Sun, Y., Ranjan, A., Tisdale, R. K., Park, S., Ma, S. C., Haire, M., … & Kilduff, T. S. (2022). Evaluation of the Efficacy of the Hypocretin/orexin Receptor Agonists TAK-925 and ARN-776 in Narcoleptic Orexin/tTA; TetO-DTA Mice. bioRxiv, 2022-12.
The sleep disorder Narcolepsy, a hypocretin deficiency disorder thought to be due to degeneration of hypothalamic hypocretin/orexin neurons, is currently treated symptomatically. We evaluated the efficacy of two small molecule hypocretin/orexin receptor-2 (HCRTR2) agonists in narcoleptic male orexin/tTA; TetO-DTA mice. TAK- 925 (1-10 mg/kg, s.c.) and ARN-776 (1-10 mg/kg, i.p.) were injected 15 min before dark onset in a repeated measures design. EEG, EMG, subcutaneous temperature (Tsc) and activity were recorded by telemetry; recordings for the first 6-h of the dark period were scored for sleep/wake and cataplexy. At all doses tested, TAK-925 and ARN-776 caused continuous wakefulness and eliminated sleep for the first hour. Both TAK-925 and ARN-776 caused dose-related delays in NREM sleep onset. All doses of TAK-925 and all but the lowest dose of ARN-776 eliminated cataplexy during the first hour after treatment; the anti-cataplectic effect of TAK-925 persisted into the 2nd hour for the highest dose. TAK-925 and ARN-776 also reduced the cumulative amount of cataplexy during the 6-h post-dosing period. The acute increase in wakefulness produced by both HCRTR2 agonists was characterized by increased spectral power in the gamma EEG band. Although neither compound provoked a NREM sleep rebound, both compounds affected NREM EEG during the 2nd hour post-dosing. TAK-925 and ARN-776 also increased gross motor activity, running wheel activity and Tsc, suggesting that the wake-promoting and sleep-suppressing activities of these compounds could be a consequence of hyperactivity. Nonetheless, the anti-cataplectic activity of TAK-925 and ARN-776 is encouraging for the development of HcrtR2 agonists.