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Publication Detail
Reversal of behavioural phenotype by the cannabinoid-like compound VSN16R in fragile X syndrome mice.
  • Publication Type:
    Journal article
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  • Authors:
    Hurley MJ, Deacon RMJ, Chan AWE, Baker D, Selwood DL, Cogram P
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  • Keywords:
    BK channel, FMRP, Fmr1 knockout mouse, VSN16R, fragile X syndrome
Fragile X Syndrome is the most common inherited intellectual disability and mono-genetic cause of autism spectrum disorder. It is a neurodevelopmental condition occurring due to a CGG trinucleotide expansion in the FMR1 gene. Polymorphisms and variants in large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channels are increasingly linked to intellectual disability and loss of FMR protein caused reduced large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channel activity leading to abnormalities in synapse function. Using the cannabinoid-like large-conductance calcium-activated potassium channel activator VSN16R we rescued behavioural deficits such as repetitive behaviour, hippocampal dependent tests of daily living, hyperactivity and memory in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome. VSN16R has been shown to be safe in a phase 1 study in healthy volunteers and in a phase 2 study in people with Multiple Sclerosis with high oral bioavailability and no serious adverse effects reported. VSN16R could therefore be directly utilised in a fragile X syndrome clinical study. Moreover, VSN16R showed no evidence of tolerance, which strongly suggests that chronic VSN16R may have great therapeutic value for fragile X syndrome and autism spectrum disorder. This study provides new insight into the pathophysiology of fragile X syndrome and identifies a new pathway for drug intervention for this debilitating disorder.
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