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Roth BL, Choudhary MS, Khan N, Uluer AZ. 
“High-affinity agonist binding is not sufficient for agonist efficacy at 5-hydroxytryptamine2A receptors: evidence in favor of a modified ternary complex model.”. 
J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 1997 Mar 17;280(2):576-83.
In this study, the relationship between high-affinity agonist binding and second messenger production was examined at native and mutant 5-hydroxytryptamine2A receptors. At native 5-hydroxytryptamine2A receptors all agonists, with the exception of quipazine, discriminated between high- and low-affinity states of the receptor, as determined by analysis of competition binding assays. There was no correlation between the ability of selected agonists to label the high-affinity agonist state and to augment phosphoinositide hydrolysis. Quipazine, which did not discriminate between the affinity states of the receptor, behaved as a full agonist. Similar results were obtained when a point mutation (F340L) of a highly conserved phenylalanine located in transmembrane domain VI was examined. With the F340L mutant, most of the agonists tested labeled significantly fewer high-affinity sites, compared with the native receptor. There was no significant relationship between high-affinity agonist binding and second messenger production. Bufotenine and 4-iodo-3,5-dimethoxyphenylisopropylamine labeled similar percentages of high-affinity agonist binding sites (22% vs. 26%), but 4-iodo-3,5-dimethoxyphenylisopropylamine behaved as a full agonist, whereas bufotenine was devoid of detectable agonist activity. The inability of selected agonists to activate phosphoinositide hydrolysis was not due solely to lower agonist affinity for the mutant receptor, because the binding affinity of quipazine was unchanged by the F340L mutation but quipazine had no detectable agonist activity at the mutant receptor. Our results demonstrate that the ability of an agonist to promote the high-affinity state of the 5-hydroxytryptamine2A receptor is not correlated with its ability to augment second messenger production. These results are consistent with recent models of G protein-receptor functioning (e.g., modified ternary complex model) that predict that additional transition states of the receptor-ligand complex are essential for agonist efficacy.
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