabapentinoids.