Biased agonism has been proposed as a means to separate desirable and adverse drug responses downstream of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) targets. Herein, we describe structural features of a series of mu-opioid-receptor (MOR)-selective agonists that preferentially activate receptors to couple to G proteins or to recruit βarrestin proteins. By comparing relative bias for MOR-mediated signaling in each pathway, we demonstrate a strong correlation between the respiratory suppression/antinociception therapeutic window in a series of compounds spanning a wide range of signaling bias. We find that βarrestin-biased compounds, such as fentanyl, are more likely to induce respiratory suppression at weak analgesic doses, while G protein signaling bias broadens the therapeutic window, allowing for antinociception in the absence of respiratory suppression.
SciCrunch is a data sharing and display platform. Anyone can create a custom portal where they can select searchable subsets of hundreds of data sources, brand their web pages and create their community. SciCrunch will push data updates automatically to all portals on a weekly basis. User communities can also add their own data to SciCrunch, however this is not currently a free service.