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Towards the convergent therapeutic potential of GPCRs in autism spectrum disorders


Changes in genetic and/or environmental factors to developing neural circuits and subsequent synaptic functions are known to be a causative underlying the varied socio-emotional behavioural patterns associated with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Seven transmembrane G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) comprising the largest family of cell-surface receptors, mediate the transfer of extracellular signals to downstream cellular responses. Disruption of GPCR and their signalling have been implicated as a convergent pathologic mechanism of ASD. Here, we aim to review the literature about the 23 GPCRs that are genetically associated to ASD pathology according to Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI) database such as oxytocin (OXTR) and vasopressin (V1A, V1B) receptors, metabotropic glutamate (mGlu5, mGlu7) and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAB) receptors, dopamine (D1, D2), serotoninergic (5-HT1B and additionally included the 5-HT2A, 5-HT7 receptors for their strong relevance to ASD), adrenergic (β2) and cholinergic (M3) receptors, adenosine (A2A, A3) receptors, angiotensin (AT2) receptors, cannabinoid (CB1) receptors, chemokine (CX3CR1) receptors, orphan (GPR37, GPR85) and olfactory (OR1C1, OR2M4, OR2T10, OR52M1) receptors. We discussed the genetic variants, relation to core ASD behavioural deficits and update on pharmacological compounds targeting these 23 GPCRs. Of these OTR, V1A, mGlu5, D2, 5-HT2A, CB1, and GPR37 serve as the best therapeutic targets and have potential towards core domains of ASD pathology. With a functional crosstalk between different GPCRs and converging pharmacological responses, there is an urge to develop novel therapeutic strategies based on multiple GPCRs to reduce the socioeconomic burden associated with ASD and we strongly emphasize the need to prioritize the increased clinical trials targeting the multiple GPCRs.
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Dates and versions

hal-03821893 , version 1 (26-10-2022)



Anil Annamneedi, Caroline Gora, Ana Dudas, Xavier Leray, Véronique Bozon, et al.. Towards the convergent therapeutic potential of GPCRs in autism spectrum disorders. 2022. ⟨hal-03821893⟩
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