Nucl Med Biol. 2013 Nov;40(8):1000-5 doi: 10.1016/j.nucmedbio.2013.07.001. 2013 Aug 15.

Evaluation of potential PET imaging probes for the orexin 2 receptors

Wang C, Wilson CM, Moseley CK, Carlin SM, Hsu S, Arabasz G, Schroeder FA, Sander CY, Hooker JM.


A wide range of central nervous system (CNS) disorders, particularly those related to sleep, are associated with the abnormal function of orexin (OX) receptors. Several orexin receptor antagonists have been reported in recent years, but currently there are no imaging tools to probe the density and function of orexin receptors in vivo. To date there are no published data on the pharmacokinetics (PK) and accumulation of some lead orexin receptor antagonists. Evaluation of CNS pharmacokinetics in the pursuit of positron emission tomography (PET) radiotracer development could be used to elucidate the association of orexin receptors with diseases and to facilitate the drug discovery and development. To this end, we designed and evaluated carbon-11 labeled compounds based on diazepane orexin receptor antagonists previously described. One of the synthesized compounds, [(11)C]CW4, showed high brain uptake in rats and further evaluated in non-human primate (NHP) using PET-MR imaging. PET scans performed in a baboon showed appropriate early brain uptake for consideration as a radiotracer. However, [(11)C]CW4 exhibited fast kinetics and high nonspecific binding, as determined after co-administration of [(11)C]CW4 and unlabeled CW4. These properties indicate that [(11)C]CW4 has excellent brain penetrance and could be used as a lead compound for developing new CNS-penetrant PET imaging probes of orexin receptors.

PMID: 23953751