Although this laboratory has a wide range of interests, its primary focus is the molecular mechanisms of opioid action. Opioids have a rich pharmacology, which is easily studied in a wide variety of behavioral paradigms. The recent cloning of 4 genes encoding opioid receptors has led us to focus our attention upon correlating these various cloned receptors with pharmacological actions.


Majumdar S, Subrath J, Le Rouzic V, Polikar L, Burgman M, Nagakura K, Ocampo J, Haselton N, Pasternak AR, Grinnell S, Pan YX, Pasternak GW.Synthesis and evaluation of aryl-naloxamide opiate analgesics targeting truncated exon 11-associated μ opioid receptor (MOR-1) splice variants. J Med Chem. 2012 Jul 26;55(14):6352-62. doi: 10.1021/jm300305c. Epub 2012 Jul 16.

Majumdar S, Grinnell S, Le Rouzic V, Burgman M, Polikar L, Ansonoff M, Pintar J, Pan YX, Pasternak GW. Truncated G protein-coupled mu opioid receptor MOR-1 splice variants are targets for highly potent opioid analgesics lacking side effects. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Dec 6;108(49):19778-83. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1115231108. Epub 2011 Nov 21.

Kim FJ, Kovalyshyn I, Burgman M, Neilan C, Chien CC, Pasternak GW. Sigma 1 receptor modulation of G-protein-coupled receptor signaling: potentiation of opioid transduction independent from receptor binding. Mol Pharmacol. 2010 Apr;77(4):695-703. doi: 10.1124/mol.109.057083. Epub 2010 Jan 20.

Pan YX, Xu J, Xu M, Rossi GC, Matulonis JE, Pasternak GW. Involvement of exon 11-associated variants of the mu opioid receptor MOR-1 in heroin, but not morphine, actions. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Mar 24;106(12):4917-22. doi: 10.1073/pnas.0811586106. Epub 2009 Mar 9.

Xu J, Xu M, Hurd YL, Pasternak GW, Pan YX. Isolation and characterization of new exon 11-associated N-terminal splice variants of the human mu opioid receptor gene. J Neurochem. 2009 Feb;108(4):962-72. doi: 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2008.05833.x. Epub 2008 Dec 10.

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