VLY-686 (formerly known at Lilly as LY686017) is an NK-1R antagonist currently at the clinical stage of development, with previous research focusing on the potential as a novel therapeutic in alcohol dependence (1). The patent describing VLY-686 as a new chemical entity expires worldwide in
, except in
the United States
, where it expires in
, absent any applicable patent term adjustments.
About the Neurokinin-1 Receptor and Substance P
The NK-1R is expressed throughout different tissues of the body, with major activity found in neuronal tissue. Substance P (SP) and NK-1R interactions in neuronal tissue regulate neurogenic inflammation locally and the pain perception pathway through the central nervous system. Other tissues, including endothelial cells and immune cells, have also exhibited SP and NK-1R activity
(2). The activation of NK-1R by the natural ligand SP is involved in numerous physiological processes, including the perception of pain, behavioral stressors, cravings, and the processes of nausea and vomiting
(1,2,3). An inappropriate over-expression of SP either in nervous tissue or peripherally could result in pathological conditions such as substance dependence, anxiety, nausea/vomiting, and pruritus
(1,2,3,4). An NK-1R antagonist may possess
the ability to reduce this over-stimulation of the NK-1R, and as a result address the underlying pathophysiology of the symptoms in these conditions.
:Vanda Pharmaceuticals Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of products for the treatment of central nervous system disorders. For more on Vanda Pharmaceuticals Inc., please visit
1. George DT, Gilman J, Hersh J, Thorsell A, Herion D, Geyer C, Peng X, Keilbasa W, Rawlings R, Brandt JE, Gehlert DR,
, Hunt SP, Hommer D, Heilig M. Neurokinin 1 receptor antagonism as a possible therapy for alcoholism. Science. 2008; 319(5869):1536-9.
2. Almeida TA, Rojo J, Nieto PM, Pinto FM, Hernandez M, et al. Tachykinins and tachykinin receptors: structure and activity relationships. Current Medicinal Chemistry. 2004;11:2045–2081.