Pharmacology of pravadoline: a new analgesic agent. Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Pravadoline is a new chemical entity with analgesic activity in humans. This report describes the pharmacology of pravadoline and compares the activity of pravadoline with that of two major classes of analgesics, the opioids and the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Like the NSAIDs, pravadoline inhibited the synthesis of prostaglandins (PGs) in mouse brain both in vitro (IC50, 4.9 microM) and ex vivo (ED50, 20 mg/kg p.o.) and displayed antinociceptive activity in rodents subjected to a variety of chemical, thermal and mechanical nociceptive stimuli. Administration of pravadoline prevented the writhing response induced by i.p. administration of acetylcholine (ED50, 41 mg/kg p.o.) or PGE2 (ED50, 24 mg/kg p.o.) and prolonged the response latency induced by tail immersion in hot water at a temperature of 55 degrees C (minimum effective dose, 100 mg/kg s.c.). In the rat, treatment with pravadoline prevented acetic acid-induced writhing (ED50, 15 mg/kg p.o.), brewer's yeast-induced hyperalgesia (Randall-Selitto test) (minimum effective dose, 1 mg/kg p.o.), the nociceptive response induced by paw flexion in the adjuvant-arthritic rat (ED50, 41 mg/kg p.o.) and bradykinin-induced head and forepaw flexion (ED50, 78 mg/kg, p.o.). The antinociceptive activity of pravadoline cannot be explained by an opioid mechanism, because pravadoline-induced antinociception was not antagonized by naloxone (1 mg/kg s.c.) and pravadoline did not bind to opioid receptors at concentrations up to 10 microM. However, like the opioid analgesics, pravadoline diminished the electrically induced twitch response of mouse vas deferens preparations, but, in contrast to opioids, this action of pravadoline was not attenuated by naloxone. The possibility is discussed that this effect of pravadoline upon isolated tissues may contribute to its antinociceptive activity. In contrast to NSAIDs, pravadoline was more potent ex vivo as an inhibitor of the formation of PGs in brain vs. stomach. In addition, pravadoline failed to produce gastrointestinal lesions when administered p.o. to rats or mice, and did not possess significant anti-inflammatory activity at antinociceptive doses. Also unlike NSAIDs, pravadoline inhibited rat gastrointestinal transit when administered at doses similar to those which were antinociceptive. The overall pharmacologic profile of pravadoline suggests that the compound may be capable of managing more diverse or more severe pain than is achieved by anti-inflammatory analgesics, without producing side effects commonly associated with either the opioid or the nonopioid analgesics.


  • Haubrich, DR
  • Ward, SJ
  • Baizman, E
  • Bell, MR
  • Bradford, J
  • Ferrari, R
  • Miller, Matthew S
  • Perrone, M
  • Pierson, AK
  • Saelens, JK

publication date

  • November 1990