Transmembrane segment five serines of the D4 dopamine receptor uniquely influence the interactions of dopamine, norepinephrine, and Ro10-4548

David F. Cummings, Spencer S. Ericksen, Angela Goetz, John A. Schetz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Conserved serines of transmembrane segment (TM) five (TM5) are critical for the interactions of endogenous catecholamines with α1- and α2-adrenergic, β2-adrenergic, and D1, D2, and D3 dopamine receptors. The unique high-affinity interaction of the D4 dopamine receptor subtype with both norepinephrine and dopamine, and the fact that TM5 serine interactions have never been studied for this receptor subtype, led us to investigate the interactions of ligands with D4 receptor TM5 serines. Serine-to-alanine mutations at positions 5.42 and 5.46 drastically decreased affinities of dopamine and norepinephrine for the D4 receptor. The D4-S5.43A receptor mutant had substantially reduced affinity for norepinephrine, but a modest loss of affinity for dopamine. In functional assays of cAMP accumulation, norephinephrine was unable to activate any of the mutant receptors, even though the agonist quinpirole displayed wild-type functional properties for all of them. Dopamine was unable to activate the S5.46A mutant and had reduced potency for the S5.43A mutant and reduced potency and efficacy for the S5.42A mutant. In contrast, Ro10-4548 [RAC-2′-2-hydroxy-3-4-(4-hydroxy-2-methoxyphenyl)-1- piperazinyl-propoxy-acetanilide], a catechol-like antagonist of the wild-type receptor unexpectedly functions as an agonist of the S5.43A mutant. Other noncatechol ligands had similar properties for mutant and wild-type receptors. This is the first example of a dopamine receptor point mutation selectively changing the receptor's interaction with a specific antagonist to that of an agonist, and together with other data, provides evidence, supported by molecular modeling, that catecholamine-type agonism is induced by different ligand-specific configurations of intermolecular H-bonds with the TM5 conserved serines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)682-695
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2010


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