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Case Study 1: Development of the Analgesic Drugs Prialt® and Xen2174 from Cone Snail Venoms

Cone snail venoms are a rich source of small, structurally constrained peptides (conotoxins) that are widely used as research tools and as a source of promising leads to potential therapies. At least 15 pharmacological classes of conotoxins have been characterized, including clinically evaluated ω-conotoxins that inhibit the voltage-gated calcium channel Cav2.2 and χ-conopeptides that inhibit the noradrenaline transporter. The ω-conotoxins isolated from piscivorous snails and χ-conopeptides from molluscivorous snails produce analgesia when administered intrathecally in rodent models of neuropathic pain, by either directly or indirectly inhibiting Cav2.2. Open label studies showed that intrathecal ω-MVIIA (Prialt®), ω-CVID (Leconitide) and χ-Xen2174 reduced pain scores in cancer patients suffering severe chronic pain. This review compares and contrasts these two classes of venom peptide and the pain pathways they inhibit.

Print publication date: 10 Feb 2015
Copyright year: 2015
Print ISBN: 978-1-84973-663-3
PDF eISBN: 978-1-84973-787-6
ePub eISBN: 978-1-78262-437-0
From the book series:
Drug Discovery