Assessment of rimonabant-like adverse effects of purported CB1R neutral antagonist / CB2R agonist aminoalkylindole derivatives in mice

Sherrica Tai, Tamara Vasiljevik, Alexander M. Sherwood, Sarah Eddington, Catheryn D. Wilson, Thomas E. Prisinzano, William E. Fantegrossi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Background: Cannabinoids may be useful in the treatment of CNS disorders including drug abuse and addiction, where both CB1R antagonists / inverse agonists and CB2R agonists have shown preclinical efficacy. TV-5-249 and TV-6-41, two novel aminoalkylindoles with dual action as neutral CB1R antagonists and CB2R agonists, previously attenuated abuse-related effects of ethanol in mice. Purpose: To further characterize these drugs, TV-5-249 and TV-6-41 were compared with the CB1R antagonist / inverse agonist rimonabant in assays relevant to adverse effects and cannabinoid withdrawal. Procedures and findings: The cannabinoid tetrad confirmed that TV-5-249 and TV-6-41 were devoid of CB1R agonist effects at behaviorally-relevant doses, and neither of the novel drugs induced rimonabant-like scratching. Generalized aversive effects were assessed, and rimonabant and TV-5-249 induced taste aversion, but TV-6-41 did not. Schedule-controlled responding and observation of somatic signs were used to assess withdrawal-like effects precipitated by rimonabant or TV-6-41 in mice previously treated with the high-efficacy CB1R agonist JWH-018 or vehicle. Rimonabant and TV-6-41 dose-dependently suppressed response rates in all subjects, but TV-6-41 did so more potently in JWH-018-treated mice than in vehicle-treated mice, while rimonabant equally suppressed responding in both groups. Importantly, rimonabant elicited dramatic withdrawal signs, but TV-6-41 did not. Conclusions: These findings suggest differences in both direct adverse effects and withdrawal-related effects elicited by rimonabant, TV-5-249, and TV-6-41, which could relate to neutral CB1R antagonism, CB2R agonism, or a combination of both. Both mechanisms should be explored and exploited in future drug design efforts to develop pharmacotherapies for drug dependence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)285-293
Number of pages9
JournalDrug and Alcohol Dependence
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the UAMS Division of Laboratory Animal Medicine for expert husbandry services. This research was supported, in part, by USPHS grants DA039143 and DA022981, by NIGMS IDeA Program award GM110702, by the UAMS Translational Research Institute (RR029884), and by a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship from the American Society of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018


  • Cannabinoid receptors
  • Inverse agonist
  • Neutral antagonist
  • Precipitated withdrawal
  • Scratching
  • Taste aversion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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