Different Classes of Antidepressants Inhibit the Rat α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor by Interacting within the Ion Channel: A Functional and Structural Study

Yorley Duarte, Maximiliano Rojas, Jonathan Canan, Edwin G. Pérez, Fernando González-Nilo, Jesús García-Colunga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Several antidepressants inhibit nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in a non-competitive and voltage-dependent fashion. Here, we asked whether antidepressants with a different structure and pharmacological profile modulate the rat α7 nAChR through a similar mechanism by interacting within the ion-channel. We applied electrophysiological (recording of the ion current elicited by choline, ICh, which activates α7 nAChRs from rat CA1 hippocampal interneurons) and in silico approaches (homology modeling of the rat α7 nAChR, molecular docking, molecular dynamics simulations, and binding free energy calculations). The antidepressants inhibited ICh with the order: norfluoxetine ~ mirtazapine ~ imipramine < bupropion ~ fluoxetine ~ venlafaxine ~ escitalopram. The constructed homology model of the rat α7 nAChR resulted in the extracellular vestibule and the channel pore is highly negatively charged, which facilitates the permeation of cations and the entrance of the protonated form of antidepressants. Molecular docking and molecular dynamics simulations were carried out within the ion-channel of the α7 nAChR, revealing that the antidepressants adopt poses along the receptor channel, with slightly different binding-free energy values. Furthermore, the inhibition of ICh and free energy values for each antidepressant-receptor complex were highly correlated. Thus, the α7 nAChR is negatively modulated by a variety of antidepressants interacting in the ion-channel.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMolecules (Basel, Switzerland)
Volume26
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Feb 2021

Keywords

  • allosteric modulators
  • antidepressants
  • biological activity
  • hippocampus
  • in silico studies
  • α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry

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